There has been plenty of rumors surrounding the upcoming Surface Pro tablet from Microsoft for quite some time already, but the day of reckoning has finally arrived with Microsoft making an announcement of the latest generation Surface Pro tablet. There will no longer be a numbering system attached to the Surface Pro naming convention, which means we will make a return to inserting the model year behind as a point of reference. One thing is for sure though, the Surface Pro 2017 has certainly come a long way from its ancestor, the original Surface Pro which was released in 2013. The design, being its fifth incarnation, is certainly future forward and there is plenty to love about the new Surface Pro 2017. While it continues to maintain the family lineage by offering a 3:2 ratio display, the Surface Pro 2017 has been a long time in coming, taking into consideration how the previous generation Surface Pro 4 was released to the masses in October 2015, making it close to two years overdue now.
Do take note that some of the Surface Pro 4’s specifications have been maintained as Microsoft saw fit, including the 12.3-inch PixelSense display on the Surface Pro 2017. However, do not be dismayed, as Microsoft has assured consumers that there are now more than 800 new custom parts underneath the hood, and the Washington, Redmond company have successfully used up 99% of the interior of the tablet that certainly screams of efficiency. Underneath the hood lies a new cooling system, a brand new battery as well as the ability to have everything work in tandem so that it can achieve a superior level of performance.
The Surface Pro 2017 will have Intel’s 7th generation Core processors, otherwise known as Kaby Lake, to run proceedings. Offering additional power saving capability, consumers can take their pick of a Core m3 model, a Core i5, and a Core i7 with Iris graphics. You will also be able to enjoy 4GB of RAM with the base model, and have up to 16GB of RAM with the Core i7 model. In terms of storage, it starts from 128GB and goes all the way up to 1TB of PCIe SSD. This is a very welcome bit of hardware update, taking into consideration how much larger media has become these days. Microsoft also trumpets a 13.5 hour battery life on a single charge for the Surface Pro 2017, but do take note that such a test result involved video playback that has been offloaded to fixed function hardware, consuming the minimum amount of energy to deliver.
The 12.3-inch PixelSense panel at 2736x1825 resolution offers approximately 267 pixels per inch, and there is also a toggle for users to choose between enhanced color and sRGB. Expect your ears to be tickled by the presence of new speakers that carry the Dolby Audio Premium name, making sure that it blends it seamlessly to the rest of the chassis to deliver an aesthetically pleasing performance. The i5 models are also now fanless, which will make it run quieter than before. However, the i7 model will feature a fan, but we suspect that engineering marvels will make subsequent i7-powered Surface Pro models fanless as well.
The Surface Pro 2017’s hinge has also seen an evolution, with the kickstand being able to tilt all the way back to 165°, while including Surface Dial support. There is also a new pen thrown into the mix, offering 4096 levels of pressure sensitivity, and lower level of latency than before, with support for tilt, although it is not included with the Surface Pro 2017. You will need to pick it up separately for $60 apiece. Connectivity options include a full-sized USB 3.0 (Type-A) port, microSD slot, Surface Connect, a headset port, a mini DisplayPort, and a keyboard cover connector. Expect the Surface Pro to be available for pre-order, and it is set to ship this June 15th.