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Surface Mini came very close to launching, Microsoft exec reveals

by Jacob Kleinman | October 27, 2015October 27, 2015 12:00 pm PST

Microsoft’s rumored Surface Mini never saw the light of day, but it turns out the company came even closer to launching the device than we thought. In an interview with Wired, Microsfot executive Panos Panay revealed that he actually used a version of the tablet and loved it.

“It was awesome,” said Panay, who runs Microsoft’s Surface business. He also reveals that the device worked with a Surface Pen, noting that the experience was like using a Moleskine notebook. Unfortunately, the Surface Mini never made it past internal testing.

In an earnings report last summer, the company confirmed that it had scrapped plans for a “new form factor” from its Surface division. The small tablet even popped up in an official user manual, suggesting the company was ready to ship Surface Mini.

At this point it’s pretty unlikely the Surface Mini will ever launch. The rise of big-screened smartphones like the Lumia 950 XL means there’s less of a reason to pick up a smaller tablet. Most companies, Microsoft included, seem more interested in releasing larger models that can compete with full-fledged computers instead.

We’d still love to see the Surface Mini in action. If Panos Panay liked it that much, we definitely wouldn’t mind trying one out for ourselves.

Wired BI

Jacob Kleinman

Jacob Kleinman has been working as a journalist online and in print since he arrived at Wesleyan University in 2007. After graduating, he took a...