New York hosts the most exciting hardware event of the year. Microsoft not only presents enhancements to its tablets and laptops. The company surprises with two spectacular devices, each with two displays: the Surface Neo and the Surface Duo.
The big star of the Microsoft event is the Surface Neo, which kept the company largely secret until the show in New York. It is a 655-gram lightweight device with two 9-inch displays, each 5.6 millimetres thin and together form a 13.1-inch panel. They are held together by a clever hinge that keeps the screens stable at every angle. On the backs not only a pen can adhere magnetically, but also a keyboard, which works if necessary to the front.
Windows 10 X on board
The operating system is a special variant of Windows 10: Windows 10 X, adapted for devices with dual displays. Among other things, it can be used to run two different apps on the display, which can correspond with one another, for example, exchange content. But it is also possible to distribute an application to the two panels. If you open an e-mail on one screen, the browser automatically opens on the other.
You can hold the Surface Neo vertically or horizontally. If you flip the keyboard up, the display on which it is placed automatically reduces. If you need the complete screen, you can also unplug the keyboard and place it in front of the Surface Neo. It is also possible to display a virtual keyboard on a display. The double-surface is powered by a specially developed Intel processor.
Surface Neo is an Android smartphone
An even bigger surprise succeeds Microsoft with the smaller Surface Duo, which has two 5.9-inch large, 4.8-millimetre thin displays and at the same time is a smartphone. The operating system is Google’s Android, its ARM processor comes from Qualcomm. Also, the duo is to come on the market in the coming autumn.
While Duo and Neo will be released in a year’s time, other interesting devices that Microsoft has introduced can already be pre-ordered. They are equipped with Windows 10 Home for private customers, and they are available to business customers with Windows 10 Pro.
Upgrades for Pro and Laptop
The Surface Pro is not only more powerful in the seventh generation, but finally has a USB-A port as well as a modern USB-C port. In addition, the device has a fast-charge function and the battery is said to last a full day, according to Microsoft. The cheapest version of the 12.3-inch tablet costs 900 euros.
The third generation of Surface Laptop now comes in a 15-inch version and with an aluminium housing. The 15-inch devices sold Microsoft residential customers for the first time with high-performance AMD processors. The 13.5-inch variants for business customers are still equipped with Pentium chips but are significantly stronger than its predecessors.
The devices have replaceable SSD hard drives, a USB-C and a USB-A port and redesigned dual far-field microphones. In addition, the trackpad is 20 per cent larger than its predecessor. The Surface Laptop 3 costs with a 13.5-inch display from 1150 euros, the 15-inch model offers Microsoft from 1350 euros.
iPad Pro competitor
Particularly interesting is the Surface Pro X since it is driven by an ARM processor, which Microsoft developed with Qualcomm. The device should run very efficiently, but powerful enough for a full-fledged Windows 10 and demanding work. That would make it a serious competitor to the iPad Pro.
The high-resolution display (267 PPI) of the only 7.3 mm thin tablet is 13 inches tall, it has two USB-C ports and can be charged quickly. The device can always be online via LTE. Cool: The new Slim Pen finds a place in a compartment under the display in the matching keyboard cover, where it is also loaded.
The prices for the Surface Pro X start at 1150 euros. What the associated keyboard and the control pen Slim Pen cost, Microsoft has left open.
Translator pegs do not come for the time being
Unfortunately, Microsoft’s first wireless earphones – the Surface Earbuds – are not coming to Germany for the time being. The earphones with a strikingly large touch panel on the outside should not only sit comfortably and sound particularly good. They can also be used for simultaneous translations through the Microsoft cloud. In the US they are offered for 250 euros.