Surface Laptop Studio: Showcase PC for Windows 11
In two weeks, on October 5th, Windows 11 will be launched.
But before the first major update for the PC operating system in years comes on the market, Microsoft presented new laptops, tablets and a few accessories, all optimized for the new Windows.
As usual in Corona times, the innovations were presented by webcast on Wednesday evening.
The smallest gadget to which the company devoted time was the Microsoft Ocean Plastic Mouse, a computer mouse made from "ocean plastic".
On the way to more sustainability, "every step is important", commented Microsoft on the choice of materials.
In fact, the mouse, which costs 28 euros, is made of a resin that is made “20 percent from recycled plastic obtained from the sea”.
The US group developed the material together with the Saudi Arabian chemical and metal group SABIC.
Such material is not mentioned in the novelty, which is likely to attract the most interest. With the Surface Laptop Studio, Microsoft wants to bring a device onto the market that combines three functions. The core is neither new computer chips nor software, but an elaborately designed hinge with which the 14.4-inch touchscreen can be brought into different positions.
On the one hand, there is a laptop mode in which the device works like a normal notebook, with a keyboard and touchpad. In the so-called stage mode, the screen is angled and the keyboard is covered. The Surface Laptop Studio should be suitable for games, video streaming and presentations. Finally, in studio mode, the display is laid across the entire front, completely covering the keyboard and touchpad, and the laptop becomes a tablet.
Microsoft presented the Surface Slim Pen 2 digital pen to go with this new multi-laptop tablet. Thanks to a new, sharper pen tip, it should enable “more precise writing, shading and coloring” and work more sensitively.
In addition, it is equipped with a "haptic motor" which, in conjunction with Windows 11, should create the feeling of "pen and paper" when writing and drawing.
On some of the new devices, including the Surface Laptop Studio, it can be magnetically attached to the keyboard and charged wirelessly there.
Upgrades for tablets
In addition to these innovations, Microsoft's managers showed upgrades to existing product lines, such as the Surface Pro 8. The company describes this new version of its Pro tablet as "the largest update of the Surface Pro series since the popular Surface Pro 3".
New Intel processors serve as the drive, two Thunderbolt 4 sockets are available for external devices, and the battery life should be up to 16 hours.
Equipped with new cameras, it should improve the quality of video chats.
Microsoft specifies the price as "from 1179 euros", a matching keyboard costs 180 euros.
With prices starting at 439 euros, the Surface Go 3, which is designed for beginners, is significantly cheaper, but also less powerful with Intel Pentium Gold and Core i3 processors.
Microsoft specifies the endurance of the 10.5 inch tablet as eleven hours.
Double image smartphone
In addition to tablets and laptops, a new version of Microsoft's double-screen smartphone, the Surface Duo 2, was also shown.
In its second generation, the device can now also connect to 5G networks and has a new triple camera and a fast mobile processor from Qualcomm.
The memory is optionally equipped with 128, 256 or 512 gigabytes.
Above all, however, the screens have become a touch larger, each measuring 5.8 inches instead of the previous 5.6 inches.
When opened, this results in a display with 8.3 inches diagonally.
However, the innovative smartphone is still not cheap.
For private users, Microsoft calls a price of 1599 euros, corporate customers should pay 1649 euros.
Inclusion with paper and stickers
One particularly interesting innovation is actually just a collection of stickers, labels, and cords that Microsoft calls the Surface Adaptive Kit.
The different parts of this set are intended to make it easier for people with visual impairments to recognize or feel keys, for example.
Cables and the corresponding sockets are to be assigned to one another with color-coded stickers.
A loop to stick on the lid should enable people with physical limitations to open notebooks without assistance or to unfold the base of a Surface tablet.
It remains to be seen whether these simple aids can be used by the people for whom they were developed in the way Microsoft developers envision.