Microsoft’s Surface 3 now available for sale

Surface 3 powered by Intel's Atom CPU and running Windows 8.1

On May 5, Microsoft’s Surface 3 is finally available for sale in the U.S., and pre-orders are also starting to arrive today. The new tablet running the full version of Windows 8.1 aims to be a lower cost device that replaces the previous versions running Windows RT 8.1.

The price for a Surface 3 starts at $499, but that is just the beginning, as the price will go up if you choose from different storage configurations. In addition, you will need the Type Cover and Surface Pen to make the device full functional. These accessories aren’t included and they are not cheap.

A Type Cover will add an extra $130 to the cost and the Surface Pen an additional $50. So, if you’re planning to get the base model, you’re looking to spend around $680.

Surface 3 is available for purchase in various retailers, including Amazon, Best Buy, and the Microsoft Store.

For the full technical specifications and comparison with the Surface Pro 3, check out my previous write-up here.

If you’re getting a Surface 3 today and you’re a Windows Insider, it’s recommended that you stick to Windows 8.1 for now. Microsoft still has a lot of work to do in Windows 10 to make it all work smoothly. For example, Windows 10 build 10074, it’s said that will cause some issues and the experience is not optimal.

While the software maker still has work to do with Windows 10, the company is on track to launch Windows 10 for desktop computers later this summer, and Surface 3 as well as the Surface Pro 3 will be getting the upgrade free.