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Microsoft adds new Arm-based Surface Pro X models, smaller Surface Laptop Go to its line-up

Microsoft's new holiday hardware includes updated Surface Pro X 2-in-1s starting at $1,500, and a new, smaller Surface Laptop Go, starting at $550.

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Microsoft is adding new SQ2 Arm-based Surface Pro X models to the Surface family.

Credit: Microsoft

Microsoft is taking pre-orders, starting today, October 1, for the newest members of its Surface PC family: Updated Arm-based Surface Pro X PCs and an Intel-based 12.4-inch Surface Laptop Go clamshell device. Microsoft is touting the new Pro X models as appealing to those who want thin and light mobile devices with built-in LTE, and the new Surface Laptop Gos as affordable PCs for home, school and work.

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New 12.4-inch Surface Laptop Go models start at $550.

Credit: Microsoft

Microsoft decided to forego a virtual fall launch event for its new Surface devices and instead unveiled them via a press release.
Microsoft did not announce updated versions of its Surface Pro, Surface Book, Surface Studio or Surface Go devices today, as some had been hoping and expecting. Last week, officials announced the 85-inch version of the Surface Hub 2S conferencing system, which goes on sale in the U.S. starting in January 2021.

The updated Surface Pro X configurations unveiled today, starting at $1,500 (minus the keyboard), add the new Microsoft- and Qualcomm-co-designed SQ2 processor, as well as a new Platinum finish option. Microsoft officials said all models of its Surface Pro X devices would offer longer battery life (Microsoft's claim is up to 15 hours) and increased performance as a result of "new app experiences." Among the new Windows-on-Arm apps Microsoft is highlighting are new versions of its Chromium-based Edge browser, Visual Studio Code and Microsoft Teams which are optimized for the platform and are faster and use less battery.

Microsoft execs also confirmed yesterday that Microsoft will run x64 apps with x64 emulation on Windows on Arm. Windows Insider testers will get to start testing this in November 2020.  

Here are the SKUs and prices for Surface Pro X after today's announcement:

Consumer (with Windows 10 Home on Arm)
• Surface Pro X - SQ 1/8/128, $999 USD
• Surface Pro X - SQ 1/8/256, $1,299 USD
• Surface Pro X - SQ 2/16/256, $1,499 USD
• Surface Pro X - SQ 2/16/512, $1,799 USD 

Commercial (with Windows 10 Pro on Arm)
• Surface Pro X - SQ 1/8/128, $1,099 USD
• Surface Pro X - SQ 1/8/256, $1,399 USD
• Surface Pro X - SQ 2/16/256, $1,599 USD
• Surface Pro X - SQ 2/16/512, $1,899 USD 

In addition to launching updated Arm-based Surface Pro X devices, Microsoft also added a new Intel 10th generation i5 Quad-Core-based clamshell laptop to its family. The 12.4-inch Surface Laptop Go -- the name of which implies a mash-up of a Surface Laptop and a small Surface Go tablet -- also made its debut today, starting at $550. Word of the coming smaller Surface Laptop, codenamed "Sparti," leaked last month, courtesy of Windows Central.

Microsoft officials characterized the Surface Laptop Go as "the lightest, most affordable Surface laptop yet." In addition to the PixelSense touchscreen display, the Surface Laptop Go includes a full-size keyboard (unlike the Surface Go); a precision trackpad, a built-in 720p camera and a choice of three metal finishes: Ice Blue, Sandstone and Platinum. (No mention of any fuzzy Alcantara, which, in my book, is a good thing.) The Surface Laptop Go will have a Fingerprint Power Button, enabling sign-in via Windows Hello using a fingerprint instead of a face. Users can configure the Laptop Go with up to 16 GB of RAM and 256 GB of storage. Microsoft is claiming it will have 13 hours of battery life. 

Here are the SKUs and prices for Surface Laptop Go after today's announcement:  

Consumer (with Windows 10 Home in S Mode)
• i5/4/64 (10th Gen), $549.99 USD
• i5/8/128 (10th Gen), $699.99 USD
• i5/8/256 (10th Gen), $899.99 USD 

EDU (Commercial) (with Windows 10 Pro)
• i5/4/64 (10th Gen), $549.99 USD
• i5/8/128 (10th Gen), $699.99 USD
• i5/8/256 (10th Gen), $899.99 USD
• i5/16/256 (10th Gen), $1,099.99 USD 

Commercial (Windows 10 Pro)
• i5/8/128 (10th Gen), $799.99 USD
• i5/8/256 (10th Gen), $999.99 USD
• i5/16/256 (10th Gen), $1,199.99 USD 

Update: Note that the base-level $549.99 models don't come with a fingerprint reader and also have eMMC storage, as Anandtech reported.

Microsoft also is announcing a bunch of new accessories today, as well: 

  • Microsoft Designer Compact Keyboard with Bluetooth switching between three devices, for $70.
  • Microsoft Number Pad, a dedicated number pad with Bluetooth wireless for $25.
  • Microsoft 4K Wireless Display Adapter for $70
  • Microsoft Bluetooth Ergonomic Mouse for $50.
  • Microsoft Modern Mobile Mouse in Sandstone to match Surface Laptop Go.

The new Laptop Go and Pro X configurations are available for preorder in select markets at the Microsoft online store on Microsoft.com and via other retailers. It will be available for purchase starting October 13. Microsoft also announced it will bring Surface to 11 new European markets: Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Estonia, Greece, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Romania, Slovakia and Slovenia.