Microsoft will stop making the Surface 3 by the end of the year

The Microsoft Surface 3.

The Surface 3 launched in May last year as a cheap and lightweight option for 2-in-1 lovers, but it seems Microsoft has had enough of it already. "By the end of December 2016, we will no longer manufacture Surface 3 devices," a spokesperson told ZDNet in a statement.

That means you should snap up one quick if you're interested in a Windows 10 slate at a low-ish price and it also suggests the Redmond company might have a few more new Surface models in the pipeline, although it's staying quiet on that front for now.

The rumour is that the next big Windows 10 update, codenamed Redstone 2, is scheduled for a spring 2017 release - and it could be at that point that Microsoft decides unveil a new batch of Surface 2-in-1s, replacing the soon-to-be-extinct Surface 3 at the same time.

"Strong demand"

Microsoft says there has been "strong demand and satisfaction amongst our customers" as far as the Surface 3 goes, and the device apparently accounts for just over a fifth of all the Surfaces sold. Low sales doesn't appear to be the reason the plug is being pulled.

"In some ways the entry-level Surface 3 is the most appealing yet - particularly in terms of damage to your wallet," we wrote last summer when the device launched. Microsoft will be wanting to repeat that value-for-money formula with whatever hardware comes next.

Stock is also running low of the Microsoft Band 2 fitness tracker, but so far the company hasn't said anything about ceasing production or replacing this particular device. If Microsoft is holding back for its next software updates to be ready, then we might have some time to wait.

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David Nield
Freelance Contributor

Dave is a freelance tech journalist who has been writing about gadgets, apps and the web for more than two decades. Based out of Stockport, England, on TechRadar you'll find him covering news, features and reviews, particularly for phones, tablets and wearables. Working to ensure our breaking news coverage is the best in the business over weekends, David also has bylines at Gizmodo, T3, PopSci and a few other places besides, as well as being many years editing the likes of PC Explorer and The Hardware Handbook.