Gadgets

Microsoft’s Surface 3, a $499 tablet to replace a laptop

Microsoft officially announced a new Surface tablet this morning, calling it the ‘Surface 3’. Just like like the more expensive ‘Surface Pro 3,’ the new tablet hopes to replace your laptop with a thin and light tablet model that’s a little more convenient.

The new Surface 3 will run full Windows, the old Windows RT version is officially dead-in-the-water, and Surface 3 will run full Office as well. Microsoft has also confirmed a 4G LTE-ready version, but more information on carriers and details will be released at a later date. The new Surface 3 will start at just $499, well under the ‘Surface Pro 3’ price-tag.

“Surface 3 brings what customers love about Surface Pro 3 to more people, delivering the premium design and productivity of Surface in a more affordable device,” said Panos Panay, corporate vice president, Microsoft Surface. “We’ve taken everything we learned making Surface Pro 3 and poured that innovation into this newest Surface. It’s beautiful, versatile, powerful and productive, and our customers are going to love what it lets them do.”

The Surface 3 will come equipped with a new quad-core Intel Atom x7 processor, featuring up to 10 hours of video-playback battery life according to Microsoft. The new model will also feature a 10.8-inch ClearType HD multi-touch display, featuring 3:2 aspect ratio and stereo speakers with Dolby Audio-enhanced sound.

The Surface 3 will also come with the popular three-position kickstand. Both the Surface 3 and Surface 3 (4G LTE) will ship with full Windows 8.1 and can be upgraded to Windows 10 for free when the new OS becomes available in the summer. They also come complete with a one-year subscription of Microsoft Office 365 Personal, including Outlook, Word, Excel, PowerPoint and OneNote, plus OneDrive cloud storage.

“Having explored multiple platforms, we are confident that Surface 3 meets the expectations of our experienced and professional flight crew,” said Captain Alan Stealey, divisional senior vice president, Flight Operations, Emirates. “The device’s innovative design and functionality prove to be the choice for our EFB (Electronic Flight Bag) initiative.”

Surface 3 and new accessories will be available for pre-order starting March 31 through microsoftstore.com, Microsoft stores and select partner retailers in the following markets: Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Ireland, Italy, Korea, Luxembourg, Malaysia, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Portugal, Singapore, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, Thailand, the United Kingdom and the United States.

Starting May 5 through those same retailers and resellers, customers can begin purchasing Surface 3, Surface 3 Type Cover, Surface Pen, Surface 3 Docking Station and Surface 3 Screen Protector, with availability in all 26 markets by May 7. Microsoft will offer Surface 3 (4G LTE) through T-Mobile and Verizon Wireless in the U.S. later this year. More to come regarding additional Surface 3 (4G LTE) availability and markets in the coming months.

Tags : Microsoft