Slow tablet sales send Microsoft skyhigh

Microsoft CEO threatens to punch anyone who says his tablet is inferior to an iPad.
Microsoft CEO threatens to punch anyone who says his tablet is inferior to an iPad.

Microsoft’s surface tablets have performed a lot worse than expected. This sentence is definitely true in regards to sales, and probably true when it comes to the user experience for people who bought one.

However, that’s not the main point here. The main point is that the company have already built way more of them that they look likely to sell any time soon. Six million too many of the little beggars, to be precise.

Figures like these always have journalists talking about companies ‘stockpiling’ and ‘sitting on a massive surplus’ of the thing in question.

It works – it’s good, active language, where Microsoft is doing something to the object in question.

Analysing the sentences with a little bit of maths can make for a bit of fun.

Take the idea of Microsoft sitting on the tablets, for example.

The tablets come in two types that are 0.53 and 0.37 inches thick, respectively. Assuming we’ve got the exact same number of each, you have six million tablets that are 0,45 inches thick, giving you 2.7 million inches of tablet. Let’s convert that to metric units (because inches and feet are stupid): 1 inch = 0.0254 metres means that Microsoft are sitting on 68580 metres of tablets, placing it solidly in the middle of Earth’s Mesosphere.

The air temperature in the Mesosphere can drop below -100 Celsius, but hey, at least the view is good – and they got there before Apple….


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