Microsoft Announces ‘Surface’ Tablet, No Pricing or Release Date

Today, Microsoft held a super secret event in Los Angeles to announce a “very important” product.  And while no specific information was provided to the press ahead of time, most analysts and bloggers (including us!) were pretty sure a Microsoft tablet device was in the pipeline. Boy, were we right. Microsoft released their new tablet under the name Microsoft ‘Surface’, a name borrowed from their tabletop touchscreen computer. This tablet will come in two incompatible variants, one running Windows RT with an ARM based processor and an Intel Core i5 based model with Windows 8 Professional preinstalled.

In terms of design, the Microsoft Surface looks very similar to the iPad when viewed from the front. The screen is a bit larger than the iPad, coming in at 10.6-inch with a full HD screen resolution. The backside of the Surface, however, looks totally different than the iPad as it shows a lot of seams and has a completely flat surface.

The tablet was also announced with two different covers, the Touch Cover and the Type Cover. The Touch Cover is an interesting case. While it looks like a Smart Cover clone (it even attaches with magnets) from the outside, it actually has a built-in keyboard. While this may sound good in theory, the keyboard and trackpad are made of soft plastic and lay flat. Even though I haven’t had a chance to try the Touch Cover for myself, I’m guessing it would be pretty uncomfortable to type on since the keyboard appears to lack of angle and feedback. The Type Cover is a premium version of the Touch Cover, featuring a hard plastic keyboard that actually looks remotely comfortable to type on.

As of now, Microsoft hasn’t given a retail price or availability date for the Surface. The only thing we’ve heard Microsoft say about the Surface is that it will be available soon and will be “competitively priced”. This lack of information on the day of announcement doesn’t look too good on Microsoft’s part.

Now that you’ve heard my thoughts on the Microsoft Surface, what do you think? Let us know in the comment box below this blog post!

Source and Image Credit: Microsoft

Andrew is a geek, Apple enthusiast, blogger and coffee lover from Chicago.