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Microsoft unveils the Surface 2

The successor to the Surface RT runs on a Tegra 4 and has a Full HD display

To say that Microsoft was unsuccessful with its first attempt at a tablet (Surface RT) would be an understatement. And while most manufacturers are turning their backs on the Windows RT OS entirely, MS seems determined to prove itself with a new RT tablet – the Surface 2.

The Surface 2 features a 10.6-inch Full HD display, a Tegra 4 processor, 32 or 64 GB of internal storage, a USB 3.0 port, a 5 MP back-facing camera, a 3.5 MP front-facing camera with improved low-light performance, and pre-loaded Microsoft Office 2013 RT.

The new device is a huge upgrade over the Surface RT and basically outdoes it in nearly every way. It's thinner (0.35 inches), lighter (1.49 pounds), offers better battery life (10 hours of video playback), has an improved camera, the bundled version of MS Office includes Outlook RT, and it offers up to 4x faster performance. The kickstand has also been improved and can be set in two different positions. As an added incentive, Microsoft is offering 1 year of free Skype voice calling, and 2 years of free 200 GB SkyDrive storage with each purchase. Despite the upgrades, anyone considering the tablet as a laptop replacement may still be disappointed to hear that the keyboard-covers are still sold separately and haven't gotten any cheaper.

The Surface 2 will be available for pre-order on September 24th and in stores on October 22nd. Prices start at US$449.


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Craig Munro, 2013-09-23 (Update: 2021-05-18)