Surface Mini was originally supposed to debut in the fall of 2013. In a report that Neowin revealed, the delay was due to production issues. Surface 2 and Surface Pro 2 were largely unavailable during the peak holiday season late last year and in even through online stores. It didn’t make sense to have a similar problem with a newly launched class of device, it was postponed until what is recently rumoured to be a June 2014 release, and according to Paul Thurrott, the device is unchanged from the one planned to be released in late 2013 and there may be an additional Surface device revealed on the May 20th Surface event in NYC.
To be a real differentiator, Microsoft intends to make the Surface Mini be the “the best note taking device”. Its set to include a stylus, similar to the one on the Surface Pro which includes a Wacom digitizer or something of equivalent functionality, making the pen input very accurate. The note taking will revolve around Microsoft’s OneNote app that is part of the Office suite, it will possibly have OneNote integrated throughout the OS more prominently and redesigned to work better on a smaller screen.
The hardware is rumored to maintain the high quality offering the larger Surface tablets possess, using the Magnesium (VapourMG) casing and have the same design language. It will have a multi position kickstand, including a click in cover like its siblings, and run on an ARM chipset with Windows RT.
So far no other small tablet on the market offers fully functional stylus support, and if Microsoft gets it right with the Mini it can be a very compelling device for note takers and people using Microsoft’s services looking for a small tablet. There are no rumors on pricing, but it is expected that the Surface Mini will be at the higher end of smaller tablet pricing like the iPad Mini.