Microsoft Panning to Launch low-priced Surface tablets to Challenge Apple

Microsoft working on smaller cheaper Surface tablets to rival Apple's iPad

Microsoft working on smaller cheaper Surface tablets to rival Apple's iPad

The only bad news is that the battery life sounds like it will take a hit, down around 30% from the current Surface Pro devices. Sources say Intel will supply the main processor and graphics chips. Microsoft went for cheaper options with its Surface RT, Surface 2 and Surface 3, but none of those has the success of the more powerful, high-end Surface Pro lineup.

Apple's iPad business generated revenues of nearly $20 billion in the past year through sales of over 40 million iPads, according to Bloomberg.

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It's worth noting that this isn't Microsoft's first attempt at creating a more affordable Surface tablet. Beyond cutting the new tablets' prices, Microsoft will apparently also offer less expensive versions of its keyboard cover, stylus, and mouse accessories, which will be sold separately.

Microsoft shares are down 0.3% to $97.04.

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While the first generation Surface Hub could only be used in landscape mode, the new version can be rotated and turned into a portrait screen.

Microsoft declined to comment on the rumors of a cheaper Surface model, Bloomberg said. However, Bloomberg claims that they should cost a bit less than the current Surface Pro keyboard. Microsoft is planning multiple models, including versions with 64 and 128 GB and models that can connect to LTE networks. Surface tablet sales were up 1.8 per cent in the most recent quarter and the entire Surface hardware business brought in $4.4 billion over the a year ago. The tablets will feature kickstand for typing and be watching the video and it will run on Windows 10 Pro. This could likely mean that the cut down Windows 10 S will be in use; although Redmond may shy away from reminding people of the disastrous Windows RT launch. The device came with a 10.8-inch display and the company stopped its production in at the end of 2016. Microsoft may have decided it was time to change that; the rumored tablets would upgrade previous offerings in a big way.

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