Leading up to last month’s Surface Pro 3 launch event, we were very much expecting to see the Surface Mini, instead. Really, that’s what we expected the main focus to be, and it wasn’t until just about a week prior to the announcement that we started getting the sense that this was going to be a Pro 3 shindig. If we’re to believe the rumors, there’s a good reason we were getting that Mini vibe, and it was a pretty last-minute decision to not introduce the Mini. While Microsoft hasn’t formally confirmed that was the case, it’s hard to look at the recently released Surface Pro 3 user’s guide and not come away thinking that Microsoft still has the Surface Mini on the brain, as the document makes multiple mentions of the unannounced tablet.
There’s no telling how much longer this error-ridden document will stay live on Microsoft’s servers, but the copy we pulled down to investigate this story contains a handful of lines that clearly identify the Surface Mini. All the references seem tied to descriptions of the tablet’s stylus, as if Microsoft pulled these sections from the Surface Mini’s documentation but failed to properly change all the names.
This doesn’t really put us any closer to learning when the Surface Mini might ultimately debut (last we heard suggested a fall launch could be in the cards), but this still a pretty interesting discovery, both as confirmation of the tablet’s (near) existence, and because it’s always a little fun to see the companies that go to such lengths to keep unannounced products secret make such obvious, public mistakes.