Surface Pro 2 and Surface 2: price, specs and release date

Microsoft has unveiled updated versions of its tablets, the Surface Pro 2 and Surface 2.

At an event in New York, Microsoft showed off its Surface devices as well as new accessories, with many of the details matching earlier leaks. Both devices will be available in the UK on 22 October, with pre-orders starting tomorrow.

The Surface Pro 2 will run Windows 8.1 on an Intel Haswell chip, boosting the tablet’s performance by 20%, said Panos Panay, vice president of Surface development.

Microsoft also addressed one of the major complaints about the first generation: battery life. The Surface Pro 2 offers 75% greater battery life than its predecessor. Microsoft has also created a cover with an additional battery, which when combined with the tablet delivers as much as two and a half times more life than the first generation, Panay said – more than ten hours.

Panay said the Surface Pro 2 wasn’t “reinventing the wheel” but an incremental update, noting improvements to the display’s colour accuracy, better speakers and a new kickstand, that sits at a better angle to use the tablet on your lap.

Surface Pro 2 Kickstand

Panay also showed off using the Surface Pro 2 to process 6K raw video, saying it highlights the ability to have “the full power of a PC in a tablet form”.

Alongside the Surface Power Cover – the detachable keyboard with the extra battery – Microsoft revealed a docking station that features three USB 2 ports, one USB 3 port, mini DisplayPort, Ethernet, power charging and support for a monitor with up to 3,840 by 2,160 resolution.

Surface Pro 2 dock

The Type Cover has also been updated. The new version is 1mm thinner than the last version, backlit, has less travel in the keys for easier typing, and comes in purple, pink, blue and black.

The Surface Pro 2 will be available in 64GB and 128GB versions with 4GB of RAM, starting from £719, as well as 256GB and 512GB versions with 8GB of RAM.

Surface 2

Microsoft also revealed the Surface 2, the follow-up from the Windows-on-ARM Surface RT.

Panay promised it would let people actually be productive, rather than merely consume content.

As with its sibling Surface Pro 2, the Surface 2 looks similar to its predecessor, but Microsoft said it’s thinner and lighter, and features a 1080p ClearType display. It also now comes in silver, and has the Surface logo clearly displayed on the back.

Surface 2

The Surface 2 runs an Nvidia Tegra 4 processor, a 10.6in 1080p display, a USB 3 port, 3.5-megapixel front camera and 5-megapixel rear camera, and promises ten hours of battery life,

Microsoft said the Surface launched with 10,000 apps, and Panay said the Windows Store now has 100,000. He said apps for Flipboard and Facebook were on the way, but didn’t reveal release dates.

The Surface 2 is available in 32GB and 64GB versions, starting from £359.

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