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Microsoft: Doubling up.

Microsoft expands Surface range and previews first dual-screen Surface devices

Announced at the launch of its new Surface computers (see below) and due to be launched this time next year, Microsoft’s first dual-screen Surface devices are designed to replace the handful of electronic devices – notebooks, tablets, smartphones – that mobile workers typically carry to perform the tasks for which each is best suited.

Microsoft believes that having a single device with two screens will aid productivity by removing the need for workers to switch between apps or devices. As the launch press release states: ‘Imagine being able to take a Microsoft Teams call on one screen and look something up on the web or view a document on another.’

Surface Neo features two 9-inch screens connected by a 360-degree hinge that, when fully opened, creates a full-size 13-inch display, while the pocket-sized Surface Duo has two 5.6-inch screens that unfold to 8.3 inches. The latter can also be used to make phone calls.

In the meantime, Microsoft is bringing out a number of new Surface devices, including the Surface Pro X, Microsoft’s first always connected model with removable solid state disks (SSDs).

Many of the improvements introduced by Microsoft are based on feedback from customers and have a strong business bent, notably the ability for organisations to service aspects of the Surface Laptop 3 for and Surface Pro X themselves. Should a device need to be sent off-site for repair, drives containing sensitive data can be removed and kept on the organisation’s premises.

Other enhancements include 10th generation Intel Core processors for two-times faster performance; integrated USB-C connectivity; super-fast charging of 80% in just one hour; and new business-friendly finishes and cover options.

New Surface devices include the:

Surface Laptop 3 clamshell laptop, now available with 13.5inch and (new) 15-inch screen sizes, with easier serviceability, a 20% bigger trackpad and two microphones for clearer audio. The 15-inch version includes an AMD Ryzen Surface Edition graphics processor;

Surface Pro 7, a versatile ‘2-in-1’ laptop/tablet featuring a keyboard and kickstand that can be set at any angle for easy writing on-screen; and

Surface Pro X, a completely new product line for Microsoft, featuring removable SSDs and Wifi and LTE connectivity for ‘always on’ connectivity. The thinnest, lightest and most powerful Surface Pro device to date, the Pro X boasts premium features like a super-slim bezel that enables a 13in edge-toedge display to be accommodated in the same footprint as a 12in screen, and a new Surface pen holder that prevents the pen from being dislodged accidentally. Magnets flip the pen if it is put in the wrong way around and, when it is picked up, sensors activate an on-screen menu of pen-based operations.

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