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The compact Surface Laptop Go 2 from Microsoft needs a keyboard illumination

Microsoft Surface Laptop Go 2
Microsoft Surface Laptop Go 2
With the Surface Laptop Go 2, Microsoft continues to offer a compact 12-inch companion that scores with sufficient performance and a high-quality case in everyday operation. Besides the price being too high, the laptop particularly lacks a keyboard illumination.

At this point, high-quality compact laptops with screen sizes below 13 inch have become fairly rare, but Microsoft still continues to offer the Surface Laptop Go, equipping the second generation now with a slightly more powerful Tiger Lake processor from Intel. Although this isn't up to date technologically and the CPU performance would have been better with the newer Alder Lake chips, the combination of the Core i5-1135G7, Iris Xe Graphics G7, PCIe SSD, and 8 GB of RAM is currently completely sufficient for everyday tasks.

Besides its compact size, the high-quality workmanship of the case is also convincing. In addition to plastic, Microsoft uses aluminum. Neither the workmanship, nor the haptic feel have to hide behind the more expensive Surface devices. In addition to the proprietary Surface Connection, the sides also house a USB-C and a regular USB-A connection. Even though they aren't the fastest, the connections are completely sufficient in practice and also don't require any adapters. 

We also like the keyboard with its accurate typing experience, but we quickly notice the lack of a keyboard illumination, which is simply a hindrance in practice. In addition, the 3:2 display isn't particularly efficient despite its low resolution, causing the battery life in our WLAN test to turn out mediocre with 4.5 to 7.5 hours, depending on the brightness. This means that you probably won't get through a whole workday without a recharge. Another problem is the price, and at an MSRP of 869 Euros (~$872), the Surface Laptop Go 2 is simply too expensive in our opinion. However, the price has already been lowered, and currently the top model is available for about 700 Euros (~$702).

We hope that Microsoft will also continue to offer the compact Surface Laptop Go in the future, possibly even with passive cooling. The device levels out quickly at 15 watts anyways, and with passive cooling, you can continuously keep about 10 watts cool, which would still be sufficient for everyday tasks. We would also like a slightly longer battery life and definitely an illuminated keyboard. You can find more information on the Surface Laptop Go 2 including extensive benchmark results and measurements in our detailed review:

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> Expert Reviews and News on Laptops, Smartphones and Tech Innovations > News > News Archive > Newsarchive 2022 08 > The compact Surface Laptop Go 2 from Microsoft needs a keyboard illumination
Andreas Osthoff, 2022-08-24 (Update: 2022-08-22)