Microsoft crows new Surfaces are selling out, but numbers are missing

Surface 2
From dud to preorder stud?

The follow-up to the tablet that forced Microsoft into a multimillion dollar write-off isn't even in stores yet, and already its developer division is crowing about the new models selling out.

Microsoft's official Twitter account for developers issued a heads up this morning about current inventory levels for the company's latest Windows RT 8.1 and Windows 8.1 tablets.

"Surface 2 and Surface Pro 2 are close to selling out," the tweet cautioned, adding that "all those buys are gonna need apps" to run on the devices.

The Microsoft Developer tweet doesn't elaborate on how many second-generation tablets the company has produced or what numbers might be necessary to achieve "close to selling out" status.

History repeating?

Considering Microsoft still can't unload the previous generation Surface RT and Surface Pro models released last fall, the tweet is a bit of a head scratcher indeed.

Back in July, the company announced it was taking a $900 million (about £561m, AU$954m) write-off because of excess inventory on the original Surface tablets, which had only generated $853 million (about £532m, AU$904m) in revenue to date.

The first-gen tablets continue to be sold at discounted prices, complete with a heavy advertising campaign that points out the shortcomings of its main competitor, Apple's iPad, which lacks a kickstand, USB port and officially sanctioned keyboard cover.

Surface 2 and Surface Pro 2 pre-orders have been ongoing since Sept. 24, but the slates won't become available in retail stores until Oct. 22, only days after the latest Windows 8.1 is made available to the public.

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