NEW YORK — At an event today, Microsoft announced refreshed versions of several of its Surface devices, including the Surface Pro 6 and Surface Laptop 2. The two mobile devices are simply refreshes, though each comes in a new black color. Microsoft also packed the event with details about Windows 10.
Each of the updates are largely spec bumps to Intel’s latest 8th generation processors. In a surprising twist, neither the Surface Pro 6 nor Surface Studio 2 seem to utilize USB Type-C, which is already on the Surface Book 2 and Surface Go. Many fans hoped for this update (or an even bigger jump to Thunderbolt 3), but there was no reference to that on stage.
The Surface Pro 6 was up first, with new 8th generation Intel core processors, with up to 16GB of memory and 1TB of SSD storage. Surface head Panos Panay said that Microsoft redesigned the thermals to handle the new quad-core processor. It also comes in a black color, which we haven’t seen for years on Surface. Panay claimed it’s 67 percent faster than the previous Surface Pro and that it would offer 13.5 hours of battery life.
The Surface Laptop 2 is also getting 8th generation Intel Core processors and a new black color (yep, in Alcantara!). Microsoft says this has quieter typing than the previous device. Panay also claimed the keyboard is best-in-class. It also includes Instant On functionality and a PixelSense display with 3.4 million pixels. Panay suggested it’s 85 percent faster than the original Surface Laptop and said it offers 14.5 hours of video playback.
Microsoft’s all-in-one PC, the Surface Studio, is getting its first refresh since 2016 as well. The Surface Studio 2 has up to 50 percent more graphics performance, though Microsoft didn’t specify the GPU on stage except for saying that it’s based on Nvidia’s Pascal architecture. You can also get a 2TB SSD. The display measures 28 inches, and the computer has Xbox Wireless built in. The Surface Pen and Dial are back, as well. The screen has 13.5 million pixels, 192DPI and a 3:2 aspect ratio. The Surface Studio 2 uses a new LCD technology, which the company said it took from the portable line for a better screen. Panay called it the “most powerful Surface ever.”
Microsoft also unveiled its Surface All Access program, which lets users pay for any Surface they want in monthly installments, with prices starting at $24.99 for 24 months.
Additionally, Microsoft head Shilpa Ranganathan, general manager of mobile product experience, took the stage to discuss mobile. She showed off new features for Android, including translation features built into SwiftKey and workflows using Microsoft Launcher. The Timeline is now available on Windows for Android as well. She also demonstrated Your Phone, which lets you send and receives texts on your Windows 10 PC. Perhaps most impressive is “app mirroring,” which be will a feature in a future Windows 10 update that lets you see Android mobile apps on Windows 10.