Microsoft announces Windows 8-powered Microsoft Surface tablet

Microsoft today unveiled its Surface tablet at an event in Los Angeles. It was conceived, designed and engineered entirely by Microsoft employees. Two versions will be offered. The first will be powered by Windows 8 and a third-generation Intel Core processor while the second will use Windows RT and an ARM-based processor.

Surface for Windows RT specifications:

  • Processor: Unspecified ARM-based
  • Operating system: Windows RT
  • Other connectivity: Wi-Fi
  • Display: 10.6-inch 16:9 ClearType HD
  • Input: Capacitive touchscreen
  • Storage: 32GB or 64GB onboard and microSD cards
  • Connectors: USB 2.0, micro-HD video
  • Dimensions / weight: 9.3 millimeters thick / 676 grams
  • Other: Integrated kickstand, VaporMg case, Office ’15’ apps

Microsoft Surface ProSurface for Windows 8 Pro specifications:

  • Processor: Third-generation Intel Core
  • Operating system: Windows 8
  • Other connectivity: Wi-Fi
  • Display: 10.6-inch 16:9 ClearType Full HD
  • Input: Capacitive touchscreen
  • Storage: 64GB or 128GB onboard and microSDXC cards
  • Connectors: USB 3.0, Mini DisplayPort Video
  • Dimensions / weight: 13.5 millimeters thick / 903 grams
  • Other: Integrated kickstand, VaporMg case

The Surface case was designed using an approach called VaporMg (pronounced Vapor-Mag) that allows parts to be molded as thin as .65 millimeters but remain rigid and strong despite being very light.

Microsoft is also offering an optional Touch Cover that also acts as a keyboard using pressure-sensitive technology. To be available in a variety of colours, it comes with a magnetic connector to attach to the tablet and is only 3 millimeters thick. A slightly thicker (5 millimeters) Type Cover adds moving keys to give users a more traditional typing feel.

Surface for Windows RT will launch at the same time as Windows 8. The Windows 8 Pro model will follow about three months later. Both will be sold in Microsoft Store locations in the U.S. and available through select online Microsoft Stores. Pricing was not revealed but Microsoft promised that both devices are “expected to be competitive with a comparable ARM tablet or Intel Ultrabook-class PC.” It also added that OEMs will have both cost and feature parity on Windows 8 and Windows RT.

Read more: Microsoft