Microsoft is hosting an event in New York City on September 23 to reveal the next iteration of the Surface, its tablet.
In anticipation of the next Surface, drips of news have been coming out about the next version of the Surface.
Paul Thurott at Microsoft-centric WinSuperSite, says, "Surface 2 will look and work almost identically to its predecessor but feature a faster TEGRA 4 processor and a 1080p screen."
Tom Warren at The Verge says, "We're toldthat the Surface 2 and Surface Pro 2 will include a two-stage kickstand, but the main design of both tablets will remain very similar to the existing models."
These reports should stop everyone — especially people at Microsoft — dead in their tracks. As the old cliche goes, the definition of insanity is releasing the Surface two years in a row with only minor changes and expecting a different result.
The original Surface was a failure. Changing the screen resolution and tweaking the kickstand aren't going to change a thing. Microsoft needs better hardware, better software, and better marketing.
After Microsoft took the charge, we didn't see or hear a single explanation from the company about why it thought the Surface failed, or what it was going to do to change things.
Instead, all we heard was that Microsoft isn't quitting on the tablet business. Well, duh, Microsoft has no choice. It has to continue with the tablet business.
Google has effectively destroyed the old Windows business model. Google gives away Android for free. Microsoft charges for Windows. Hardware makers, which barely eek out any profits, are going to choose free. Especially since Android is a hit with consumers, and Windows mobile efforts have failed to gain traction.
As tablets replace PCs, Android will replace Windows, sucking out a big chunk of Microsoft's profits.
That's why Microsoft has to sell the Surface. It has to hope to hit an Apple-like home run and start making a bunch of money selling tablets. Because selling an operating system is not going to lead to big growth thanks to Google's free operating system.
That's what makes the news that Microsoft isn't changing the Surface all the more scary. Microsoft has to build a successful tablet business, but it doesn't seem to have any new ideas.