We recently covered all the reasons why the Surface range of products from Microsoft was critical to their long-term plans of bringing Windows 10 to mobile devices so they can run desktop applications the way a normal PC can. With the Surface Pro 5 now lurking around the corner, here’s what we expect from the next generation of Surface Pro 2-in-1 hybrid tablets.
The first big feature is the Kaby Lake 7th Gen Core processor from Intel. It’s likely that Microsoft is already awaiting shipments. Intel’s roadmap, if on track, should help push the Surface Pro 5 release to early 2017.
CES 2017 might be far too early to expect the Surface Pro 5 to be announced (but you never know), but the Mobile World Congress (MWC 2017) in Barcelona in February, 2017 would be a reasonable assumption if that is, indeed, the case.
A later possibility would be sometime around April, but everything depends how tight their schedule is for the release and how well they keep to that schedule. We can safely assume that Microsoft wants it moving off the shelves as soon as possible.
The current Surface Pro 4 already ships with 1TB memory and 16GB RAM, so we should see comparable or better specs on the Surface Pro 5 next year. In fact, the model with these specs is now retailing at a discounted price of $2,119.99 – 21% off the list price of $2,699 – on Amazon.com. That’s a clearance-type sale that also points to a Surface Pro 5 coming soon.
See the Surface Pro 4 Offer on Amazon.com
Of course, the Thunderbolt 3 USB-C combo will also help set the tone for a device that befits 2017, as will a rechargeable Surface Pen that’s expected to feature alongside the Surface Pro 5.
As we said in our earlier article, Surface devices, including the Surface Pro line, aren’t going to be challenging iPad’s numbers any time soon, but the double-digit growth they’ve shown sequentially over the past several quarters does show that this is a strong brand with strong demand, especially in the enterprise segment because of Microsoft’s legacy software that ships with the devices.
That, and the fact that the Surface Pro 5 could coincide with the release of Windows 10 Creators Update should make this an even more exciting release.
SEE: Don’t Look at Microsoft Surface Sales, Look at the Growth Instead
If the Surface Pro 5 does come with the latest Kaby Lake hardware under the hood, it could well challenge the MacBook Pro in terms of performance power. Apple fell hard with the battery inconsistencies on the new MacBook Pro 2016, so this is something Microsoft can easily use to its advantage on the new Surface Pro 5.
One of the biggest reasons the Surface Pro 5 will be an iconic device is because it is solely aimed at enterprise users. With access to Windows 10, the Office suite and other productivity tools that will likely ship with the product, Microsoft is slowly blurring the battle line drawn between desktop devices and mobile devices.
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