It was hard to believe the rumors that Microsoft is working on an 84-inch tablet at first, but when the company officially unveiled the Surface Hub, things started to make more sense. Designed almost exclusively for enterprise customers, the Surface Hub is meant to be used for advanced videoconferencing, and has actually drawn a lot of interest. Unfortunately, both the 55-inch and 84-inch versions of the device have been delayed again, with the a vague shipping date of “earlier next year” being given, and the price of both versions has been increased by $2,000 for new buyers. Customers who have already pre-ordered their Surface Hub(s) will still be able to pay the original price.
Microsoft’s Surface Hub videoconferencing systems are going to be pricier and slightly later than originally announced. In August, Microsoft officials said to expect the 55-inch Surface Hub model to be priced at $6,999 and the 84-inch model at $19,999. On December 22, officials said via an e-mailed statement that they are adjusting those prices to $8,999 and $21,999, respectively. Customers who already placed orders will still get the original pre-order prices, officials said today. Microsoft officials are not saying much as to why they upped the prices. The official statement is the company is “finalizing our manufacturing plan with a view towards delivering the best product experience.” “After evaluating the market opportunity and considering the unique collaboration scenarios Surface Hub offers, we believe these are the right prices to drive the business and the category forward,” according to a statement from a spokesperson. Microsoft officials also said last Fall the first Surface Hubs would ship starting January 1. That was a delay from the original target availability date of September 1, 2015. The new statement is “we are still on track to ship the first Surface Hub devices to customers earlier next year.” A spokesperson said the devices will begin shipping in the first calendar quarter of 2016.