Microsoft unveiled several new products during its 2023 Surface event. We got lots of updates about Windows Copilot and other AI-driven software upgrades, as well as plenty of hardware, including the Surface Laptop Studio 2 and the Surface Laptop Go 3.
While a lot of our early predictions came true during the Microsoft September event, there are still a few things that were noticeably missing from this year’s lineup. Here’s what Microsoft could have announced, but didn’t.
Many people were holding out hope for a Surface Pro 10, but for now, it remains a mere rumor. It’s surprising that Microsoft chose this year to skip the Surface Pro, seeing as it is the 10th anniversary of its launch. It would have been neat to release the 10th Pro on its 10th anniversary, but alas, the Surface Pro 9 remains the most recent version for now.
We’ve still heard a fair amount of leaks about the Surface Pro 10. In terms of design, it’s rumored to be almost the same as the previous iteration, with a 2-in-1 design and an attachable Type Cover keyboard. The Surface Pro 10 is said to come in two sizes, including 13-inch and 11-inch options.
It’s too early to talk about the specs for this device — we don’t even know if Microsoft is planning to launch it with an Intel chip or in Intel and ARM configurations. Next-gen Qualcomm chips aren’t coming out until 2024, so that could have played a part in this delay.
The small 11-inch version is really more of a tablet than a laptop, which kind of explains why Microsoft may have chosen to wait a bit longer. The September event covered loads of updates to Windows and Bing, but mobile devices were mostly absent. It’s possible that Microsoft will launch the Surface Pro 10 when it’s ready to talk about some additional tablet optimizations for Windows 11, or even Windows 12, which is set to come out in 2024. We’re unlikely to see the Surface Pro 10 in 2023 at this point.
The Surface Laptop 6 was another surprising absentee at this year’s Surface event. Up until now, Microsoft has launched a new version of this device every year since 2017, so it seemed like a safe bet for every September event. The Surface Laptop 5 (2022) is still the most recent version, so Microsoft may have abandoned its yearly tradition, though it’s still possible that we’ll see it later this year, though.
There have been some rumors about this laptop, but a lot of them pointed to an October 2023 release date, so it’s hard to say how much of it is legit. The Surface Laptop 6 will reportedly start at $999 — again, tradition — and go up based on configuration. We’re expecting to see two size options, a 13.5-inch and a 15-inch, each with slightly different specs.
According to Wccftech, the smaller version will be available with either an Intel Core i5-1335U or a Core i7-1355U processor, Intel Iris Xe graphics, and either 8GB or 16GB RAM. The bigger model will feature the Core i7 CPU and the same graphics, as well as up to 32GB of RAM and 1TB of SSD storage. Both come with a PixelSense touchscreen.
Seeing as the October release date clearly didn’t pan out, it’s hard to say when we’ll get the next Surface Laptop 6. Based on the existing release pattern, if it’s not out in October, it won’t be till next year.
Most of us didn’t expect to see the Surface Studio 3 this year, but it would’ve been neat if it had made an appearance. There have been some rumors that imply it’s been in the works for a while now, including talk of an initial release window of 2022. However, that didn’t work out, and the device was reportedly delayed until 2023.
It’s been a long time since Microsoft launched the Surface Studio 2, even though it was one of the best all-in-one PCs during that time. The PC initially launched in October 2018 and was later updated to the Surface Studio 2+ in October 2022.
It’s an expensive product, something akin to Microsoft’s own version of the Mac Pro, and is aimed at creative professionals. That might be why Microsoft chose not to update it just yet, seeing as Apple dominates that scene. It’s still hard to deny that it could use a refresh, given that the 2022 version sports an RTX 3060 GPU and an 11th-gen Intel processor.
Five years have passed since the release of the Surface Studio 2, which makes us wonder whether this product is just delayed or has been scrapped entirely.
The Surface Laptop Studio 2 is alive and well. Equipped with all-new specs, it’s ready to compete against the previous model. It still features several different sets of specs, so it covers a wide range of use cases and will be suitable for more demanding users and those who just want to enjoy the flexibility provided by this convertible.
However, there’s a gaping hole where the entry-level Surface Laptop Studio once was. All of the specs sport an Intel Core i7 processor, resulting in a major price hike. The cheapest model used to cost $1,600, but now, you can’t get your hands on a Surface Laptop Studio 2 without spending at least $2,000.
That model doesn’t even have discrete graphics, so it’s a lot of money to spend on a relatively low-power device — although the upgraded CPU is bound to be miles better than the Surface Laptop Studio 1 ever was.
The decision to walk away from the more affordable Core i5 processor (and lower price tag) makes some sense when you consider the upgrades. The new Surface Laptop Studio 2 is bound to deliver much better performance, it serves up a couple of extra ports (USB-A and microSD), and lastly, it ups the repairability by making more of the components replaceable.
With this decision, Microsoft has firmly labeled the Surface Laptop Studio as a premium device, but seeing as it was never really cheap to begin with, it might be the better choice.
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