Frost & Sullivan On Surface Pro 3

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Editor’s note: Harsh Upadhyay, an Industry Analyst from Frost & Sullivan gave his views on the Surface Pro 3 after its launch. He talks about its positioning in the current market, its strength and a forecast of how it’d fare.

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The Surface Pro 3 comes up as a very strong contender in hybrid devices category. Launched yesterday across 25 countries, the device aims to replace tablets and laptops. It offers very good processing power in its category despite a thin and light body. Aspect ratio (3:2) has been given due importance while building the bigger, sharper screen. The device provides Wi-Fi as the connectivity option, but adding a sim-card slot would have proposed additional value to the users. Accessories such as detachable keyboard and pen make the package better, though $130 extra for the accessories adds a lot to the cost. The pen works quite impressively with its functional buttons, ability to convey 256 pressure points, and simultaneous use with palm on screen. The flexible kick-stand and pen loop on keyboard enhance the user convenience.

Going beyond the device, what is much appreciated is the background and strategic work done by Microsoft. As per the end-user research done by the company in Asia Pacific, more than 70% of working professionals wish to get a single device that gives the best of a laptop and a tablet. Responding to this fact, Microsoft positioned Surface Pro 3 as a combined replacement for tablets and laptops. MDM, BYOD, mobility, security are amongst the key CIO priorities today, and this makes the current market scenario well suited to the launch of this product. Various use cases depicted by Microsoft propose the use of this device in a SMB set-up and across multiple verticals. The device aesthetics and powerful performance lure the consumers as well. Microsoft heard the voice of customer, feedback from the market, learnt from its previous mistakes, and used the inputs to come up with this product.

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Surface Pro 3 has been launched in all key geographies, with appropriate sales & service channels set-up and trained. The price for device is bit on the higher side compared to its rivals, which might create a challenge in its uptake. Another challenge that might come up is the competition from OEMs who are already established in hybrid device market, and offer products at a lower cost.

To ensure the success of Surface Pro 3, Microsoft must remain effective in its marketing communications. Enterprise and consumer segment should be targeted with different propositions. As the device is new to the market, there might be some bugs in its functioning. Microsoft must ensure that these bugs are proactively detected and solved.

Keeping in mind the market situation and this well groomed product by Microsoft, it would be right to mention that Surface Pro 3 is definitely evolutionary, if not revolutionary. Proposing hybrid devices as a replacement for tablets and mobile is not new in the market. However, the changing dynamics make the user more ready to adopt to this change now. It would not be surprising if Microsoft makes a strong comeback and increases market share in devices arena with Surface Pro 3.