Microsoft are readying the next step in their aggressive release schedule, following last year’s successful output with the new Surface Go 2, Surface Book 3, Surface Headphones 2, and Surface Earbuds. The attractive line up makes good on the high levels of anticipation surrounding the Surface family, timed perfectly while the world gets used to the idea of working from home.
Across their tablets, Microsoft seems to have sharpened their focus on improved battery life and high-grade graphic processors, peaking with the Surface Book 3 (from AU$2,694; May 21st release) being described by the company as “our most powerful laptop ever.”
Given how well received the Surface Book 2 was, this should be another show of strength from Microsoft, who’ve built this product line to balance the power of a desktop with the flexibility of a tablet and the portability of a slim laptop. The new device will provide up to 50% more performance than its predecessor and a battery life of up to 17.5 hours. Sizes will be sold in either 13-inch or 15-inch, with both heavily spec’d by PixelSense Display, 1080p 60fps, a precise trackpad, and 10th Generation Intel Core processors. Graphics will come via the choice between a NVIDIA GeForce GTX GPU in a nod to gamers, or a Quadro RTX 3000 for “commercial customers and higher education institutions.”
With the Surface Go 2 (From AU$629; May 12th release), Microsoft has clearly doubled-down on their need for a light and portable design without compromising on display. Here, you get a 10.5-inch PixelSense, improved battery life and up to 64% more performance speed than the original with 8th Gen Intel Core M options. They’ve added Studio Mics for a better audio experience and digital communication, and a 5MP front-facing camera that promises better low light performance. The rear-facing camera also gets a retouch with a new app designed for easily scanning documents and whiteboards.
The Surface Go will be available in just a few days, accompanied by the Surface Pan for actions such as drawing diagrams, marking up documents and taking notes. A variety of type covers, sleeves and other accessories will also be made available, in colours like Platinum, Black, Poppy Red, and Ice Blue.
Dipping into the audio side of things, the follow up to the Surface Headphones (AU$399.95; May 12th release) have been re-designed with new rotatable ear cups to slip comfortably over the ears and rest well on the neck. They include 13 levels of ambient noise control, where sound quality has reportedly been improved, as well as a battery life of up to 20 hours. Active noise cancellation will be adjustable via on-ear dials.
Similarly, the long-awaited Surface Earbuds (AU$319.95; May 12th release) feature an “ultra-comfortable and stable fit” with intuitive touch controls and immersive Omnisonic sound. The ability the instantly play Spotify from any Android phone with a triple tap on either earbud should be a nice, convenient gesture, while the screen-free integration with Microsoft 365 should be a huge benefit to those in the ecosystem. The integration will allow anyone to interact with their Outlook Mobile App (for iOs) and dictate in Word, Outlook or Powerpoint. An all-day battery life is promised, boosted by a wireless charging case.
Microsoft will also be releasing the Surface Dock 2 (AU$419.95) which is reportedly due for shipping in select markets late-May. As with its predecessor, this will help users expand their workspace with a magnetic click, delivering fast-charging, higher data transfer rates and enterprise management tools with and ethernet jack, a headphone port, two USB Type-A ports, and a Kensington lock. A new multi-port Microsoft USB-C Travel Hub will help offer more connectivity options and portability.
For more information head to Microsoft’s official blog here.