Microsoft Getting Into Tablet Game, Unveils iPad Rival Surface

The business media rumor mill can be put to rest. Microsoft made it official today with the unveiling of its Microsoft Surface Windows 8 tablet. Windows president Steve Sinofsky said today at a media gathering in Los Angeles that the specs include a 10.6-inch widescreen display custom-designed for Surface. “Surface works great for entertainment,” Sinofsky said. Will it be successful and a potent challenger to rival Apple’s iPad? It’s a big shift for Microsoft, which has focused on workplace software — the exception being its successful Xbox gaming console. It’s also previously seen failures selling its own branded hardware, i.e., its Zune music players. Regardless, the move would be a page-turner for the company and a clear follow in Apple’s footsteps in controlling both hardware and software for its devices. Microsoft has traditionally let its customers — such as Dell and HP — handle design and marketing of its hardware.

(Steve Ballmer photo: Getty Images) 

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