Microsoft unveiled its new Surface Pro 3 yesterday during a press conference. With its debut, Microsoft also revealed a change in strategy: shifting the Microsoft Surface from just another tablet to a full-on laptop killer.
The laptop in the Surface Pro 3’s scope is the Macbook Air, which is viewed by many as one of the best laptops in the marketplace. However, some reviewers have noted that the Macbook Air’s latest iterations haven’t been as revolutionary as those in the past.
When the Macbook Air was introduced in 2008, many thought that it was a crazy concept for a laptop. Fast-forward six years later and every PC laptop maker has adopted its design.
Microsoft aims to take away from the Macbook’s 32% market share and its slew of imitators by offering the perfect fusion of a tablet and a laptop.
The Surface Pro 3 is slimmer and lighter than its predecessors at 9.1mm thick and 800 grams in weight. It boasts a large 12-inch screen with a 3:2 aspect ratio and an HD display. Also re-designed for the Pro 3 is the kickstand, which uses friction to stand and support a variety of angles. The smart-cover also received some upgrades with a new double magnetic hinge that stabilizes the cover more than previous models. Internally, it has an ultra-thin Intel i7 processor with over 100 custom parts. Models start at $799 but can increase based on which processor and other internal components you want.
Many tech sites have yet to review the new Surface Pro 3. However, the shift in strategy for Microsoft represents the current trend in laptop manufacturing. Companies have been trying to fuse the fun and function of a tablet with the portability and processing power of a laptop.
An interesting component of this debate is that Microsoft is planning on releasing a version of Photoshop that will be compatible with the Surface’s touchscreen. While touch-friendly Adobe apps already exist for iOS, this could be a revival of the Microsoft vs. Apple debate, and represent a challenge to Adobe’s perceived alliance with Apple hardware.
Microsoft has been competing with Apple for years, from the Microsoft store to its Windows Phone 8.1 devices. This is the first time that Microsoft has targeted an Apple product with a completely different product line.
The debate aside, there is still a very big gap within the tech space. To date, there is no true crossover product that can bridge the gap between tablet and laptop. The iPad Air and Surface Pro 3 come close, but more ground can still be gained. Time will tell whether or not Microsoft succeeds in killing the laptop.
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