Over on the Windows Blog, Microsoft's head of devices, Panos Panay, writes that the Surface Book 2 is a laptop meant to "push the limits of what technology can do". With the company making such a bold claim, you can bet the tech blog-o-sphere will put the laptop to the test versus the MacBook Pro, so the company had better be 200% certain that it will come out on top.
Alongside the new Surface Book 2, Microsoft has also announced a new Surface Mouse today.
Surface Book 2 13.5-inch models will be available to purchase on November 16 though Microsoft Stores, MicrosoftStore.com and select retailers in the United States, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Hong Kong, China, Japan, United Kingdom, France, Germany and Austria.
The 15-inch model of the Surface Book 2.
Of course, it still has the Surface Connect port, which is also USB 3.1 Gen 1, and you can use that or the Type-C port for charging. As before, you can release the upper touchscreen section - complete with processor, storage, and battery - from the keyboard section and use it as a tablet. It's ready for Windows Mixed Reality Ultra too for a full VR experience with a compatible headset and controller.
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However, these options are not available with the base model for 13.5-inch Surface Book 2 though.
It retains the S pen feature from the original Surface Book. This time around a single USB Type-C port is included, alongside two Type-A 3.1 ports. "The upgraded 13" machine offers the same Core i7-8650U CPU as the larger Book 2, and it can house an optional GeForce GTX 1050 graphics chip with 2GB of RAM in tow. The Surface Book 2 is the first of Microsoft's notebooks to offer the connection, and as you'd hope it supports USB 3.1 data, video, and power in/out.
Inside, both models are powered by the 7th generation Intel "Kaby Lake" processors as well as the new 8th generation Intel "Coffee Lake" processors. The MacBook Pro, though, doesn't have touch capabilities or a detachable screen like the Surface Book 2.
Like the original Surface Book, the keyboard base has an articulating Dynamic Fulcrum hinge that thickens the base to 0.9 inches, with the system's body tapering down to 0.57 inches at the other end. Battery life stretches to 17 hours (video playback) in a docked configuration and 5 hours in tablet mode. He paints the Surface Book 2 as a laptop without compromises, for the gamer or creative professional who needs both power and flexibility on the go.
Microsoft has launched two different models with screen sizes of 15-inch and 13.5-inch. With the 15-inch variant, there's no option for integrated graphics, and no Core i5 option, so this one starts at $2,499.
It was only a matter of time before we got a 15-inch version of the Surface Book-it just makes sense for a computer that is packed with high-end specs.