Microsoft announces Surface launch

The machine is being made available via the web for consumers from the UK, US, Canada, France, Germany, China and Australia and is being promoted as the ultimate stage for Windows RT.

Microsoft said the computer – which costs $499 (£311) – represents exceptional value for money, providing an all-round entertainment experience and “a foundation for getting things done”.

The products include a number of accessories, including Touch Covers in different colours – white, black, red, magenta and cyan.

These cost $119.99 and allow people to put their individual spin on the computers, while a Type Cover in black will set buyers back $129.99 and includes moving keys to offer a more traditional feel for typing.

Surface was first unveiled in June and is being advertised as an extension of the Windows experience that enables users to work, play and connect with others, with its durable casing and low weight making it easily portable and suitable for those who like to work on the go.