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Microsoft accidentally sells, then swiftly pulls, new Surface docking station

Looking to buy a docking station for your Surface Pro or Surface Pro 2 tablet? You should have been a little quicker on the trigger.

According to recent reports, Microsoft allegedly made said docking station available at its online store last week. The catch? It's not supposed to hit the market until early next year, at the earliest.

This blink-and-you-missed-it deal was caught by a few eagle-eyed shoppers and, as reported by ZDNet's Mary Jo Foley, some people were able to pick up a docking station sans issue and even send in picture of their purchase.

If you're looking to score a docking station for yourself, we have bad news for you – at least, as of the time of this article's writing. Right now, hitting up the official Docking Station page on Microsoft's online store gives you a super-quick button that says "Add to cart," which is almost immediately replaced by a much sadder, grey "Out of stock" button.

Which is to say, no docking station for you.

We don't really have a great remedy for you, save for suggesting that you might want to meticulously check Microsoft's site on a daily basis if you're looking to take advantage of one of its brief purchasing windows. This setup was recently confirmed by Foley who, in speaking to Windows SuperSite's Paul Thurrott, learned that Microsoft plans to release the Docking Station in fairly limited quantities – at apparently undisclosed timeframes – ahead of the product's main launch next year.

Additionally, there's no word from Microsoft as to when the next batch of docking stations might go on sale via the company's official site. At Microsoft, mum is apparently the word.

The docking station itself retails for a cool $200 (£124). With it, you can charge the battery of your Surface Pro or Surface Pro 2 tablets while you work. Additionally, it allows you to bestow a wired Ethernet connection upon your tablet device – something you won't normally be able to do with the Surface Pro or Surface Pro 2, given that both lack an Ethernet connection of their own.

The docking station also comes with both USB 2.0 and USB 3.0 connections, if you're keen on getting your tablet to work with a ton of different accessories or, even better, a high-speed, USB 3.0-friendly external drive. A mini-DisplayPort connection built into the Docking Station also helps you output that which you're viewing on your tablet to a larger device – like a monitor, a television, or what-have-you.