This Day On The Street
Continue to site right-arrow
ADVERTISEMENT
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here
Cramer's Action Alerts PLUS - See his portfolio and get alerts BEFORE every trade. Learn more NOW!

Microsoft to Unveil New Surface Tablets

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Microsoft (MSFT - Get Report) is planning a big event here in New York to unveil its second-generation Surface tablets. Last night the company invited journalists to attend a big shindig on Sept. 23 to see what has changed. There haven't been too many leaks to warn us in advance about what to expect. That could mean we'll be very surprised. Or, maybe not.

The new Surface RT tablet (which runs Windows RT, made especially for ARM (ARMH)-based processors) and the new Surface Pro (running Windows 8.1 on Intel (INTC) processors) are not expected to change much from the current, first-generation models. That could be a big problem for Microsoft.

Microsoft shares closed up 2.29% at $32.38 on Tuesday.

Those first Surface devices have not been big hits with the computer-buying public. The new Windows 8 interface was confusing to most Windows fans. And many users weren't ready to end their laptop/PC experience and run Windows on a tablet. But the most important factor was that the new devices were just too expensive. All of this added up to Microsoft having to take a $900 million charge for unsold inventory at the beginning of the summer.

So the software giant began lowering retail prices for Surface tablets. The move was somewhat expected after a year of lackluster sales and with new models on the way. Microsoft also began advertising on TV. Those ads boasted about Surface being able to do more than Apple (AAPL) iPads and do so at much lower prices. Those ads also began laying the groundwork for next-generation devices.

The new Surface tablets will reportedly have higher resolution screens, faster processors (capable of even better battery conservation) and possibly a redesigned prop-up stand on the back. The blogs are hard at work trying to guess every detail Microsoft might actually announce.

The best new feature will be Windows 8.1 software. Microsoft has been busy making lots of improvements to both of its Windows 8 operating systems. A few months back, Microsoft released free, downloadable beta versions of Windows 8.1 and Windows RT 8.1. We tried both and noticed a number of welcome improvements - including the return (in some form) of the infamous Windows "Start" button.

Our biggest surprise was with Windows RT 8.1. The beta software allowed the first generation Surface RT to zoom through tasks. Combined with lower hardware prices (currently down to $350) the Surface RT begins to make a lot of sense. We expect the final release versions of Windows 8.1 and Windows RT 8.1 to be even more polished.

Microsoft Surface tablets' future success will ultimately depend on what Microsoft decides to charge. The hardware really is top-notch. The software is improved greatly. The ingredients are there. Now the company needs to keep prices low to attract more buyers.

We'll be in attendance at the New York event in two weeks to let you know exactly what Microsoft announces.

Written by Gary Krakow in New York.

To submit a news tip, send an email to tips@thestreet.com.

Check Out Our Best Services for Investors

Action Alerts PLUS

Portfolio Manager Jim Cramer and Director of Research Jack Mohr reveal their investment tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
Quant Ratings

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
Stocks Under $10

David Peltier uncovers low dollar stocks with serious upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
14-Days Free
Try it NOW
Only $9.95
Try it NOW
14-Days Free
Try it NOW

Check Out Our Best Services for Investors

Dividend Stock Advisor

David Peltier identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Trifecta Stocks

Every recommendation goes through 3 layers of intense scrutiny—quantitative, fundamental and technical analysis—to maximize profit potential and minimize risk.

Product Features:
  • Model Portfolio
  • Intra Day Trade alerts
  • Access to Quant Ratings
Options Profits

Our options trading pros provide over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • Actionable options commentary and news
  • Real-time trading community
Try it NOW
Try it NOW
Try it NOW
To begin commenting right away, you can log in below using your Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, OpenID or Yahoo login credentials. Alternatively, you can post a comment as a "guest" just by entering an email address. Your use of the commenting tool is subject to multiple terms of service/use and privacy policies - see here for more details.
Submit an article to us!
SYM TRADE IT LAST %CHG
MSFT $44.09 0.55%
AAPL $129.59 0.88%
FB $79.52 0.69%
GOOG $560.92 0.45%
TSLA $197.55 -2.80%

Markets

DOW 18,242.48 +109.78 0.61%
S&P 500 2,113.92 +9.42 0.45%
NASDAQ 4,999.9710 +36.4440 0.73%

Partners Compare Online Brokers

Free Reports

Free Newsletters from TheStreet

My Subscriptions:

After the Bell

Before the Bell

Booyah! Newsletter

Midday Bell

TheStreet Top 10 Stories

Winners & Losers

Register for Newsletters
Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs