NEW YORK (

TheStreet

) - If you've been waiting - trying to decide whether you want to be among the first to shell out $500 for a shiny, new

Microsoft

(MSFT) - Get Report

Surface RT tablet - you might just be out of luck. The first wave of new hardware offerings is now "sold out" through Microsoft's online store.

That's a problem for would-be owners because Microsoft had said that was the only way you can get one. But the bloggers from

WP Central

have discovered another way.

One of their readers who lives in Oregon has actually ordered a Surface tablet from a Microsoft holiday retail pop-up store. They're located in

selected markets

, mostly malls, across 27 states as well as locations in Puerto Rico and Canada. That lucky buyer received a "Reservation Pass" allowing him to pick up his prize next Thursday - before noon.

Next Friday, Oct. 26, is the first day that the highly publicized Surface tablets will be available for purchase. That will follow a dazzling official introduction event in New York City on the previous day.

The first Surfaces to hit the stores will have

ARM

(ARMH)

-based processors, run on Microsoft's new Windows RT operating system, sport 32GB of onboard storage and sell for $499. That model, with a snap-on keyboard/cover, will sell for $599. A 64 GB Surface RT, without the keyboard, will retail for $599. The keyboard will sell separately for $129.

Surface tablets running on

Intel

(INTC) - Get Report

processors, along with the full Windows 8 operating system, are due to arrive in early November.

--Written by Gary Krakow in New York.

>To submit a news tip, send an email to:

tips@thestreet.com

.

Gary Krakow is TheStreet's senior technology correspondent.