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Surface Pro 3: all the news from Microsoft's third try at tablets

Microsoft is hoping that the third time is the charm for its line of Surface tablets, following two poorly-selling earlier devices. The new Surface Pro 3 is bigger, thinner and faster than its predecessors, but will that be enough to convince consumers to ditch their laptops and forgo Apple's far more popular iPad? Follow Microsoft's third swing in the tablet ballgame here.

  • Josh Lowensohn

    Nov 25, 2014

    Josh Lowensohn

    Microsoft can't explain why its Surface tablet needs a pen

    Microsoft

    What can you do in 30 seconds? If it’s an advertisement for the Surface, the answer is: a lot. For the past two years, Microsoft has been showing the tablet running the full version of Office, editing photos in Adobe Photoshop, and converting into either a tablet or a notebook on the fly. But one thing Microsoft hasn’t been able to do very well in 30 seconds is explain why the Surface needs a stylus, which in an era of stroking our screens has long seemed antiquated.

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  • Dieter Bohn

    May 23, 2014

    Dieter Bohn

    This is Microsoft's new Surface Pro 3, in pictures

    The new Surface Pro 3 is on sale and Microsoft has finally achieved its vision of combining a laptop and a tablet into a device that doesn't have too many compromises. This is simply the best hardware that Microsoft has ever produced and even if you aren't a big fan of Windows, you can at least appreciate the flagship hardware it runs on.

    The tablet weighs 1.76 pounds (without the new Type Cover) and is .36 inches thick. The display is now bigger too, it's a nicely-sized 12-inch touchscreen with a tack-sharp resolution of 2160 x 1440. One of our favorite features is the new kickstand, which uses friction and can hold the device up at any angle. The Type Cover has been redesigned too, and is much better than previous models.

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  • Dieter Bohn

    May 23, 2014

    Dieter Bohn

    Microsoft Surface Pro 3 review

    Imagine if you had a time machine that could send you back exactly 13 years. The rules of time travel don’t let you change the past, but they do allow you to ask one question of a single person (time travel is, after all, very complicated). If your question for somebody in 2001 was “What will the future of computing look like,” they’d probably give you an answer that would sound very much like the Surface Pro 3.

    That’s both good and bad. It’s good because the Surface Pro 3 is indeed a futuristic machine, a marvel of engineering that combines tons of crazy features into a thin and light package. It’s bad because, well, in 2001 we had almost no way of knowing that in 2014 the whole idea of what a computer is and does would be changing so rapidly.

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  • Dieter Bohn

    May 21, 2014

    Dieter Bohn

    Can the Surface Pro 3 steal the MacBook Air’s crown?

    "I am sure, Satya. I am sure that is the tablet that can replace the laptop."

    Microsoft corporate vice president Panos Panay ended his marathon unveiling of the Surface Pro 3 by addressing his CEO, Satya Nadella. It seemed as if he was simultaneously pointing out that Nadella had helped create this vision and asking Nadella to have faith in the plan. Panay certainly wants to convince the rest of us to have faith — he had spent the last hour on the stage, extolling the virtues of the new tablet in a strident tone.

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  • Chris Welch

    May 20, 2014

    Chris Welch

    How does Microsoft's Surface Pro 3 stack up to Apple and the rest of the competition?

    Microsoft unveiled the Surface Pro 3 today, and now more than ever before, the company is pushing the message that this is a product capable of replacing your trusted and proven laptop. In his usual style, Surface chief Panos Panay boldly proclaimed that the Surface Pro 3 will remove the conflict of choosing between a tablet and laptop — that it's been designed without compromise with the best aspects of both.

    "I am sure that this is the tablet that can replace the laptop," Panay said. Those are big words indeed. Aside from Apple's MacBook Air, which Panay mentioned repeatedly on stage, Microsoft is finally facing improved (and genuinely impressive) competition from Windows machine manufacturers like Lenovo too. The Surface Pro 3 has clearly been designed to be more productive than an iPad Air, but can it really unseat leading laptops like Apple's MacBook Air and Lenovo's Yoga 2 Pro?

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  • Kwame Opam

    May 20, 2014

    Kwame Opam

    Microsoft reportedly canceled plans to unveil the Surface Mini

    Details of Microsoft's rumored Surface Mini first appeared more than a year ago, so it was expected that the product would see an official reveal at today's event. No such unveiling happened. According to Bloomberg, even though Microsoft has been developing a smaller tablet for some time, CEO Satya Nadella and Executive VP Stephen Elop backed away from the project. It's now not clear if and when it will ever come out.

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  • May 20, 2014

    Dan Seifert, Dieter Bohn and 1 more

    Microsoft Surface Pro 3 hands-on: bigger, thinner, faster

    Microsoft made one thing clear: it wants its new Surface Pro 3 to be able to replace your laptop. It's a bold goal, but Microsoft thinks it has the right combination of power and portability to make it work. The new Surface is bigger than the earlier two models with a 12-inch display, but it's also thinner, at 9.1 millimeters thick, and lighter, at 1.8 pounds. Inside all of that is one of several different Intel Core processors, running from an i3 up to an i7. Surface chief Panos Panay says it's "the thinnest Intel Core product ever made," and it certainly makes for a device that feels extremely light to hold.

    One of the other big improvements to the Surface Pro 3 is its new "friction-hinge." It feels really firm, reliable, and smooth, and it's able to sit at a much lower angle now, which should make it easier to use while writing from above. This hinge works at any angle within its range and at least at first blush, we're not too worried that it will not be able to hold its angle over the life of the device. Microsoft is touting the Surface Pro 3's "lapability" and indeed, putting the Surface on your lap is much less awkward than it used to be (but no, it's still not quite as hassle-free as an actual laptop).

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  • Tom Warren

    May 20, 2014

    Tom Warren

    Microsoft's Surface Pro 3 is designed to destroy the laptop

    Microsoft has unveiled a new Surface Pro 3 device at a press event in New York City today. Like the previous Surface tablets it still includes a kickstand, but Surface chief Panos Panay says it's designed to remove the conflict of buying a laptop or a tablet. The kickstand on the device is multi-stage, and the device is just 9.1mm thick. "This is the tablet that can replace your laptop," claims Panay. Microsoft has moved to a 12-inch screen on the Surface Pro 3 with a 3:2 aspect ratio and HD display, but the new tablet also has thin bezels with a silver and black design. Microsoft will start accepting pre-orders on the Surface Pro 3 tomorrow starting at $799.

    Along with the Surface Pro 3 being a lot thinner, it's also a lot lighter than the previous models as it's 800 grams in weight. The weight of the original Surface Pro tablets was a big drawback, and it appears Microsoft has really focused on removing the bulk this time around. Panay used Apple's MacBook Air to compare the popular laptop with the new Surface Pro 3 on stage at Microsoft's event in New York City today, noting the weight benefits and screen resolution improvements. Microsoft has also been working closely with Intel to ensure the Surface Pro 3 includes the latest Core i7 processors. The processor still requires a fan, but Microsoft has refined the chassis on the Surface Pro 3 so you no longer notice the fan ridge the company used on the Surface Pro and Surface Pro 2.

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