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back to article Surface tablets snapped up on pre-order, but no camping in the street

They may not be sleeping on the street in hopes of being the first to get their mitts on it, but Brits do seem enthusiastic about the new Microsoft Surface tablet. Preorders of the device have already sold out in the UK, the Microsoft UK site shows – at least the £399 32GB version. The £599 64GB version is still available. A …

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Anonymous Coward

Of course

They just might have only given us twelve on pre-order.

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Re: Of course

Indeed... It's not like we haven't seen the old "sold out in x hours" and "sales exceeded all expectations" headline grabber once or five times before from certain tablet shifters.

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Anonymous Coward

'The Brits'

Who the hell uses a term like that except for Johnny Foreigner describing the inhabitants of the UK.

Sounds to me like someone is trying to 'big up' the sales to encourage others to buy it, by using us as examples of customers.

Where we lead others will follow, especially in tech an innovation so on the part of the advertising walla it might be a good move.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: 'The Brits'

> Who the hell uses a term like that except for Johnny Foreigner

Allow me to open a can of worms: Northern Irish nationalists.

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Anonymous Coward

So... They sold both of them...

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Think your a bit optimistic there, personally I think 'they have sold it' is more realistic

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Windows

More than that

They've sold more than that: Three people in my office have bought one (myself included).

Personally the key feature is user accounts. I've got an iPad 1 at home and it drives me up the wall that it provides no support for shared usage. They want me to leave it signed into email, facebook, twitter, etc, etc, etc, and then hand it to my kids (or my wife, who I trust but would rather be signed into her own accounts)!

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Re: More than that

I hear you but it is a clever ploy by Apple.

[User] Problem: Want your wife and 2 kids to have separate accounts?

[Apple] Solution: Buy another 3 iPad's

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Re: More than that

Well of course, they'd be stunned at the very idea that you could possibly want to share such a magical and revolutionary device with anyone!

Not that I'm even thinking of buying the Surface.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: More than that

Do android provide the same function? If yes, why wait for Microsoft, if no why only moan about apple?

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Brits love it?

There is an odd thing. The Xbox is huge in britain, while the rest of europe loves the ps3. And now the surface is selling well (or maybe well) in Britain. So why do the brits love Microsoft?

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Brits love it?

Traditionalism... same reason the Brits take great pains to build and decorate new houses so that they look just like the old houses.

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Unhappy

Re: Brits love it?

I'm going to risk downvotes for this but I think you are close to the mark. My own estimation is that there are unhealthy levels of celebrity and brand culture in the UK; more so than I've observed In other cultures I've visited and lived in.

Example: Just consider the account of cloned high streets that have taken over our towns and cities. Despite better quality, service, value and local economic benefits, huge amounts of Brits will sadly spurn smaller businesses in favour of chain stores. In some cases it makes sense but most of the time there's no real explanation other than brand awareness.

Translated to Tech purchases, this explains why many of us geeks find little of value at CurryWorld and sometimes have no choice but to order our coveted gadgets online. Whereas Asians, Europeans and (to a lesser extent) North Americans can simply wander down to the mall and are greeted by multiple competing brands and choice.

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Re: Brits love it?

I think you are suffering from some delusion if you think this is a purely British problem. Nearly all EU countries have a Curry equivalent with a local near monopoly on consumer electronics.(FNAC,MediaMarkt etc.).

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Re: Brits love it?

Years of privation during the war made them culturally inured to suffering?

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Meh

Re: Brits love it?

The UK hates winners, preferring second best- qv Sky vs BSB, etc.

Bloody "plucky runners" up culture.

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Re: Xbox is huge in britain

Worth pointing out though that XBox Live is generally regarded as being a good bit better than PSN.

The House of Stupid has both Xbox360 and PS3, and for anything that's likely to be played online the teen Stupids look for the Xbox first.

Quite why that translates into europe going for the PS3 though is anybody's guess, but is that right anyway? I don't know any figures and frankly can't be arsed looking them up, but Bored is regularly in France and the Xbox section in Leclerc or SuperU always seems to have more space dedicated to it than the PS3 section :/

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@Dana W - Re: Brits love it?

Wrote :-

"Years of privation during the war made them culturally inured to suffering?"

Many or most mainland Europeans suffered far more privation than the Brits. I say this as a Brit. I know Brits who lived through WW2 and thought it was terrible that they could only drink a few cups of tea every day, that bananas were rationed, and that a bomb once fell in a garden three streets away.

Anyone who thinks this was bad should read "Berlin" by Antony Beevor. Only if you have a strong stomach though.

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Holmes

Re: Brits love it?

You are right, most Brits love MS. It is a kind of conservatism and they would never think of using an alternative. To most Brits MS seems to be cuddly - despite all MS have done, because they are unaware of it and cannot believe it if told.

When my (large) company ditched Lotus software for Office, at the briefing I stood up and said we should not be passing money to a convicted monopololist that breaks legal agreements with the EU. People turned in their seats and seemed to regard me as some kind of trouble-maker, and the issue was laughed off like a poor joke.

When I tell people that MS are convicted offenders, schemers and extortionists they look askance as if such a thing could not be possible about a company that looks after their computers and is headed by a saintly genius in the form of a boy-god. [Yes, yes, Gates no longer heads it, or looks like a boy, but they think he does]

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Anonymous Coward

@Nuke

Up to about halfway through your first paragraph it looked more like you were getting mixed up between MS and M&S.

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Black Helicopters

Re: Brits love it?

Surely that would suggest 'the Brits' ought to be all out buying Apple products... that isnt really the case though is it? Certainly Samsung and MS seem to be doing rather well in the UK compared to elsewhere.

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Re: @Dana W - Brits love it?

Fair enough and quite accurate. I was attempting a bit of levity. I did not claim to be writing a historical essay. I've read a fair bit about what Berlin was like in the end, but I'll look into the title if I can find it.

The worst we had here was rationing.

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Curiosity.....

Perhaps Brits are more curious. I'm curious and I'm tempted. That (mandatory IMHO) keyboard cover seems awfully pricey for what it is though.

Sent from one of my MacBook, iPad, Galaxy S3, Nexus 7 (too many toys)

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Re: Curiosity.....

Never too many toys...

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Never too many toys...

Indeed.

He who dies with the most toys, wins.

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Re: Never too many toys...

Do you plan to buried in a barrow with all of them?

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Re: Never too many toys...

quote: "Do you plan to buried in a barrow with all of them?"

Personally, I'm planning to have the barrow lined with them. Some of the 286 "laptops" I've had could be turned into a functional security door and/or bombproofing, at a pinch :D

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Anonymous Coward

In Stores?

"The BBC confirms that the Surface tabs have already shipped for the launch on Friday, meaning that boxes full of the tabs are already in stores"

Which stores? I've not checked beyond PCWorld, Amazon and Ebuyer and no one has anything listed, I'd be more tempted to buy one if I could have a play with one first.

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Why the Surprise?

I actually think the Surface tablet is the perfect representation of what Windows 8 is meant to be. Not to mention it comes w/Office 2013 does it not? I wouldn't mind having a Surface myself, if I didn't already have an iPad (provided by my work) and an Asus TF700T.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Why the Surprise?

A bit more finesse please, ref. your bait.

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it comes w/Office 2013 does it not?

I expect it will be Office 2013 in the same way that Windows RT is (not)Windows.

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The Surface tablet is the perfect representation of what Windows 8 is meant to be...

On that much you are right. Microsoft are the proverbial man with a Hammer. For years they saw every device as a PC, and thus tried to Windows-ize anything they could touch. Rather than learn the lesson from the Xbox (that different devices are used in different ways and thus need different experience), they're now trying to tabelize everything.

Win 8 might be great on a tablet, but on a traditional keyboard/mouse environment, its just horrendous.

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Nokia did it, too.

When the Nokia WP7 phones were first sold in the US, there was one color of one model that sold out - and it was repeatedly mentioned for months that the Nokia WP7 phones were so popular that they were selling out.

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Alert

Oh no - Usual marketing spin

This is not realy news in so much as it is more the standard marketing spin for a product that is not released yet.

This along with the usual aspects of the more storage you get the more the price does not follow a linear scale.

£200 difference for just another 32gb when you could put a RAID5 system together made out of 40gb SSD's for less. That realy does put the price gauging into perspective, but hey Apples does it, the public let them and so the appraoch was set in stone. I'm sure somebody will get the cheaper model, buy a RIM book 32GB for penuts and use it as the most overspecced memory stick for laughs and still be a cheaper outlay, albiet just silly.

Remember its that time of the year in the western world which involves pushing mass consumer products into our stockings, when I see the prices in febuary and actualy read reviews and see what they are like. Then I'd personaly start to ponder even looking at any form of order page. But I'm not renowned for my fashion, grammer or spelling abilities, so for those eager to own one, good for you as we are both happy.

But I see the word presale as more premarketing campaign; I suspect that in 20 years time I'll be going around saying bloody kids and bloody tablets along with the rest of elderly, bless.

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Optional

the 64gb model price includes the keyboard, whereas its an optional extra with the 32gb

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Optional

Ah, I missed that. Though still has to be one amazing keyboard for the difference still.

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Anonymous Coward

ffs

Why cant most people on here just accept the fact that just because many of you are still arguing that the Betamax is still better and anyone that buys VHS is a dork/sheep/clone... that the general computing public may actually want these devices. personally I have played with an ipad and found it to be a toy and no use for work, if all of a sudden there is a device which provides everything an ipad can do and gives me the ability to work, then I want some of that... and so it appears does everyone else who isn't concerned about spending all day hacking Linux kernels!!!!

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Trollface

This is a nation that like Simon cowell tv programmes and rupert Murdoch media so the country clearly is full of morons.

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Oddly...

Despite spending the preceding months actually worrying somewhat about Windows 8/Windows RT (I provide IT solutions and fix things for anyone from an old granny who can't get her email, to setting up offices and network/system/server solutions for SMEs for a living, so I have no choice but to deal with Win8 from release day), having read a couple of indepth, 'real world' reviews of them now (anandtech have looked at a couple, and sneaked in references to a hitherto unnamed Atom one, too, which is a good chunk faster), despite some performance issues on the Tegra T30 equipped ones (longish load times for apps etc) that kickstand and surface keyboard - yes, even the touch one - seem to be far more appealing as a usable device for productivity - IE a light usage laptop replacement.

That touch keyboard, for example, has raised key-tabs so you can feel where you are typing. No 'keys' per se, but that tactility (or lack thereof) is why all capacative, and non-strokeable (IE Swype etc) keyboards are crap.

Seems like a good halfway house between a usable keyboard without being overly heavy/bulky.

I'm back on the fence on this, previously having been fully in the 'bucket of stinking fail' camp.

Could be very interesting. I can't see it taking any market from traditional desktops and notebooks (just not enough grunt for the money/usage model) but as a 'cheap laptop' replacement, it's starting to look more sensible as a portable way to browse the web and knock out documents and spreadsheets.

Dare I say it, it might just give the iPad a solid kick in the kidneys in the corporate space as a result...

I hope so, the tablet space is getting a bit stale. Nice to see something that now genuinely appears to be a slightly different - and anyone who works in IT in the corporate space will agree, somewhat compelling - approach.

Steven R

(OS Agnostic, always cynical about everything, for reference...)

(Apologies for the excessive paranthesis - long day, too lazy to rewrite more fluidly :( )

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Anonymous Coward

I've not tried Win 8 at all in any of its guises but that type cover with the built in proper (not touch) keyboard could be pretty convincing... If it weren't £110.

£110 for a thin keyboard! It has to be pretty special considering a cheap USB keyboard can be had for a fiver.

At that price, it had better work on the next gen surfaces too.

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Have you tried the touch cover, or is it simply that you don't like the look of it? Most reviews seem to suggest it works better than it looks. I'll let you know tomorrow ;)

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xyz

Well I was going to pre-order one but....

...I'll wait for the Pro. I couldn't justify the price for a fart around play machine, so I bought a Kindle Fire HD 64GB instead. Only a few more hours 'til I get it. PS why do you have to mouse out these forms and then mouse in to see where your cursor is when you want to edit. Bloody annoying (IE 7 and IE 9 on different machines)

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WTF?

I don't understand.

Who are these people, who is actually getting them on pre-order? I have never ever met a fan boi of windows, never have I known anyone get anything preorder on windows. I would like to meet one (the only one?) and ask them questions about sanity and inteligence?

After using win8 I will be avoiding all tablet and winpho based devices.

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Re: I don't understand.

I know well of someone who has the windows logo, full colour, about 3 inch square, tattooed on their upper arm.

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xyz

Re: I don't understand.

Even though I'm not buying an RT version....but in answer to your question....they are HOT! Hotter in fact than a video of <insert your top 2 female models here> lying in bed naked with a tub of whipped cream and that "biting their lip" look on their faces. That HOT!!

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Trollface

Re: I don't understand.

They might ask about your inteligence (sic) too I wouldn't wonder....

Still its good to know you'll be avoiding tablets and winpho devices, because that way if I get one I will get to feel superior.

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£25 for a box and a couple of DVDs

The boxed version of Windows is £49.99 available to pre-order now. The download version is £24.99, why is there such a difference in cost? Who is going to pay £25 for a box and some DVDs?

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Re: £25 for a box and a couple of DVDs

To accomodate the retail channel's profit margin maybe?

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Pint

Not yet convinced...

I just have a feeling that it will be a flop, it seems to be trying to be everything. Someone said a lightweight laptop replacement? The Pro version might be but that's not going to be available for three months.

I hope I am wrong, but if I was after a tablet I would wait a couple of months until we have some real life reviews before jumping in. It's not to late to get the Chrismas market if it is a success but I am surprised that people say they are buying this version for business use rather than waiting for the pro version.

I am not very good at predicting what will be a success so me being sceptical is probably the best sign that Surface will outsell everyone's expectations....

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Re: Not yet convinced...Surface will outsell everyone's expectations

If it has sold more than 100 in pre-sales in the UK it has already surpased many commentards expectations here.

For myself the RT version is useless as like an ipad its a walled garden so not usable for work.

The pro version I would look at along with other more usual laptops etc and then decide, but that will be at least 2 years as my lenovo lappy is only 6 months old.

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