IT Pro is supported by its audience. When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more

Microsoft CEO admits making too many Surface RT tablets

Sequel being prepped and MS is also gunning after quality apps for its Store.

Microsoft Surface RT

Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer has admitted the firm committed to manufacturing too many Surface RT tablets, as he tried to explain the firm's recent $900 million write-down.

"We built a few more devices than we could sell," Ballmer is reported to have told employees at the Microsoft campus.

Taking into account the recent 30 per cent price cut per unit ($150) and the size of the write-down ($900 million), a rudimentary calculation suggested that Microsoft has around six million tablets sitting around unsold.

Ballmer also discussed the importance of bringing more popular applications into its Windows Store, with Instagram being named checked. He also confirmed that successors to the Surface range are being tested.

The CEO acknowledged Microsoft was "not selling as many Windows devices as we want to" across the board, despite the firm publically talking up sales of the latest OS. 

The software giant post a revenue of $19.9 billion during the second quarter. This was $850 million short of Wall Street's expectations, and Microsoft blamed the increasing shifts from traditional PCs to other form factors such as tablets.

One of the reasons Microsoft may not have sold as many units as it would have liked is because the firm shunned the channel in favour of selling the tablet directly to customers through its website.

This is something Amy Hood, Microsoft's chief financial officer said would be addressed in the coming months.

"We [have] expanded the availability of Surface to our business and institutional...[and] commercial customers are able to purchase Surface devices from authorised resellers in the US," she told analysts during a recent earnings call.

"Over the next few months we will authorise commercial distributors and resellers in more countries [to do the same]."

Featured Resources

The state of Salesforce: Future of business

Three articles that look forward into the changing state of Salesforce and the future of business

Free Download

The mighty struggle to migrate SAP to the cloud may be over

A simplified and unified approach to delivering Enterprise Transformation in the cloud

Free Download

The business value of the transformative mainframe

Modernising on the mainframe

Free Download

The Total Economic Impact™ Of IBM FlashSystem

Cost savings and business benefits enabled by FlashSystem

Free Download

Recommended

16 ways to speed up your laptop
Laptops

16 ways to speed up your laptop

13 May 2022
How to virtualise Windows 7 inside Windows 10
Microsoft Windows

How to virtualise Windows 7 inside Windows 10

9 Sep 2021

Most Popular

Cyber attack on software supplier causes "major outage" across the NHS
cyber attacks

Cyber attack on software supplier causes "major outage" across the NHS

8 Aug 2022
Why convenience is the biggest threat to your security
Sponsored

Why convenience is the biggest threat to your security

8 Aug 2022
How to boot Windows 11 in Safe Mode
Microsoft Windows

How to boot Windows 11 in Safe Mode

29 Jul 2022