Even as Microsoft refreshed its lineup of first-party hardware with updated specs earlier this month, at Canalys' annual Channels Forum, the CEO of the market research firm - Steve Brazier - is sticking by his prediction from last year that the Surface line is on its death bed.
At the conference last year, Brazier claimed it didn't make sense for Microsoft to continue to build first-party hardware given that Surface was apparently causing the company to lose money. His claims at the time were backed by Lenovo's COO and Dell's Darius Hess.
Brazier reiterated those claims again this month, and said the company would be far better served by focusing on other ventures: "It would be much more sensible for Microsoft to stop spending money on Surface and focus on its cloud and application business where it's doing really well."
His prediction from last year banked on Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella's apparent willingness to shutter loss leaders, as evidenced by his closure of Groove and the Nokia write-off. He labelled Nadella to be a "software guy, a cloud guy".
The market analyst still holds faith in his understanding of Nadella's thinking, claiming, "I think [Satya Nadella] will get to that conclusion. It may need them to have a choppy quarter or two before he pulls the plug."
Despite these rather ominous claims by Brazier, there's no sign the Surface line is going to die off anytime soon. It just broke into the top 5 PC makers in the U.S. last quarter, and Microsoft has already announced its plans to launch Surface Hub successors in 2019 and 2020. Microsoft's hardware guru, Panos Panay, has also made it clear that the company wants to explore innovating with even more hardware form factors, and referred to a foldable Surface device as his 'baby'. Panay also rubbished Brazier's claims last year, brushing them aside as "tabloid rumour".
Source: The Register