Microsoft unveiled the Surface Book 2 today, which it claims is twice as powerful as Apple’s MacBook Pro. The Microsoft Surface Book 2 has received a nice bump in specs from those of its predecessor and is now also available in a 15-inch screen in addition to the 13-inch option. With the company making such a bold claim, you can bet the tech blog-o-sphere will put the laptop to the test versus the MacBook Pro, so the company had better be 200% certain that it will come out on top.
According to the company, the Microsoft Surface Book 2 “removes the barrier between the desktop and the laptop.” In addition to the standard laptop mode, the device can also be used in tablet, studio and view modes. For tablet mode, users remove the display from the keyboard so that it becomes just a tablet, while for studio mode, users fold the laptop down and draw on it using the Surface Dial and Surface Pen. View mode is accessed by detaching the screen, flipping it around and then reattaching it to the keyboard so that the laptop sits up and can be used for watching videos or showing presentations.
The Microsoft Surface Book 2 can be customized with an Intel Core i5 or i7 processor and up to NVIDIA’s GeForce GTX 1060 graphics. The 13-inch and 15-inch PixelSense displays can be customized up to 267 pixels per inch, while the RAM can range up to 16GB. Microsoft claims that the laptop offers up to 17 hours of battery life and 70% more battery life than the 13-inch MacBook Pro. The company also claims that the Surface Book 2 has a higher resolution than the MacBook Pro with 45% more pixels. Clearly, Microsoft is angling for the artistic crowd, which has favored Apple products historically.
The laptop is designed to run professional-grade software and supports the company’s new Windows Mixed Reality Ultra experiences for immersive virtual reality games when paired with a headset and motion controller. While Microsoft is generally known for its productivity offerings, it seems that the Microsoft Surface Book 2 is aimed just as much at gamers as it is at professionals. The laptop will work with Xbox One controllers and compatible headsets. While most professional-level laptops weight eight to ten pounds, the 13-inch Surface Book 2 weighs only 3.38 pounds and the 15-inch model weighs just 4.2 pounds.
The Microsoft Surface Book 2 starts at $1,499 for the 13-inch model and $2,499 for the 15-inch model. Preorders begin Nov. 9 in the U.S. and some other markets, with deliveries starting on Nov. 16.