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Microsoft’s Surface blurs the line between tablet and PC

A full two years after Apple showed the world how viable tablets could be with the original iPad, Microsoft finally has a competitor. At a secretive event in Los Angeles on Monday, the company unveiled Surface, an ultra-slim tablet designed for Windows 8.

Because Windows 8 will actually come in two flavors, so will the Surface. Microsoft will offer both an ARM-based tablet running Windows 8 RT, and a thicker, heavier version with an Intel Core i5 processor running Windows 8 Pro. The Pro version will include a full HD 1080p screen, and both models will offer an incredibly thin stand that folds out of the rear to support it like a picture frame.

Naturally, that means you can get a keyboard for it, too – once again in two variants. The Surface Touch Keyboard cover uses multitouch technology to keep it as thin as possible, while a beefier Type Keyboard features real moving keys, similar to what you might be used to on a laptop.

Microsoft has not yet announced a release date or pricing information for either Surface model, but the first Windows 8 hardware is expected to arrive this fall.

For more on the Surface tablets check out Microsoft Surface tablets unveiled with screen cover that doubles as keyboard.