Microsoft today unveiled the new Surface Pro, a long-awaited hardware refresh that promises improved performance and battery life. The new Surface Pen boasts 4096 pressure levels and tilt sensitivity.
In his blog post today, Microsoft Corporate Vice President Panos Panay wrote, "Surface Pro continues the iconic look and feel of previous Surface Pros, but has been completely redesigned from the inside out. We’ve optimized every millimeter, with over 800 new custom parts and used 99% of the space inside the device – to give people exactly what they need to work and create anytime, anywhere."
The new Surface Pro features 7th Generation Intel processors: the Core m3-7Y30, i5-7300U or the i7-7660U. The i7 model features Intel Iris Plus Graphics 640.
The 12.3-inch PixelSense Display offers 2736 x 1824 resolution (267 PPI). The company claims this is the lightest Surface Pro ever, starting at 1.7 lbs. It will have 13.5 hours of continuous battery life (video playback).
An improved hinge offers 165-degree range of movement. Microsoft is calling the lowest angle "Studio Mode," after the Surface Studio, but it's unclear how this varies from current devices.
Fan noise has been reduced, even in the highest powered model. New type covers are offered in a variety of colors, all with Alcantara fabric.
Although Microsoft did not mention them, we assume the new pen is the outcome of the company's collaboration with Wacom because the specs are the same as the dual protocol pen announced over a year ago. The new pen video released below confirms that the pen offers true tilt sensitivity, as it demonstrates the pen working with Expresii software. No mention was made of whether the pen's new features would be backwards compatible.
UPDATE: The Microsoft Store claims that the pen is compatible with the Surface 3, Surface Pro 3 and 4, Surface Book, Studio and Laptop. Tilt support will be added to these devices via a future Windows Update.
The new Surface Pro will be available for pre-order today in configurations with 4, 8 and 16 GB of RAM and storage ranging from 128 GB to 1 TB. Models begin at $800 and are expected to ship June 15.