Microsoft's Surface tablets: A trip down memory lane, via AppleJuly 20, 2013: 10:22 AM ET
Should we be surprised Microsoft had to write off $900 million in unsold tablets?
FORTUNE -- I don't spend a lot of time writing about Microsoft (MSFT) these days, but the company's re-entry into the tablet market last summer felt like news I should be covering.
After all, Apple (AAPL) had succeeded where Microsoft had, for so many years, failed. And now Redmond was back, gunning for the iPad.
So I watched Microsoft introduce the Surface RT and the Surface Pro last June, curious to see what they might mean for Apple, and I wrote a series of blog posts tracking the progress of the new devices.
Now that we have solid evidence -- in the $900 million write-down Microsoft announced Thursday to account for unsold Surface RTs -- that the company's latest forays into the tablet market have been less than a stellar success, this may be a good time (and the perhaps the only time) to look back at my Surface stories.
In chronological order:
- Video: Microsoft unveils its answer to Apple's iPad. " It's easy to forget that Bill Gates announced the specs for Microsoft's first tablet computer in 2001, nearly a decade before Apple came out with the iPad." June 19, 2012
- Microsoft's new tablet: The unseemly chortling of the Apple partisans. "The Surface is greeted with guffaws and catcalls from a camp that ought to know better." June 19, 2o12
- Gartner sees Microsoft stealing market share from Apple. "By 2016, it predicted in April, Windows 8 will be No. 3 in tablets and No. 2 in smartphones." June 20, 2012
- Why Microsoft is building its own tablet computers. "There is no longer enough profit, writes John Gruber, in selling software alone." June 21, 2012
- Apple lovers kick Microsoft's Surface while it's down: "One minute and 18 seconds of awkwardness draws millions of viewers on YouTube." June 22, 2012
- Poll: Which comes first, Microsoft's Surface or Apple's television set? "One is vaporware. The other a rumor." June 25, 2012.
- Macalope v. Winotaur on the Microsoft Surface: "WINOTAUR: You're just upset because now we're the most exciting company in tech. MACALOPE: Uh-huh." June 26, 2012
- 11 Apple iPads per hour vs. zero Microsoft Surface tablets: "A survey compared sales at an Apple Store and a Microsoft Store in the Mall of America." Nov. 26, 2012
- Interest in the Surface fell 53% after its price was announced: "Meanwhile, 44% of tablet shoppers plan to buy an iPad versus 24% for Kindle Fire." Dec. 13, 2012
- Microsoft's Surface Pro: The reviews are in: "The verdicts range from 'magnificent, a classic' to 'hefty and costly and power-hungry.'" Feb. 8, 2013