Microsoft's Haswell-based Surface Pro 2: The leaks begin

Summary:Microsoft's new Surface Pro 2 is expected, unsurprisingly, to be a Core i5 'Haswell' based update to the current Surface Pro, according to new reports.

Microsoft officials have said earlier this summer that the company is planning to release some time during its fiscal 2014 (ending June 30, 2014) "updates" to its Surface line of tablets .

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That's all the company has said publicly. Privately, sources are beginning to leak tidbits from unnamed sources about what the new Surfaces will look like.

NeoWin.net posted on September 4 that the Intel-based Surface 2 will run Intel's next-generation Core i5 "Haswell" processor. Neowin also said RAM will be doubled from 4 GB to 8 GB and that the new model will include a "refined" kickstand.

Paul Thurrott on the Windows SuperSite corroborated the Core i5 Haswell information. Thurrott also said that the battery life of the Surface Pro 2 will go from the current four to five hours to up to seven hours.

Thurrott said the Surface Pro 2 will offer a choice of RAM, possibly 4 GB and 8 GB options. He added that the new Surface Pro will look identical to the current Surface Pro -- which makes sense, given Microsoft is expected to allow the same keyboard/covers to work with the new Surface models. And as far as the "refined" kickstand goes, Thurrott claims the new kickstand will offer two different positions, instead of being locked into one on the current Surface Pros.

Neither Neowin nor Thurrott is reporting anything new on the pricing. But both are predicting it won't change much from current Surface Pro pricing, meaning it could start around $799 (U.S.) if Microsoft matches the recently reduced Surface Pro price .

Surface Pro 2 is expected to come with Windows 8.1 preinstalled. Like the first-generation Surface, it will offer users the ability to run existing desktop apps, as well as new Metro-Style/Windows Store apps. 

I asked Microsoft officials if they'd comment on any of the new Surface leaks and, unsurprisingly, a spokesperson declined.

The new version of the ARM-based Surface will be called Surface 2, rather than Surface RT 2, Thurrott has reported. That updated tablet is expected to run an updated NVIDIA Tegra processor, according to source reports. Additional specs for the Surface 2 haven't leaked (yet).

Many Microsoft watchers are expecting Microsoft to launch its new Surfaces on or around the time Windows 8.1 launches, which is October 18 . Microsoft officials have not said this will be the case, however.

Update: A few readers asked Thurrott on Twitter if the Surface Pro 2 would include LTE/wireless support. He said his sources are indicating it will not.

Topics: Microsoft Surface, Mobility, PCs, Tablets, Windows 8

About

Mary Jo Foley has covered the tech industry for 30 years for a variety of publications, including ZDNet, eWeek and Baseline. She is the author of Microsoft 2.0: How Microsoft plans to stay relevant in the post-Gates era (John Wiley & Sons, 2008). She also is the cohost of the "Windows Weekly" podcast on the TWiT network. Got a tip? Se... Full Bio

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