On Tuesday, Microsoft unveiled its latest and most significant product to date - the Surface Book - a laptop-tablet hybrid mean machine. It's also the first laptop ever built by the company!
During the Windows 10 Devices launch event, Microsoft's Surface head, Panos Panay can't help but to take a cheeky dig at one of the major competitors - Apple
"We have competitors, you may have noticed," said Microsoft's Panos Panay, referring to the Surface and other competitor tablets launched with keyboards, "they're chasing it, it's pretty cool."
The next call-out to Apple made by Panay was in the newest version of the Surface Pen - this time about Apple's Pencil. "It's kinda funny, there's a pencil out there without an eraser," said Panay.
He even compared the Surface Book to the MacBook Pro, saying the former was the most superior of the two
The Surface Book is “the ultimate laptop,” said Panos Panay, Microsoft’s Surface head. “Ounce for ounce, pound for pound, this is the fastest 13-inch laptop ever made.” He made the bold claim that Microsoft’s laptop will be twice as fast as one of Apple’s MacBook Pro laptops.wsj.com
Panay's claims are understandable, because the Surface Book is remarkable. For starters, the screen is detachable and can be used as a tablet!
Microsoft is changing up the Surface line today with the introduction of a Surface laptop called the Surface Book. It's the first laptop ever built by Microsoft. But it's a lot more than a laptop. The screen is actually fully removable so that it can be used as a tablet. If you put the screen back on, you can also choose to flip it all the way around and use it like a convertible, with the keyboard propping it up.theverge.com
Users can detach the laptop's display from a unique dynamic fulcrum hinge - an innovative bend that locks everything in place and rolls out like a carpet
The Surface Book’s display detaches from a unique “dynamic fulcrum hinge,” an innovative way to bend that thankfully locks rigidly in place. Because of the hinge’s curve, though, it’s impossible to close the laptop all the way, which might rankle the especially orderly.
Tablet mode becomes possible because the battery and Intel Core processor are built into the screen half of the hybrid laptop, while that high-powered GPU is in the keyboard base. The idea is that you’d use the device in laptop mode, while connected to that graphics processor, when playing games, editing video, or typing.
Furnished with silver machined magnesium, the Surface Book includes a 13.5-inch glass screen. It looks, uncannily similar to the MacBook Pro.
Microsoft has always known for its awful trackpad and keyboard, but the company is breaking free from that with the Surface Book
The keyboard and trackpad attached to the Surface Book are both fantastic. The trackpad is certainly comparable to those found on MacBooks. The keyboard is fully-sized, but has chiclet-style keys that offer a significant amount of resistance when pushing down.fortune.com
The keyboard also includes a backlit keyboard. There's also deeper keys, with 1.6mm of travel. Microsoft is kind of freaking out about this keyboard. It's calling it "perfect" and saying it'll type almost silently.theverge.com
On the inside, the Surface Book really shines. It comes with either an i5 or i7 processor, a standalone Nvidia GPU (Graphics Processor Unit) and high RAM capacity
With either the latest Intel Core i5 or i7 processors, the Nvidia GPU with 1GB of GDDR5 memory, either 8GB or 16GB of RAM and PCIe flash storage ranging from 128GB to 1TB, the Surface Book is one power-packed computing machine.techradar.com
Other features include two USB ports, a card reader, 5-megapixel (MP) front-facing shooter and a 12-hour long battery life
When it comes to inputs, Microsoft managed to cram in two USB 3.0 ports, a full-size SD card reader, mini DisplayPort, a headphone/microphone jack and the firm's own Surface Connect port for power and docking. Naturally, this device has cameras: a 5-megapixel (MP) front-facing shooter with Windows Hello face authentication and an 8MP snapper in the back – both of which can record 1080p video.techradar.com
Microsoft also claims 12 hours of battery life in laptop mode and three in tablet mode, but your mileage will obviously vary depending on usage.wired.com
As for pricing, the 128 GB model costs USD1,499 while the 1TB option goes up to USD2,699. No Malaysia pricing has been confirmed yet, but we're expecting more details in the coming days.
Obviously, Microsoft is attacking Apple’s core business with vigor and it seems to be working. With the introduction of its very first laptop product, the tech company is planning to finish off the year with all guns blazing.