Microsoft Sold $853 Million in Surface Tablets

Microsoft Corp. sold $853 million worth of Surface tablets in its latest fiscal year, as the maker of Windows software struggles to capitalize on a shift by consumers toward handheld devices.

Microsoft disclosed Surface sales, which weren’t specified in the company’s latest earnings report, in a regulatory filing today.

Earnings in the period that ended in June were hit by a $900 million writedown of inventory related to Surface, a mobile touch-screen computer introduced by Microsoft in October to compete with Apple Inc.’s iPad and tablets running Google Inc.’s Android operating system.

Windows sales have been besieged by poor demand for PCs, reflected in five consecutive quarters of declining shipments, according to researcher IDC.

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