It’s been over seventeen months since the release of the Microsoft Surface Pro 4. Last year, everyone expected the tech giant to deliver a new Surface Pro device. Events came and passed, but the Surface Pro 5 was never to be seen. Three months have passed from 2017, and the Microsoft Surface Pro 5 still hasn’t arrived. However, the rumors started intensifying, meaning that it will become reality soon. Or at least everyone hopes so. According to some people, the new Surface Pro could be launched sometime this spring.
Even though the image we now have about the upcoming Surface Pro is not exactly detailed, the majority of specs and features have become known. Others can be guessed. We’ve expected for quite a while now for the Microsoft Surface Pro 5. Will it be enough for users to upgrade from the Surface Pro 4? That’s yet to be seen. Let’s sum up what we know about the Microsoft Surface Pro 5 so far and compare it to the Microsoft Surface Pro 4 that launched in October 2015.
Microsoft Surface Pro 4
The Surface Pro 4 was basically an upgraded Microsoft Surface Pro 3. This was not a bad thing, given the fact that the Surface Pro 3 was a major success. Following such a device, the Surface Pro 4 only needed minor upgrades in order to be a good device. The design of the 2-in1 tablet was definitely a winning one. And it still is. The slim magnesium alloy body of the Microsoft Surface 4 and the 12.3-inch display turned it into many people’s favorite device. The Type Cover was also enhanced, making the backlit keyboard even easier and more comfortable to use. The screen resolution of the Surface Pro 4 is 2736×1824 at 267 PPI, with 3:2 aspect ratio and it supports 10-point multi-touch. The images are clear, full of details, and overall great.
Inside the Surface Pro 4, we can find one of Intel’s 6th generation Skylake m3, i5, or i7 processors. Depending on the version, the Pro 4 devices include 4, 8 or 16GB of RAM alongside 128, 256, 512 or 1024GB of internal storage. Naturally, the integrated GPU also changes along with the different versions. This way, the end result is also more than satisfying. The 2-in-1 tablet, surprise, runs on Microsoft’s Windows 10. Even though some people may like to use Android tablets, the Windows 10 tablets often prove to be more useful when users need them for work. Microsoft’s operating system offers everything one could need in order to create and edit documents, presentations, and much more. The software also offers the split screen feature, allowing users to use two different apps at the same time.
One thing that is not so great about the Microsoft Surface Pro 4 is its battery life. The device doesn’t perform nearly as well in tests as Microsoft initially announced. Unfortunately, it’s rather pointless having a great device if it isn’t able to last enough for us to watch a movie or complete our work. In some tests, the 2-in-1 tablet only managed to last for only 3 hours and 15 minutes on a single charge. In other tests, it managed to pull through 5 ours and 15 minutes. This is more reasonable, but it definitely isn’t as impressive as Microsoft promised. After all, the tech company stated that the Surface Pro 4 can go for up to 9 hours on a single charge. Maybe, if you don’t use it for anything, only look at it.
One of the best things about the Microsoft Pro 4 is the number of accessories people can use it with, and the quality of these. As I already mentioned the Type Cover that came at the same time with the Surface Pro 4 is a lot better than the one of the Surface Pro 3. The stylus compatible with the tablet also improved over time. These two are already enough for completing work, even in the art world. Another great accessory is the Surface Dock. This has 2 Mini DisplayPorts, 1 Gigabit Ethernet, 4 USB 3.0, and 1 audio out ports. Of course, the tablet already features a USB 3.0 port, Wi-FI, Bluetooth, and a headset jack. Unfortunately, the Microsoft Surface Pro 4 is not the most affordable device out there. Its pricing starts at $899 and can go as high as $2,699 for the top tier version.
Microsoft Surface Pro 5
Even though some people would really like to see a major change in the design of the upcoming Surface Pro 2-in-1 tablet, no one is really confident this will happen. It’s highly likely that the new tablet will have the same slim magnesium alloy body, probably in the same silver color. What could happen is that this time around we get a device with even slimmer bezels, so that Microsoft can squeeze a slightly bigger screen into the same size body. A bigger tablet wouldn’t really make any sense because a larger size would affect the portability of the gadget. In case users need a bigger device, they can always choose the Surface Book instead of a Surface Pro tablet. Even if the size of the display will not change, we could get a higher resolution and thus, higher image-quality.
When it comes to power, we might get some changes. Rumor has it that the new Microsoft Surface Pro 5 will feature Intel’s latest chip, the Kaby Lake, and seventh generation Core processors. Just like with the previous model, we will highly likely be available with at least three different processors. Depending on the processor, the RAM and SSD configuration will also change. Those who hoped for a USB Type-C connector are in for a big disappointment. According to sources, the Microsoft Surface Pro 5 2-in-1 tablet will stick to the same traditional USB connector users ca find on the previous model. We must admit, this is quite surprising, give the fact that the majority of new tablets and smartphones now have the reversible connector everyone loves.
We could see some serious improvements when it comes to accessories. Back in 2016, Microsoft developed a rechargeable stylus. This could easily be the upcoming tablet’s Surface Pen. Users could connect the stylus to the tablet via a USB connector. This way, the accessory would not disappear, and it would charge at the same time. The Surface Dial is also in the cards. This could definitely be one of the Microsoft Surface Pro 5’s accessories. Naturally, a Type Cover would also make sense. However, given the fact that the previous model’s keyboard was already quite terrific, it’s hard to imagine that the upcoming device will come with a lot better one.
Another major change could come from the software of the tablet. Microsoft’s Cortana will most likely be present on the new device. The AI assistant and the last Windows 10 improvements could turn this tablet into a great one. However, this might not be enough to convince people to upgrade from the Surface Pro 4. Longer battery life would definitely impress Surface Pro users. Even if this would mean a bulkier design. A longer battery life is certainly more important than a slim body. It would turn the Surface Pro 5 into a better, more useful device. If we get a higher resolution display also, watching movies could turn into a real pleasure instead of making people anxious that the tablet won’t pull through.
Given the fact that previous models were always at least as expensive as the previous ones, it’s safe to assume that Microsoft won’t make a change in this direction this time either. This means that even the less impressive Microsoft Surface Pro 5’s price will start at $899.
If Microsoft doesn;t come up with something truly innovative for the Microsoft Surface Pro 5, an upgrade isn;t really worth it. The Surface Pro 4 is already a great 2-in-1 tablet. The minor changes we can foresee at this moment will probably not convince Surface Pro 4 users to turn in their tablets for a newer one. However, if the tech giant pulls a stunt on us and impresses with a lot better battery life or some truly amazing accessories, an upgrade could be a wise choice.