$1.1 billion spent by web giant - but why? Here's all you need to know
Microsoft unveils new tablet price
Microsoft has announced the price of its new tablet
Microsoft says its first tablet computer, the Surface, will start at 499 dollars (£310) when it goes on sale October 26.
The price matches that of Apple's iPad, the most popular tablet computer, but the base model of the Surface has twice as much storage memory: 32 gigabytes.
The signature hardware feature of the tablet, a cover that doubles as a keyboard, will cost another 100 dollars (£62).
The launch of the Surface is an unusual move for Microsoft, which usually sells software to computer makers instead of making computers itself.
It coincides with the launch of Windows 8, a version of the operating system that is designed to work better on touch-screen computers and tablets.
The first version of the Surface does not have a regular Intel-style PC processor and will not run PC software.