Thu. Jun 13th, 2024

Microsoft revealed an updated Surface Pro 10 earlier this year, but it was aimed entirely at business customers. Now, there’s a new Surface Pro for the rest of us, powered by Qualcomm’s new Snapdragon chips.

Microsoft just revealed the “all-new Surface Pro,” ditching the model numbers that have been used over the past decade (though the product page web address does say “11th edition”). It’s still a Windows tablet with a detachable keyboard and stylus support, like previous models, but under the surface (heh) there are some drastic changes. The Surface Pro 10 will remain the recommended option for business customers, at least for now.

The new Surface Pro ships with either Snapdragon X Elite or Snapdragon X Plus chipsets, instead of the Intel processors used in all previous Surface Pro models (except select 5G variants). It’s also part of the first wave of Copilot Plus PCs, meaning it can run newer AI features in Windows like Recall and more Windows Studio Effects. Microsoft says the new Surface Pro is “90% faster than Surface Pro 9,” though it’s not clear if that is referring to the Snapdragon X Plus model, the Snapdragon X Elite version, or both.

The rest of the hardware includes a 13-inch touchscreen with an optional OLED panel, two USB 4 Type-C ports, one USB Type-A connector, and support for up to three external 4K displays. There’s also support for Wi-Fi 7, and just like with the previous Surface Pro 9, there will be an integrated 5G option. However, the 5G models won’t be available until “later in 2024,” according to the product page.

The front and rear-facing cameras have also been overhauled. Microsoft said in a blog post, “The ultra-wide, quad-HD front-facing camera is our best Surface camera ever. AI-powered Windows Studio Effects like Automatic Framing, keep you in focus, even as you move around your space. The 10MP Ultra HD rear-facing autofocus camera supports 4K video so you can capture and edit all on one device.”

The main catch here is the detachable keyboard. It’s a technical upgrade from previous Surface keyboards, with an optional wireless mode and a built-in slot for the pen, but it’s also significantly more expensive. The keyboard costs $450 with the pen and $350 without the pen. Apple’s Magic Keyboard is $300 for the 11-inch iPads and $350 for 13-inch iPads, which is also too much money, but at least that keyboard doubles as a raised stand and adds another USB Type-C port.

The new Surface Pro starts at $1,000 for the Snapdragon X Plus model with an LCD screen, and the Snapdragon X Elite version with an OLED screen starts at $1,500. That doesn’t include the keyboard or stylus pen. You can buy the Surface Pro from Microsoft’s online store, and it should show up at other retailers soon.

Source: Microsoft Devices Blog

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By John P.

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