Microsoft has unveiled the Surface Pro 3 tablet claiming the device offers superior performance to both the Apple iPad and its 13in Macbook Air, as the firm looks to grow its coverage in the hardware market.
The Surface Pro 3 features a redesigned version of the magnesium chassis seen on the Surface Pro 2 and houses a larger 12in, 3:2 aspect ratio 2160x1440 Cleartype display. This is notable larger than the 10.6in found on the Surface Pro 2.
The Surface Pro 3 will be available for pre-order from Wednesday from $799. Availability for the US and Canada is set for 20 June and other markets, including the UK, by August.
Microsoft corporate vice president for Surface Computing Panos Panay listed the display as a key selling point, claiming it will help make the Surface Pro 3 the first true laptop-tablet, all-in-one hybrid device.
"Tablets from a product making perspective are designed for you to watch movies, read books, browse the web, snack on apps. Laptops are not designed that way at all, they're designed to get stuff done. They're designed for editing for making," he said.
"You've been told you need a tablet but you know you need a laptop. This is a conflict for many people. Today we're going to take the conflict away with the Surface Pro 3 [...] Because of the 12in screen and the work we did on Windows to optimise it, it will be great to use as both a tablet and a laptop."
He said despite being smaller than a Macbook 13in device the Surface Pro 3's screen will let users view and interact with, "six percent more content than they can on a 13in Macbook Air" due to its aspect ratio.
The Surface Pro 3 will also feature a new custom docking station that will let users connect the device to a 4K display and use it as a desktop replacement.
The Surface Pro 3 is set to be powered Intel Core i3, i5 or i7 processors and Panay claimed the i7 configuration will offer users 10 percent more performance than the Surface Pro 2.
Despite the use of the high power processors the Surface Pro 3 only weighs 800g and measures in at just 9.1mm thick. Panay said the measurements make the Surface Pro 3 the thinnest Intel Core device ever made.
Microsoft also redesigned the Surface Pro 3's kickstand and set of attachable keyboard Type Cover. The new cover is thinner than previous Surface Pro tablets' and feature a redesigned trackpad that is 68 percent larger than earlier Type Covers'.
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