Analyst confirms Microsoft Surface RT sales are less-than-stellar

Posted by Shane McGlaun

Microsoft has been having somewhat of a difficult time convincing the masses to abandon Android and Apple for its Surface RT tablet which is being heavily marketed both on TV and online.

Now as we've previously discussed, Microsoft has consistently blamed the lack of sales on poor distribution, although Redmond has made a valiant effort to address this very issue by allowing third-party companies to sell the tablet over the past few weeks. Nevertheless, despite additional sales avenues, Microsoft failed to move as many Surface RT tablet as analysts initially anticipated.

Indeed, it appears as if the Surface RT tablet only sold 1 million units during the Q4 2012, despite the frenetic holiday shopping season. Interestingly, UBS analyst Brent Thill said that he originally expected Microsoft to sell 2 million of the Surface RT tablets, yet he believes consumers are choosing the iPad over the Surface RT tablet.

Thill notes that Microsoft only allowed third-party stores to begin selling the Surface RT tablet midway through December, when the device landed at Best Buy and Staples locations.

Of course, Microsoft has yet to reveal official sales figures for the Surface RT tablet, but we do know that Samsung recently decided to postpone the roll out of its own Windows RT tablet in the United States. However, the industry heavyweight emphasized it was leaving the door open to launch the device in the US at a later date when the market becomes more amenable.

Interestingly, Thill believes Microsoft stands a definite chance with its Surface Pro tablet which is slated to launch later this month with a starting price of $899. The x86 version of the tablet is loaded with the standard version of Windows 8, allowing it to run traditional desktop software.