Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Microsoft announces the Surface 3

Microsoft announced the Surface 3 today through a blog post from Panos Panay.  The 10.8" Surface 3 will be replacing the now dead Surface 2 which ran a very limited version of Windows 8 called RT.  This Surface 3 is what many consumers envisioned for the RT models.

The Surface 3 is a consumer model meant for mass market appeal and will probably piss off a few OEMs since this will directly eat into their sales.  I can see this tablet/computer being the perfect device to send your kid off to college with.  I'll go over a few details below.


The Surface 3 starts $499 for a 64GB hard drive and 2GB of RAM.  That price jumps to $599 if you want a 128GB hard drive and 4GB of RAM.  These prices are low for what you're getting and you're getting a really thin, well constructed, full computer with 9 hours of battery life.  What you're not told is that the keyboard costs $129 and the pen that's marketed with the Surface 3 also costs $50.  So if you want to get the Surface 3 like advertised, you're going to pay $680 for the cheapest model.  The pen from the Surface Pro 3 will work if you have one of those.  The bad thing about this is if you own any of the previous versions of the Surface or Surface Pro, none of those keyboard will fit perfectly with the Surface 3.   They will function, but the Surface Pro 3 keyboard will be too big and even the previous touch and type keyboards will overlap the screen when closed by about 1cm.

Design and Specs:

Screen:  10.8" 1920x1280 full HD 3:2 aspect ratio screen which is less than the Surface Pro models, but should be more than adequate.
Processor:  Quad core  Intel Atom x7-Z8700 processor running at an undisclosed speed.
Battery:   9 to 10 hours of battery life which Apple would call "all day" battery life.
Weight:   1.37lbs which pretty light for a computer.
Ports:  Charge via micro USB which is the same cable you probably use to charge your phone and a USB 3 port as well as a mini display port to share your screen.
Kickstand:  3 position kickstand.  Version 1 Surfaces only had 1 position, Version 2 had two positions, Surface Pro 3 has unlimited positions.

You can check out the full specs and purchase it on at the Surface Store.


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