“Why doesn’t Microsoft just make their own laptop?”
This was a question that I once asked in an online forum some years ago. Some of the responses ranged from “That would piss off the other laptop makers” to “Maybe you’re right. They should do it!”
Today, it looks like Microsoft finally decided to show off their new “laptop”.
At an event in New York city, Panos Panay, Microsoft’s head of design, unveiled the Microsoft Surface Laptop. Microsoft’s new laptop is a 13.5-inch laptop that works with Microsoft’s new Windows 10 S operating system.
Software: Microsoft Windows 10 S
Wait…What exactly is Windows 10 S?
Windows 10 S is basically Microsoft’s answer to Google’s Chrome OS. It is a simplified Windows for low-end hardware and in particular the education market. All apps will have to be downloaded from the Windows Store.
With Windows 10 S, Microsoft claimed that it would take about 15 seconds for the software to be ready for a student to login and use for the first time, which seems pretty fast.
With this new OS, Microsoft is targeting the education market. Microsoft has plans for other devices to run Windows 10 S. Devices will start at $189 from the summer (when most schools in the US are about to start) and Windows 10 S will also be free for all schools that are currently running Windows 10 Pro PCs, and include free Office 365 education with Microsoft Teams.
If you want, Microsoft will unlock the full version of Windows 10 on your device for a fee of $50. (But be warned: you won’t be able to return to Windows 10 S)
Microsoft Surface Laptop Hardware
This is not Microsoft’s Surface Book which is basically a 2-in-1 device. It’s all connected together and is a true laptop from Microsoft.
The Surface Laptop will ship in four colors: Platinum, Burgundy, Cobalt blue, and Graphite gold.
The screen supports Microsoft’s Surface Pen from previous Surface products. The Surface Laptop uses the latest Intel Core i5 and i7 processors. Microsoft says the battery life will last for 14.5 hours thanks to the new processors. Microsoft also makes the bold claim that the Surface Laptop is faster than the i7 MacBook Pro, and it has more battery life than any MacBook Air. That is something that will definitely be tested once this device is officially released.
Strangely, there are no speaker grills or holes. The speakers have been integrated underneath the keyboard so the sound comes from under your fingers.
Other specs include USB 3.0 port, a headset jack and a Mini DisplayPort.
Pricing for the Surface Laptop starts at $999 for the Core i5 version with 4GB of RAM and 128GB of SSD storage. The Surface Laptop ships on June 15th if you’re interested.
It looks like Microsoft is officially giving Apple a run for their money. Maybe I might consider switching back to a Windows laptop…