Microsoft launches Surface Book 2

Microsoft launches Surface Book 2

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Microsoft has launched a new version of its flagship notebook computer, the Surface Book 2. The new machine has updated design, updated internals, updated connectivity, improved battery life and now comes in two sizes.

The Surface Book 2 looks mostly similar to the original, with a removable tablet screen that has its own processor and battery that can be plugged into the keyboard facing either direction for even more performance and battery life. The design has been updated in small ways, such as in the way the hinge works and the keyboard, which makes it work a bit better.

But the biggest new feature is that the new Surface Book 2 comes in two sizes, 13.5-inch and 15-inch. The smaller model has a 3000×2000 display and the larger one has a 3240×2160 display, both being touchscreens and compatible with the new Surface Pen and Surface Dial. The 15-inch model has ventilation along the display for fans but the 13.5-inch model has fanless.

Inside, both models are powered by the 7th generation Intel ‘Kaby Lake’ processors as well as the new 8th generation Intel ‘Coffee Lake’ processors. The Core i5-7300U found on the 13.5-inch model is Kaby Lake but you also get the new Core i7-8650U on both the 13.5-inch and 15-inch models, with i7 being the only option on the 15-inch.

In terms of graphics, the 13.5-inch model has Intel HD Graphics 620 (Kaby Lake), Intel UHD Graphics 620 (Coffee Lake) or NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 (2GB). The 15-inch gets Intel UHD Graphics 620 or NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 (6GB).

Both models come in a choice of 256GB, 512GB or 1TB solid state storage options with 8GB or 16GB 1866MHz LPDDR3 memory.

In terms of connectivity, the new machines have two USB-A 3.0 ports, one USB-C port, SD slot, headphone jack and the proprietary Surface connector. There is no Thunderbolt support.

Microsoft claims an improved battery life with the new machines, with 17 hours of video playback with the keyboard attached and 5 in tablet mode.

Prices start at $1499 for the 13.5-inch model and $2499 for the 15-inch model. Pre-orders start November 9 and the devices will ship on November 16.

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