Microsoft just announced a bunch of new Surface devices, including the Surface Laptop 3 which includes an AMD processor option. A thinner and lighter Surface Pro 7. A brand-new Surface Pro X that uses a semi-custom Qualcomm processor. And the company unveiled new Surface accessories, such as the new Surface Earbuds.
In addition, and perhaps the biggest surprise was the revealing of Surface Neo, a mini version of the Surface tablet that features a dual-screen and runs the Windows 10X OS. And Surface Duo, a smaller version of Neo that runs a custom version of Android and works just like a phone.
Surface Laptop 3
The Surface Laptop 3 is more than an update for the Surface Laptop 2, in this third generation, you have the choice of a 13.5-inch or a new 15-inch model with new colors as well as up to 11.5 hours of battery life (according to the company).
The Surface Laptop 3 13.5-inch comes with an Intel 10th Generation processor, and it’s now available with an Alcantara fabric finish or machined aluminum metal finish. (Colors available include Sandstone and Cobalt.)
Then there’s the Surface Laptop 3 15-inch model that features a larger screen using a special edition of an AMD Ryzen processor with integrated graphics. (Colors available include black and silver.)
Both devices offered a new keyboard that should make typing more comfortable with a full 1.33mm key travel, and now with a 20 percent larger glass trackpad.
This time around both devices includes a USB Type-A and USB Type-C, and faster charging to up to 80 percent in an hour.
Also, these devices now have removable hard drives. However, it’s something that Microsoft is touting as a privacy feature for organizations to make sure that data can be destroyed properly. But you should still be able to replace the drive for a bigger capacity or replace a broken drive.
Pricing starts at $999 for the 13.5-inch model and $1199 for the 15-inch model. You can preorder these devices now, and they’ll be available on October 22.
Surface Pro 7
The Surface Pro 7 is just an updated version of the Surface Pro 6. The seventh generation of the tablet now includes a 10th Generation Intel processor with Iris Plus graphics. Microsoft is also bringing higher quality “Studio Mics,” and it offers up to 10.5 hours of battery life with faster charging.
Of course, the new Surface Pro 7 has a USB Type-C port, but without thunderbolt support. Type Covers are available in blue and red.
The Surface Pro 7 starts at $749 for the base model. It’s available for preorder now, and it’ll be available on October 22.
Surface Pro X
Alongside the Surface Pro 7, Microsoft also introduced the Surface Pro X, which is a new fanless tablet featuring a semi-custom Qualcomm ARM processor that carries the SQ1 name, and not one, but two USB Type-C ports, as well as LTE connectivity.
The device is 5.33mm thin, features super slim bezels, and has a 13-inch display on a 12-inch chassis.
This new device also has a new Type Cover that now includes a compartment near the top edge to magnetically store the new “Slim Pen,” which now comes with a rechargeable battery that charges automatically using induction charging technology.
Just like the Surface Laptop 3, the Surface Pro X includes a removable Solid-State Drive (SSD), which you can replace for security reasons or upgrade purposes with a Surface certified hard drive. Although you can’t actually open Surface Pro X, in the back, behind the kickstand, there’s a compartment that you can open easily with a paper click that let you access the hard drive as well as the SIM card.
As you take the pen out of its housing, Windows 10 will present you with the option to open the Whiteboard app to start typing using handwriting.
As for the battery life, Microsoft claims up to 13 hours of regular use.
The Surface Pro X will cost $999. It’s available for preorder now, and it’ll go on sale on November 5.
Microsoft first introduces the Surface Headphones, and now we have the Earbuds.
The Surface Earbuds are small and stylish headphones with touch and voice controls for music, calls and much more.
The buds feature immersive Omnisonic sound and instantly play Spotify from your Android phone with a triple tap on either earbud.
If you’re an Office 365 subscriber, the Earbuds can integrate with Outlook using your phone. You can add live captions to your PowerPoint presentation, and even live translation in up to 60 languages.
The Surface Earbuds cost $249, and they’ll be available sometime in 2019.
During the hardware event in New York City, Microsoft also unveiled the Windows 10X OS (previously known as Windows Lite, also as Santorini), which is not the successor of the Windows 10 that you already know. Instead, it’s a modular version of Windows 10 designed specifically for dual-screen devices.
Although Windows 10X has a familiar interface, it only includes the components necessary to work on a mobile device, and it’ll only support apps from the Microsoft Store.
Windows 10X will be available on future devices, and you’ll see it sometime in fall 2020.
Also known as Project Centaurus, Surface Neo is a new Surface that uses a dual-screen solution to introduce a new category of devices. However, unlike foldable phones, Microsoft is opting to use two displays instead of a foldable OLED display.
Surface Neo runs on Windows 10X (the X stands for eXpression because it’s a new expression of Windows 10), and features two 9-inch LCD displays connect with a hinge that allows 360-degree folding to adapt to whatever position you want, similar to a paper notebook.
When it’s fully open, you can enjoy a 13-inch canvas to multitask almost like using a laptop or tablet.
There’s also a physical keyboard that goes with Surface Neo, and it smartly integrates with Windows 10X. For instance, when placing the keyboard at the bottom of the screen (laptop mode), the top part of the screen will unveil input actions, such as emojis and other shortcuts.
If you place the board at the top of the screen, the bottom of the screen will transform into a palm and trackpad area automatically.
Microsoft says that this device will be ready for holiday 2020, and there are no more details about pricing or specific specs. (Though, it’ll use Intel chips as it’s required to run Windows 10X.)
Microsoft is coming back to the phone business, but with a new device that makes phone calls, and it’s not necessarily a phone.
The biggest surprise at the hardware event was the unveiling of Surface Duo, a dual-screen device much similar to Surface Neo, but a lot smaller, just about the size of a regular phone.
Surprisingly, this time around Microsoft is partnering with Google, because Surface Duo runs on a custom version of Android, instead of Windows 10X.
According to the company, it’s a productivity device that runs all your Android apps on a Surface hardware design that also allows you to make and receive phone calls, text messages, and more.
It features a 5.6-inch screen and when fully unfold you can use a canvas of 8.3-inches.
The device is expected to ship in the holiday of 2020, and Microsoft is introducing it now because it needs developers to start working on apps and experiences for this new form factor.