Microsoft is going for the low-end of the personal computing market with a smaller, cheaper Surface Go tablet that takes on Apple's cheapest iPads.
The Surface Go has a 10-inch screen, about the same size as the entry-level iPad. At $399, the device is $400 cheaper than the current Surface Pro tablet, but has slower Intel processors and about four hours less battery time, Microsoft said. The new tablet weighs 1.15 pounds and is 8.3 mm thin, far lighter than existing Surface products. It goes on sale Aug. 2 with Wi-Fi connectivity. Cellular versions are coming later.
Ofcourse, other multiple configurations, including 64, 128, and 256 gigabyte storage options and 4 or 8 gigabytes of RAM, are bringing the price to more than $549.
Surface Go offers a custom-built high-resolution PixelSense Display that supports Surface Pen with 4096 levels of pressure sensitivity, low pen parallax, low latency, and precision for accurate note taking, drawing and computer-aided design.
In portrait mode, the screen was designed to render the page to the scale of most school textbooks, and in landscape mode, it can render pages side by side as if you were holding a paperback book in hand.
The device is powered by the 7th Generation Intel Pentium Gold Processor 4415Y, in a fanless design, offering up to nine hours of battery.
The new Surface Go Signature Type Cover is custom-made for Surface Go integrating design features for easier typing, with ergonomic key pitch and great key travel. It also has high precision tuning and Windows Precision Trackpad that supports five-point multi-finger gestures, and you can connect the new Surface Mobile Mouse to work the way that you want.
A built-in kickstand with full friction hinge that extends to 165 degrees helps you stay in your flow from tablet to studio mode, and a Windows Hello camera allows for familiar and secure sign-in using face recognition.
Surface Go also has the ports you need, including Surface Connect for charging and docking; USB-C 3.1 for data, video, and charging; a headphone jack; and a MicroSD card reader for storage expansion.
Surface Go with Wi-Fi will be available for pre-order beginning on July 10 in the following markets, US, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, UK, Ireland, France, Germany, Austria, Belgium, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Switzerland, Denmark, Finland, Norway, Sweden, Poland, Italy, Portugal, and Spain. Products will begin to hit shelves on August 2. An LTE model will be arriving later this year.
In the coming weeks, Surface Go will also be available for pre-order in Japan, Singapore, Korea, Taiwan, Malaysia, Thailand, Hong Kong, and in China with more markets to follow.
Microsoft release a $499 Surface 3 tablet in 2015, but discontinued the product in 2016. The software giant kicked off its consumer hardware push in 2012 with the launch of the Surface RT. These tablets didn't resonate with consumers, so the company focused more on pricier Pro models.
So far, Microsoft has struggled to make a hit Surface product. The business generated $4.4 billion in revenue in the past four quarters. Apple sold $20 billion worth of iPads in the same period.