Microsoft has finally announced the official pricing for their Surface tablets.

The Surface tablets will start with a base price of $499 for a model with 32GB storage. The 64GB variant will cost $699.

There is a version of the 32GB which includes the black touch cover which will cost shoppers $599.

The Microsoft Surface tablets have a slight advantage over the iPad from Apple in terms of pricing. With the iPad Mini expected to be revealed on October 23, 2012, this seems to be a strategic move on part of Microsoft to reveal the prices for their tablets.

Specifications for the Surface tablet are as follows :

OS : Windows RT

Dimensions: 10.81 x 6.77 x 0.37in

Storage : 32GB, 64GB

Display : 10.6″ ClearType HD Display with a resolution of 1366×768 pixels, aspect ratio of 16:9 (widescreen) and has 5-point multi-touch.

Connectivity : Wi-Fi (802.11a/b/g/n) and Bluetooth 4.0 technology

Camera : Two 720p HD LifeCams, front- and rear-facing

The apps included with the tablet will be: Microsoft Office Home and Student 2013 RT Preview1 (Word, PowerPoint, Excel, OneNote); Windows Mail and Messaging; SkyDrive; Internet Explorer 10; Bing; Xbox Music, Video, and Games.

The new Touch Cover is the prime attraction for the Surface Tablets, here are the details provided by Microsoft, “Touch Cover clicks in to Surface in an instant, and offers a sleek, spill-resistant exterior for working – no matter where you find yourself. When folded back, Touch Cover automatically disables keystrokes for a full touchscreen experience; when closed, it turns off your display.”

The Microsoft Surface Tablet will be released October 26, 2012. It is available for pre-ordering through the Microsoft store.