Microsoft unveiled two new tablets yesterday at an exclusive event held in New York City: the Surface Pro 2 and Surface 2. The Surface Pro 2 is being directed as more of Microsoft’s ultimate tablet as it has some serious specs which improves the overall performance of the system by 20% as well as its graphical performance by 50%, while at the same time improving its battery life by 75%, which was a big concern for previous owners of the Surface Pro. But the Surface 2 has also been greatly improved over the Surface RT, and lucky for you, we also got our hands all over Microsoft’s newest tablet.
Just as with the Surface Pro 2, the Surface 2 has received a major improvement in the display department as it features a Full 1080p ClearType display that offers less reflectivity, making it easier to use outdoors. The Surface 2 also receives the two-shot kickstand, which makes it possible to use the tablet either while sitting at a table or on your lap. Overall, Microsoft was able to make the Surface 2 much thinner than the Surface RT as well as keeping the product to be created from only two pieces of magnesium. The Surface 2 also benefits from a boost in its battery as it has 25% more battery life, with Microsoft claiming the product “lasts all day.”
Microsoft improved the internal specs of the Surface 2 as well as they say the tablet is three to four times faster than “what you’ve seen in the past.” USB 3.0 will also be making its debut on the Surface 2 along with an improved front-facing camera that features a ⅓ inch sensor, which helps improve how well it performs under low-light conditions.
It seems Microsoft isn’t giving up on its Windows RT 8 as the Surface 2 will come with Windows RT 8.1 when it releases later in October. Considering just how many companies have decided against offering a product that uses Windows RT 8 as the operating system of choice, it’s interesting to see Microsoft continue to offer it in the Surface 2.
The Surface 2 felt much lighter than the Surface Pro 2 as it resembled a weight that many of us who are familiar with tablets, such as the iPad or Galaxy Tab, many would be comfortable with. Even though the Surface 2 was running on Windows RT 8.1, we didn’t notice any lag or hiccups when using the tablet. In fact, we were able to launch several Microsoft Office applications at the same time, and noticed all of them worked flawlessly during our short time with the tablet. The magnesium gave the Surface 2 a really nice feel in the hands and offered a real premium look and the two-shot kickstand made it much easier to find just the right angle to use the tablet.
The Microsoft Surface 2 will be available starting on October 22 and will retail starting at $449. The Surface 2 will be available in two options: a 32GB and 64GB version, with both versions launching with a copy of Windows RT 8.1 pre-installed as well as Office 2013 RT. Microsoft will also be offering 200GB of SkyDrive for two years starting from the moment you purchase your Surface 2, so keep that in mind if you’re a fan of hosting your files on the cloud rather than on your tablet.