At an event in Shanghai, China, Microsoft announced the all new Surface Pro 2017 laptop-tablet convertible. Successor to the Surface Pro 4, the new Surface Pro comes with the latest and the fastest hardware on board, a new operating system and a bigger battery that Microsoft claims will offer battery life of up to 13.5 hours. Prices start at $799 (approximately Rs 52,000) and goes all the way up to $2,699 (approximately Rs 175,300). The all new Surface Pro 2017 is set to go on sale starting June 15 in 25 countries across the globe, except India, and that is exactly where I have a problem. Also Read - PUBG New State receives over 17 million pre-registrations as closed alpha testing endsAlso Read - iPhone selling in LG stores? Apple is apparently in talks for a new deal
As a user, I m more than excited about the Surface Pro 2017. It s a tablet, it s a laptop, its powerful, it supports Surface Pen and Surface Dial. With Intel s seventh generation processors on-board with up to 16GB of RAM and fan-less system, Surface Pro 2017 is as powerful as a top-end laptop. Also Read - Windows 11 could be a free upgrade for you provided you fall in this category
Sure, a couple of years ago, Microsoft products used to initially go on sale in the US, and later make their way to other markets over the next few months. That has changed, and the new Surface Pro 2017 will be simultaneously launching in multiple markets across the globe, including Australia, China, Hong Kong, Taiwan and New Zealand among others. While most Asian countries have made it to the first wave of the launch cycle, it is surprising how India didn t make the cut. And there are more than a couple of reasons to be surprised. ALSO READ: Microsoft Surface Pro 2017 vs Microsoft Surface Pro 4: Here s what all has changed
India has the second-largest developer base outside the US
Tech companies are incomplete without developers, and India hosts the second-largest developer base outside the US. A lot of development work, in terms of coding, testing, bug-fixing and support. We have incubators, we have start-ups, IT firms, and a fast and portable computing solution is exactly what they need to ensure productivity.
Companies like Apple and Microsoft have time and again highlighted that fact that India is an important market for them. But if the latest product launch plans are to be factored in, it paints a completely different picture altogether. Also, the software giant s CEO Satya Nadella has roots in India, and then again, the Indian market gets ignored.
Sure, Microsoft has been focusing on the enterprise audience with its products and services, but the consumers, like me, are forced to settle on something else, or look for ways to get them imported from abroad. ALSO READ: Microsoft India kickstarts Project Sangam , an MoU on telecom skill development
Apple, on the other hand, has also been claiming that India is one of the key markets for the company. And when it comes to Apple products launch, be it iPhones, iPads, or even the latest MacBooks with Touch Bar, the Cupertino giant has been doing everything to ensure there s isn t much delay between the US and India launch. In fact, the launch window for India has come down to less than a month compared to when Apple products go on sale in the US.
No word on Surface Laptop either
The Surface Pro series is placed in the expensive price bracket, but that s not the case with the Surface Laptop right? Microsoft has been touting about the Surface Laptop as an affordable laptop focused on the education segment. Running on Windows 10 S operating system and allowing users to only download and install apps from Microsoft Store, the Surface Laptop has also been termed as a secured laptop. ALSO READ: Microsoft Surface Pro 2017 with Intel Kaby Lake processor launched: Specifications and features
In a country like India, where the student population is good, there are hardly any good laptop options available out there. I feel the launch of Surface Laptop in India could really be a good move, but it saddens me to see that Microsoft isn t even considering India launch plans yet, at least not something that it has mentioned yet.
China gets special edition of Windows 10
Forget about product launch, Microsoft also went ahead to announce a special version of Windows 10 for China market. Microsoft has made a Chinese government approved version equipped with additional security and device management controls. Sure, it may not be a good news for end-users and the special Windows 10 version will allow the Chinese government to keep a close tab on users. But, at least there is something Microsoft is doing different targeted towards a specific market. A special India focused version could have been appreciated too.
The Surface Book, even after over a year since launch, is yet to make its way to India. I really hope Microsoft considers its India launch plans for future hardware products, and not just software product initiatives. It remains to be seen if at all products like the Surface Laptop, Surface Studio and Surface Book ever make their way to India.