The number of Microsoft Surface devices being sold in the wild has recently become a hotly contested topic of debate, especially in the face of new numbers emerging for its seemingly competitive brethren, the iPad Pro and Pixel C tablets.
Recently, an estimate from the research firm IDC, which tracks the worldwide shipment of tablets, claimed that Microsoft managed to sell roughly 1.6 million Surface tablets in its latest quarter.
A new report coming out of DigiTimes points to a Taiwan-based supply chain maker that claims that Microsoft shipped 2.5 million ‘Surface-series’ tablets in the fourth quarter of 2015. According to the Taiwanese company, the total shipments of tablets for the year are upwards of six million, beating its market expectations of four million. Keep in mind, ship and sold might be flexible terms for manufacturers, they are still two different metrics to track. Even though Microsoft managed to ship that many Surface devices, some may still be on the shelves ready and waiting to be sold. However it’s diced and examine, the overall theme appears to be a growing inflection point in the evolution of PC spending trends.
While the overall PC market is still in decline, it seems as though companies may be finding a pivot point with 2-in-1 convertibles or, as IDC calls them, ‘detchables.' During its most recent earnings call, Microsoft highlighted that Surface device shipments managed to increase by 29% year-over-year, proving that there is an apparent consumer or enterprise desire for the tablet.
As the desire for Surface devices steadily grows, it seems that Microsoft’s interest in expanding the category is growing as well. According to the same Taiwanese supply company responsible for the recent shipment numbers, “Microsoft has begun developing new Surface models in cooperation with supply chain makers, with new products likely to be unveiled in the second half of 2016.”
Based on these claims, it looks as though Microsoft may once again surprise its fans during another event in the fall where a possible ‘new’ Surface device gets added to the brand name.