Microsoft is going all in on its Surface tablets.
Microsoft has placed an order with Asian component suppliers to build 3 million to 5 million Surface tablets for this quarter, according to a report by The Wall Street Journal (WSJ).
The company will launch its Surface tablets and Windows 8 on Oct. 26.
Mass production of the Surface tablets began earlier this month, the WSJ report said.
The device, which is 9.3 millimeters thick and weighs 1.5 pounds, is similar in size to Apple’s iPad at 9.4 millimeters thick and weighing 1.44 pounds. The tablet has a 10.6-inch display, a built-in kickstand and a magnetic cover that doubles as a touch keyboard. The new device will run on the Windows 8 operating system.
Microsoft revealed the pricing of the tablet Oct. 16, temporarily opening its online store to show pre-order pricing, which starts at $499 for the 32GB version. Adding in the black multi-touch TouchCover keyboard case will bump the price to $599. The 64GB version with a black TouchCover keyboard wil retail at $699. Additional TouchCovers in a variety of colours will be $100 each and the TypeCover keyboard will have a $129 price tag.
Microsoft is jockeying for a firm position in the raging tablet war. Although Apple and Google are the dominant players, Amazon, Lenovo and Barnes & Noble have also entered the fray.