Talk about the tech world’s best kept secret. While we knew everything there was to know well in advance of the official announcements of all the hot new high-end phones around, and even Microsoft spilled the beans on the fifth-gen Surface Pro a few days ahead of its formal debut, the Surface Book 2 just came out of nowhere.
We were obviously expecting a proper sequel to Redmond’s first ever laptop, launched way back in 2015, last fall, then this past spring, but we repeatedly heard from very credible inside sources that the largely software-focused company was taking its time.
Perhaps motivated by ridiculous rumors of the Surface lineup’s imminent death, Microsoft decided to pull the trigger and introduce not one, but two massively upgraded 2-in-1 PCs.
Uncompromising product designers, gamers, architects and developers will be happy to hear the Surface Book 2 packs Intel’s full range of 8th Gen Core processors, along with NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 and 1060 discrete graphics options.
Speaking of options, you can now choose between 13 and 15-inch versions, both of which are remarkably lightweight for the horsepower they provide. The smaller model tips the scales at 3.38 pounds, while the larger ultra-high-end Windows 10 computer only gains around 13 ounces with its detachable display connected to a slightly improved keyboard.
Compared to the original, the Surface Book 2 is billed as “five times more powerful”, somehow retaining a mind-blowing “all-day battery life.” Namely, up to 17 hours of continuous video playback, which just so happens to be “70% more than the latest MacBook Pro.” And of course, the Surface Book 2 is also “twice as powerful as the latest MacBook Pro.”
We’ll clearly need to fact-check all that, and take the “beautifully designed” 13 and 15-inchers for a spin in the real world shortly after their November 16 commercial rollouts. For the time being, it’s certainly nice to see everything from USB-A to USB-C (finally!) and a full-size SD card reader squeezed onto the razor-thin Surface Book 2 profile.
The hinge has apparently been revamped for a “smoother, faster detach into Tablet or Studio Mode”, the 15-incher sports 45 percent more “dazzling pixels” than the MacBook Pro, and all configurations, regardless of screen size, CPU and GPU, are compatible with Windows Mixed Reality headsets.
The Surface Book 2 13-inch will kick off pre-orders on November 9 in the US and “additional markets around the world” at $1,499 and up, while the 15-inch variant is exclusively coming to the US on the same date starting at a whopping $2,499.