Microsoft might not be at CES this year, but that hasn’t stopped the company’s CEO from jumping on stage to pass the annual keynote responsibility over to Qualcomm. While its OEMs are out in force with crazy Windows 8 designs and unreleased hardware, Microsoft is preparing its next step in the Surface family — Surface Pro. I got the chance to take an early look at a pre-production Surface Pro unit today, read on for everything you need to know about Microsoft’s next tablet.
Similar to the Surface RT, Surface Pro takes advantage of a built-in kickstand and Touch Cover / Type Cover combo to provide a tablet / notebook hybrid of sorts. This time Microsoft has angled the device at 26 degrees instead of 22 degrees, but if you compared the RT and Pro side-by-side it’s difficult to tell the difference at first glance. These devices are clearly family members, and Microsoft has made sure they match in ways that allow you to use the same cover on either tablet.
Surface Pro has a gorgeous 10.6-inch ClearType Full HD Display that outputs a 1920 x 1080 resolution. I say it’s gorgeous because this display is unprecedented on this type of device. Text reproduction and colors were spot on and viewing angles were great for tablet use. Aside from the resolution, Microsoft has packed in 10 points of multi-touch support and active pen input. The pen snaps magnetically to the side of the tablet and it has a small ridge that slots into the charging port. This magnetic charging port has been greatly improved from the Surface RT, it’s a lot stronger and it’s noticeable when you remove the pen or slot the charging cable into place.
I’m undecided on the pro.. The thinnest of the RT has been one of the nicer details…