Remember the iPad Keyboard?
Just had a thought after hearing them talk about Surface 2 on the Vergecast. When the iPad was announced they launched a keyboard dock along with it. And fully optimized tablet iWork apps. Now I do think the keyboard cover was a better implementation but the idea was the same. Two modes. They even talked about this at the iPad event.
My point is not that Apple was first with the concept of two modes (though they were) but that a major feature of the Surface has been designed into the iPad from the start as well. I think Apple just realized that people choose to use tablets in a different way.
I think that the Surface hasn't done well indicates that people don't want or need a multipurpose device. For most a tablet is enough. For the rest we still have full featured computers. I don't think the Surface 2 will change that.