Microsoft’s more “productive” tablet device, the Surface Pro 2, will launch with the full version of Windows 8.1 Pro, featuring compatibility with all Windows desktop software. On the hardware side, Surface Pro 2 is packing Intel’s new Haswell i5 processor and now comes in storage and RAM configurations larger than the original Pro offered, either 4 or 8GB of RAM and 64, 128, 256 or 512GB of storage. The battery life on the Surface Pro 2, Microsoft has said, has been optimized for 60% longer life compared to the Surface Pro, which tested at about 4 hours of use. The price for the Surface Pro 2 will start at $899 (64GB, 4GB RAM), $100 more than its predecessor.
The Surface 2, meanwhile — the sequel to Microsoft’s Surface RT, which is meant to compete with Apple’s iPad — is being given an even more noticeable specs bump and a new silver colored casing. The NVIDIA quad-core processor is now a speedier Tegra 4; the display has been upped to 10.6″ Full HD (1080p); and the company is claiming 10 hours of battery life for the device, about 25% longer than the Surface RT. The Surface 2 will have a starting price of $449 (32GB version).
The original Surface RT will still be available in a 32GB version for $349.
Microsoft also introduced two new physical keyboards for the Surface, the Type Cover 2 and Touch Cover 2, which are now both thinner and have back-lit keys. The dual-angle kickstand on the new Surface tablets has also been redesigned, making the tablet great for desktop or laptop use, according to Microsoft.
These new Surface tablets will be available on October 22nd, with pre-orders beginning this Wednesday.