Surface Giveaway Goes On: Microsoft Offers WPC Attendees Deeply Discounted Tablet PCs


Microsoft is offering heavily discounted Microsoft Surface tablet PCs to attendees of the upcoming Worldwide Partner Conference, the company said Thursday.

During the July 7 through 11 span of WPC in Houston, attendees will be able to purchase the Surface RT with 64 GB and touch cover for $99.99 and the Surface Pro with 128 GB as a standalone for $399.99, said Jon Roskill, Microsoft corporate vice president and head of the worldwide partner group, in a blog post.

Best Buy is currently selling the Surface RT with 32GB for $499.99 ($599.99 with the Touch Cover) and the Surface Pro with 64GB for $899.99.

 

[Related: The Windows RT Effect]

The move follows an offer earlier this week from Microsoft to provide free Surface RT tablets to as many as 10,000 teachers attending this month's International Society for Technology in Education conference. And between now and Aug. 31, K-12 schools and colleges can buy Surface RT tablets with 32 GB for $199 ($249 with the touch cover.)

Microsoft also offered discounted Surface tablets to attendees of its recent TechEd conference, although that offer was limited to one per attendee.

Microsoft is believed to have huge inventories of unsold Surface tablets, especially those running Windows RT -- as many as 4 million units, according to some reports. All these discounted offers have generated speculation that Microsoft is readying a new generation of Surface tablets and the company is seeking ways to unload the products it has on hand.

"We want to make the Surface easily available to our WPC partners, who tend to be some of the most invested and innovative partners Microsoft has the pleasure of working with," Roskill said in his blog. "In deep appreciation of our WPC partners and with much excitement for the opportunities we share in devices and services, we are excited to announce a special offer for WPC partner participants."

Microsoft began shipping the Surface tablet with the Windows RT operating system back in October and there have been reports that the product has not been selling well. Earlier this year Microsoft began selling the Surface Pro with Windows 8.

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