What do you think Microsofts motivations/intentions are regarding surface and its partners?
There seem to be two minds that are dominant in the forums so far. The first is that Microsoft looked around at its partners and said, screw you all, I am slipping ahead with my own hardware to take all the spoils. This gif posted in another verge comment sums that scenario up nicely:
Is THAT microsofts intent? I don't know, but it would be pretty hilarious if it was.
The second main possibility thrown about is that this move was to light a fire under the OEMs like DELL/HP/ACER/etc.
In this light microsoft performs an intervention of sorts and confronts the wayward hardware children under its aegis and dares them to do better. Is that what's going on? Is microsoft trying to be like a Captain Pike kickstarting a screw up Kirk to get his act together?
Star Trek 2009 "I dare you to do better" (via vanzahn)
I don't know the answers to these questions, but if the hardware partners got as little heads up as has been reported, I don't see how they are going to be able to put out something competitive in the near future.