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Updated: Monday, 18 Jun 2012, 10:03 PM CDT
Published : Monday, 18 Jun 2012, 10:03 PM CDT
DAILY DOT COM - Microsoft finally had its Apple moment. Monday, the mystery of its big announcement was solved with the release of a new tablet called Surface.
The hush-hush event got off to a late start --about 45 minutes behind schedule. But one might say it was worth the wait.
The Surface is a PC tablet that runs on a yet-to-be released version of Microsoft's Windows 8 and RT.
CEO Steve Ballmer was on hand to announce the tablet; calling it part of a "whole new family of devices" the company is developing.
The 9.3 millimeter thick tablet comes with a kickstand to hold it upright and keyboard that is part of the device's cover. It weighs less than 1.5 pounds.
The Surface features many of the now-standard tablet specs, including a 10-inch touch screen, front and rear facing cameras. But also brings some new innovations to the tablet space. For example, it's the first PC tablet with a magnesium case. And so people can actually use their table like a computer, without some type of dock, the cover is also a magnetic full-blown keyboard with trackpad!
Another cool feature is the digital ink stylist or pen that clips on the device.
The general manager of the project, Panos Panay, said “It was important that the Windows software could rise to the surface."
There will be two different versions, a 32 and 64 gig --both will bring Netflix and Office.
The entire event was about an hour and 15min long. No Xbox integration and surprisingly, no pricing / availability information either. Microsoft said suggested pricing will be announced closer to availability of the device.
Based on the specs, and this is just a guess, the Surface is more in line with the iPad than say the Kindle and will probably fall somewhere along the price point of $499.
In producing its own tablet computer called Surface, Microsoft Corp. is entering a market dominated by Apple Inc. Six out of every 10 tablets shipped are iPads, according to research firm IHS iSuppli.
Here are the top five manufacturers of tablets last year:
To learn more about the Surface, click here.