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Surface with Windows 8 Pro Pricing In MacBook Air’s Ballpark – Too Pricy To Be A Hit?

In a Microsoft Blog, Panos Panay, General Manager of Microsoft Surface posted pricing information on the Surface with Windows 8 Pro tablet PC that will be available in January 2013.

Surface with Windows 8 Pro will be available in two versions:

• 64GB standalone version at $899

• 128GB standalone version at $999

That compares with the entry-level Surface with Windows RT 32GB model that lists for $499, or 44 percent less than the 64GB Surface with Windows 8 Pro and a minimum $200 more than a Windows RT Surface with 64GB of storage.

Both versions will both include a Surface pen with Palm Block technology and include the ability to use a Touch Cover or Type Cover (sold separately for an additional $120 for the Touch cover, for a total of $1,019 for the 64GB version or $1,119 for the 128GB version).

Surface with Windows 8 Pro uses the same design principles as Surface with Windows RT including the Dark Titanium VaporMg casing, dual 2×2 MIMO antennas designed specifically for Surface and the kickstand.

However, it also has some differences.

On the inside, Surface with Windows 8 Pro will come with a much more powerful Intel Ivy Bridge Core i5 processor which will provide the necessary a graphics boost for its 10.6” 16:9 ClearType display that runs at a 1920×1080 full HD resolution.

Surface with Windows 8 Pro also includes a full-size USB 3.0 port. Its Mini DisplayPort can drive an external display up to 2560 x 1440 resolution, and the standard Pen input features expanded capacitive and digitizing technology Microsoft is calling Palm Block that will prevent your handwriting from getting interrupted if you accidently place your palm on the screen as you write.

Surface with Windows 8 Pro will run current Windows 7 desktop applications, will weigh less than two pounds and be less than 14 millimeters thick.

Is Microsoft Surface Pro’s Price Too High?

International Business Times’ Lisa Eadicicco notes that Microsoft’s Surface for Windows RT hasn’t gotten off to a stellar start, with sales for this quarter expected to be fewer than 1M units, lower than initial predictions of between 1M and 2M, and Microsoft planning to introduce an even more expensive Surface Pro tablet next year.

Ms. Eadicicco says analysts have attributed weak sales of Microsoft’s Surface to its hefty price tag, and the Surface Pro will do little to alleviate this burden on users pockets with the device listing for $899 for the 64GB model and $999 for the 128GB edition – more than the price for many mid-range Windows 8 hybrid laptops which sell in the $600-$800 bracket, and that it’s also worth noting that the 64GB edition of Apple’s iPad with Retina Display, Wi-Fi and cellular runs users $820, which is $70 less than cheapest Surface Pro’s price. And while some argue that the Surface Pro is more likely to compete against lighter laptops such as the Macbook Air, the 11-inch MacBook Air with 64GB of storage costs the same as Microsoft’s entry level Surface Pro

She summarizes that basically, it all boils down to Microsofts Surface Pro not seeming impressive enough as a tablet or a notebook to compete, and its lofty price tag doesn’t help its case.

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