Microsoft was expected to announce a Surface Mini device at an press event last year. But it never happened as Microsoft chose to announce only the Surface Pro 3 device. Later we reported that Microsoft decided to delay it for some reasons. Bloomberg then reported that Microsoft was not confident that the product offered enough differentiation from the competitors to release in the market. There were even reports that Surface Mini production was put on hold temporarily. Back in July, Microsoft confirmed the cancellation of the project via quarterly financial results. In the Computing and Gaming Hardware related slide, Microsoft mentioned that current year cost of revenue included Surface inventory adjustments resulting from their transition of production to latest Surface offering and a decision to not ship a new form factor.
Brad Sams from Neowin recently got the opportunity to try out the cancelled Surface Mini project when he visited Microsoft’s campus in Redmond. He confirmed that the rumored specs of the device were true.
- An 8-inch HD display
- Qualcomm Snapdragon processor
- 1GB RAM
- Windows RT 8.1
- USB and microSD card support
- Supports Stylus, similar to Surface Pro 3.
He also revealed that Surface Mini had a unique case unlike the Touch/Type covers we have seen in the past. He described it as follows,
This all sounds familiar but what makes the mini unique – besides the pen and OneNote integration – is the case that goes on the device. Microsoft designed a fantastic case that goes on the outside of the device that brings a couple of defining features to the mini tablet.
First off, the cases come in several different colors, much like the Type Covers, and includes a built in kickstand. At the end of the stand is the same loop that you can find with the Pro 3 to hold the pen. The front case cover is detachable but it is not a keyboard cover like you get with the Type 3. The space available would be too cramped to include a QWERTY. Instead, the attachable cover protects the front glass but the entire cover makes the tablet feel like a portfolio.
The front cover does not attach like it does on the Pro 3, instead, it has two little clips that insert into the case that hold the cover on firmly.
Read more about the device from the link below. If it was released to the market on time as originally planned, how many of you would have considered buying it? Let us know in the comments.