Microsoft Surface, an upcoming Windows 8 tablet, breaks from Microsoft's decades-old tradition of relying on outside partners to manufacture the actual devices that run its software. Microsoft developed the Surface itself, in secret, working on the project for several years before unveiling it this week.
"We believe that any intersection between human and machine can be made better when all aspects, hardware and software, are working together," Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer said at the launch event. "Microsoft founders Bill Gates and Paul Allen made a big bet -- a bet on software -- but it was always clear that we had to push hardware in ways that sometimes manufacturers hadn't envisioned."
Microsoft designed its own PC for the first time in its nearly 40-year history.
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