As reported earlier in 2016, the second major update to Windows 10 was delayed until spring of next year to correspond with a new hardware launch. Purportedly, this lineup would consist of the Surface Pro 5 and Surface Book 2 , though a new Surface keyboard appears even more imminent.
Moreover, with Intel’s 14-nanometer Kaby Lake processors having just released, it wouldn’t be out of character for Redmond to push back the hardware a few months. As the previous Surface Pro 4 and Surface Book encountered technical issues early on, it makes sense for Microsoft to allot itself time with the new CPU architecture.
Regardless of when the Surface Pro 5 finally arrives, you don’t need to wait for the next iteration to get your hands on a Surface Pro as Microsoft recently revealed a subscription program that lets you upgrade to new hardware as it’s released.
All of these innovations are just stoking the fires of the Internet rumor mill, generating speculation about what novelties Microsoft will debut with the next Surface Pro. Though there is so far precious little in the way of official detail, we’ll use this space to collect the news, predictions, and rumors about the Microsoft Surface Pro 5 as they emerge.
Surface Pro 5 Specs: Exciting stuff coming our way or too much hype for nothing?
Despite the major delay, Microsoft might make up for it by bringing a slew of brilliant specs and hardware upgrades.
As far as the CPU is concerned, there are two scenarios. Either Microsoft sticks to its tradition and maintains Intel’s Kaby Lake on, or it shifts to a more mobile-friendly option and goes with Qualcomm’s Snapdragon.
With respect to the latter assumption, it is based on the fact that since MSFT demoed Windows 10 running on an ARM processor, the device could switch to a Snapdragon SoC, in an effort to boost battery life.
Nevertheless, we would bet our money on a 7th-generation Intel Kaby Lake Core i7, because, after all, the Surface Pro 5 is a powerful desktop squeezed into the hardware of a tablet.
Furthermore, reports also suggest that the baseline models could undergo a memory boost, meaning that the cheapest variants of the series will come with a proper 16GB RAM.
Additionally, for those eager to get their hands deeper into their pockets, the top-tier should come with a 4K display, while the rest versions will carry the good old 2K one.
In terms of connectivity, Redmond will drop the USB 3.0 import and supplant it with the fresh Type-C one, offering reversible connection and faster charging.
We are also expecting the Surface Pen stylus to be integrated with a rechargeable battery, that charges automatically once magnetically attached to the device. The current model is backed by alkaline AAAA battery.
Surface Pro 5 stylus
One piece of the puzzle regarding every new Surface is how Microsoft will upgrade its Surface Pen stylus accessory that comes bundled with each tablet. Uncovered earlier this year was a patent filed by Microsoft for a stylus that features a rechargeable battery system.
Specifically, the patent details a magnetic charging dock built to give the new Surface Pen its juice, seemingly with connectors meant for a Surface Dock mounting. Such a venture makes a lot of sense for Microsoft, as the iPad Pro ‘s Apple Pencil currently has this exact edge over the Surface Pen, able to charge by awkwardly connecting to the tablet via its Lightning port.
Straight up, the Surface Pro 4 is expensive — unless you opt for the very entry-level $899 model (£749, AU$1,349). For that price, you get a tablet with an Intel Core M3 CPU, 128GB of solid state storage and 4GB of RAM, plus a touchscreen stylus. Add in a more robust, Intel Skylake processor and the price increases to $999; upgrade the storage to 256GB and the RAM to 8GB, and you’re at $1,299. An even faster processor and bigger hard drive could push the price above $2,000.
For reference, the new Microsoft Surface Book i7 starts at $2,399. (That converts to approximately AU$3,150 and £2,000 in Australia and the UK, respectively.) Back in March, News Everyday published a report that the Surface Pro 5’s will start at $899; an Intel Core i7 model will cost $999; and the i7 Extreme version will cost for $1,599.