Microsoft has a lot hanging on the future of the Surface Pro tablet. After the underwhelming sales performance of the Surface RT, Microsoft’s next hope of making headway in the tablet market is the Surface Pro, and all eyes will be on the Redmond company as it hopes not to achieve mere “modest” sales of the higher-end Surface. Here’s a recap of what we’ll be seeing on the Surface Pro once it is released later this year, presumably within a few weeks from now.
In terms of specifications and features, the Surface Pro is leagues ahead of the Surface RT. It will ship with Windows 8 Professional, which includes a complete suite of applications, including Microsoft Office; Surface RT is powered by Windows RT, a stripped-down version of Windows 8 for ARM-based devices. It will offer a better-resolution 10.6-inch display (1920×1080) with 10-point multi-touch support, a stylus, an Intel Core i5 processor with 4 GB RAM and much more storage space – perfect for business users, the Surface Pro will come in 64 GB and 128 GB variants.
Contrary to what most people may be expecting, the Microsoft Surface Pro’s launch date is still a mystery. Previously it was announced that it would be released in January 2013, but a specific date was not given and there may even be a chance of a February 2013 release; to stay on the safe side, it may be best to expect an early first quarter 2013 release. Pricing, however, is definitely confirmed, and it won’t be anywhere in the cheap range. The 64 GB Surface Pro without Touch Cover costs $899, and the 128 GB version, also without Touch Cover, is priced at $999. With Touch Cover included, the base version may cost a whopping $1,019 – Microsoft has not announced whether the Touch Covers have to be purchased a la carte or whether they will be bundled in with the tablet at a lower price.