Microsoft’s Surface tablet has come on leaps and bounds since the first one landed back in 2012.
The improvements have evidently caught the attention of consumers, too, as the computer giant on Monday announced that revenue from sales of its tablet has for the first time exceeded a billion dollars for any of its reported financial quarters.
Sales during the final three months of 2014 saw Surface revenue hit $1.1 billion, marking an increase of 24 percent on a year earlier. The uptick in sales was put down to strong sales of its Surface Pro 3 slate, which launched in June last year and sells alongside the cheaper Surface 2.
While the company will undoubtedly be delighted at the Surface Pro 3’s performance – Microsoft did, after all, take a $900 million write-down on the Surface RT just a couple of years ago – matching Apple’s success with the iPad may be a challenge too far. The Cupertino company will report figures for the same quarter later today, though during Q3 last year iPad sales hit $5.3 billion, generating nearly five times more revenue than Microsoft’s rival offering.
Still, for Microsoft, income from Surface-related sales is heading in the right direction, and it’ll be hoping to build on the growing momentum with the launch of an updated version that could arrive in the coming months.
And it wasn’t just the Surface that performed well in Microsoft’s latest quarter – sales of its Lumia smartphones reached 10.5 million units, a new quarterly record for the Redmond-based company.
Microsoft’s revenue for the quarter reached $26.5 billion, exceeding analysts’ expectations. However, the company’s net income of $5.9 billion marked a 10.6 percent decline on the same quarter a year earlier.
The figures include a $243 million charge covering restructuring and integration costs linked in part to the purchase of Nokia’s handset business in September 2013.