Microsoft is holding an event in New York City on Monday, September 23rd, where the company will introduce the next generation of its Surface tablets.

The event comes about a month before Windows 8.1 hits the street, and almost a year after the launch of the company’s first tablets, the Surface RT and Surface Pro.

Microsoft Surface

While Microsoft is saving details until the 23rd, the leak and rumor mill has been in over-drive, and if everything we’ve heard so far holds up, then it looks like we can expect to see a new Windows RT tablet called the Surface 2, and a new Windows 8.1 tablet called the Surface Pro 2.

Windows RT is a light-weight version Windows designed to run on devices with ARM-based processors. That means it tends to run on tablets that are thin and light, offer long battery life, and fanless designs. Unfortunately it also means that you can’t run most desktop-style Windows apps. Aside from Microsoft Office, tablets running Windows RT tend to be stuck with Metro-style apps.

The Surface 2 is expected to have an NVIDIA Tegra 4 quad-core processor, a 1920 x 1080 pixel display, and offer up to 8 hours of battery life. It should be about the same size and shape as the original Surface RT but it will ship with Windows RT 8.1.

The Surface 2 Pro is expected to feature an Intel Core i5 Haswell processor, offer up to 7 hours of battery life, and more RAM than its predecessor.

It’s also possible that Microsoft could introduce a Surface Pro Mini, featuring a smaller display. Windows 8.1 has been designed with better support for devices featuring screens that are less than 10 inches across. New Surface accessories including a Power Cover that charges the tablet and extends your battery life while you type could also be on the way.

via ZDNet

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10 replies on “Microsoft to unveil next-gen Surface tablets coming September 23rd”

  1. And it’ll cost $700+. What’s the definition of insanity? To keep doing the same thing over and over expecting a different result?

    1. $700+ is over $100 less than how it started and 4th gen Core processor means better battery life, along with throwing in more things like MS Office, which originally they only provided with RT for free.

      Along with improvements from the 8.1 OS update… So it’s not exactly the same…

      Besides, it’s providing more than you would get for the same price for a mobile tablet like the iPad, which has no WACOM digitizer, no USB port, no microSD, no real SSD, a processor that barely rivals an old Intel ATOM, no dual antenna WiFi, and no desktop OS functionality!

      So expectations should be countered by the fact you can’t expect too much for low cost and providing more than others means it’ll cost more!

  2. I hope that the Surface Pro 2 is much cheaper, or at least the original gets a price cut. The Surface RT should also start cheaper. Ideally, the 32 GB Surface RT 2 could come in at $399, and have the 64 GB at $449 or $499; and the Surface Pro 2 would start at $699 for 64 GB (and possibly a Touch or Type Cover).
    These wishes might be unrealistic, but they would be priced to sell pretty well, especially if there is a Haswell chip inside. If the 32 GB Surface RT came in at $399, that really would make the other 10″ tablets look chumpy from a specs comparison (until you get to apps).
    The accessories would really differentiate from the competition, and hopefully more Metro apps are coming. It’s not like Microsoft doesn’t have money to push developers to make apps. If the Windows 8 app market grows, Windows 8 and RT could mature into a good platform.

  3. Because losing 900 million dollars wasn’t enough??? Microsoft needs to drop the RT and stick with the full version of Windows on tablets. There really isn’t a good reason to have an ARM version anymore. Microsoft needs to focus on the version that actually may have a future.

    1. They took a $900 million write-off when they marked down the price of the Surface RT… but they’ve probably invested billions in the platform. Writing all of that off as a waste would be a pretty bold move.

      Not that it’s not exactly what HP did with webOS, but for better or worse (and probably both), Microsoft is no HP.

      1. It’s also not like they have much choice as long as ARM dominates the mobile market… They need to be able to provide a ARM compatible solution that isn’t just for smart phones and for now RT is it…

        1. Why do they need an ARM solution? Intel finally came out with a couple of chips (Haswell and the new Atom) that finally give good battery life. Even the Atom has more performance than the current ARM chips. Microsoft can play in the mobile market and still offer all the legacy software. This is one of their strengths they need to play up in order to get a foothold in this market. Metro apps will come in time.

          1. Have you seen how thick the 2 current Atom 8″ Windows tablets are?

            Besides, why would MS want their future tied to only 1 relevant x86 company like Intel when there are half-dozen relevant ARM companies?

          2. It’s not just a matter of performance but power efficiency, unfortunately for AMD they’re still a long way off from being able to compete directly on power efficiency compared to ARM and now Intel mobile SoCs.

            So, using ARM processors affords them a shortcut in R&D but still push their main advantage of GPU performance…

            Mind, things like HSA and hUMA will also work with ARM too as they have been supportive of AMD’s efforts to establish the HSA foundation.

            While it’s also timing as they will adapt ARM just as it goes 64bit and starts scaling up in performance and capabilities.

            AMD experts first generation to roughly equal the performance of their existing Jaguar cores… Though, application beyond the server market may take awhile…

    2. Exactly what I thought also, they should have gone with Baytrail like the Toshiba Encore. I guess they may have been contractually obligated to go with a T4 this time . Hopefully the next iteration will go the direction they need to.

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