After a large company releases a much-anticipated new product, the public relations department should have time to rest and enjoy a job well done; unless of course you do this job for Microsoft. Ballmer is at it again, using the wrong words in the wrong place at the wrong time and describing sales of their new Surface tablet to Le Parisien as “modest.” Although that isn’t quite what he meant… apparently.
Ballmer went on to discuss how he expects sales to “ramp up quickly” and tried to generate enthusiasm over the higher-powered Surface Pro version of their tabled that has “a higher-resolution screen and [is] powered by a new Intel processor.” Not surprisingly, Ballmer made no reference to the equally ‘higher-powered’ price-tag that is expected to accompany these increased specifications.
Microsoft’s official statement (regarding Ballmer’s not-so-official statement):
“When asked about Surface, Steve’s use of the term “modest” was in relation to the company’s approach in ramping up supply and distribution of Surface with Windows RT, which has only been available via our online store and certain Microsoft retail stores in the U.S. While our approach has been modest, Steve notes the reception to the device has been “fantastic” which is why he also stated that “soon, it will be available in more countries and in more stores.”
Loosely translated, I think it means that ‘Steve’ shouldn’t be allowed to speak in public ever again.
Once we see the official sales figures we should know more, but Microsoft certainly isn’t seeing the kinds of sales successes that Apple has with over 2 million iPad Mini tablets sold in the first week alone.