Microsoft's flagship Windows 10 Surface Book 2 range quietly adds new model

New 13.5-inch Surface Book 2 with Intel 8th Gen Core i5 costs the same as the line-up's entry-level machine at launch in late 2017.

Microsoft Surface Book 2 first look

Microsoft has added a new tier to its Surface Book 2 lineup with the introduction of a laptop with an Intel 8th generation Core i5 processor. 

The new configuration Surface Book 2 is a rung up from the base model launched in 2017 that came with a dual-core 7th generation Intel Core i5 processor and below the higher-end options with 8th generation Core i7 processors. Previously there was no 8th generation Core i5 offering. 

The new Core i5 option at the Microsoft Store is available on the 13.5-inch Surface Book 2, with 8GB of RAM and 256GB of storage for $1,499. 

Meanwhile, the entry-level Surface Book 2 with a 13.5-inch display costs $1,149 and remains an option for those who don't want the new quad-core Intel CPU and only need 8GB of RAM and 128GB of storage. 

When Microsoft launched the Surface Book 2, the cheapest model with a 7th generation Core i5 cost $1,499, which came with 8GB of RAM and 256GB of storage.    

SEE: 20 pro tips to make Windows 10 work the way you want (free PDF)    

Microsoft launched the Surface Book 2 as a Windows 10 alternative to Apple's MacBook Pro, with distinguishing features such as a detachable touch screen. 

The Surface Book 2 is also available with a 15-inch screen, which comes with 16GB of RAM and an 8th generation Intel Core i7 with an Nvidia GeForce discrete GPU, and storage options of 256GB, 512GB and 1TB. That model's price tops out at $3,299. 

The new 8th generation quad-core Core i5 option is only available in a configuration with a 13.5-inch display, 8GB of RAM, and 256GB of storage. 

It's not known when Microsoft intends to release a Surface Book 3. However, in a fortnight it will hold an event in New York City to unveil its Surface Hub 2 conferencing systems

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