Microsoft has started updating the Intel processor in its Surface Pro 2 tablets. The software giant originally released the Surface Pro 2 on October 22nd, and after just two months the latest retail units now contain a processor clocked at 1.9GHz instead of the stock 1.6GHz Intel i5-4200U chip that originally shipped with the tablet.
A Microsoft spokesperson confirmed the change in a statement to The Verge. "Microsoft routinely makes small changes to internal components over the lifetime of a product, based on numerous factors including supply chain partnerships, availability, and value for our customers," says a Microsoft spokesperson. "With any change to hardware or software, we work to ensure that the product experience remains excellent."
New models appear to have started shipping in late December
One Surface Pro 2 owner noticed the change after swapping his faulty unit following a recent firmware update issue. Recent Geekbench scores suggest Microsoft made the change in late December, but Microsoft has not provided timing to The Verge. Aside from the speed improvement, the two Intel i5 processors (4200U and 4300U) are relatively similar. The new i5-4300U chipset is clocked higher, and it also includes Intel’s Trusted Execution Technology for improved software security.
The rationale behind a processor speed bump is unclear, and Microsoft isn’t commenting on its decision to improve the Surface Pro 2 components after just two months. Several recent reports have noted that Microsoft’s Surface 2 and Surface Pro 2 tablets have remained largely out of stock over the holidays, alongside the timing of the processor change on the Pro 2 model. The refreshed model is now filtering into retail channels, so any future stock should start to ship with the faster Intel processor.