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The new Surface Laptop and Surface Pro are finally living up to their potential

Luke Larsen / Digital Trends

Copilot+ represents a new era for Windows laptops, and it’s a fresh reimagining for Surface as well. You’ll notice that the generational number in the name is gone with this new era — one that comes with a new design, higher performance, and AI features.

Both the new Surface Laptop and Surface Pro come exclusively with up to a Qualcomm Snapdragon X Elite, which brings massive leaps in performance, battery life, and AI capabilities over the previous generation of Surface devices.

Microsoft took the opportunity to tighten up the design of both devices too. The Surface Laptop gets a large, haptic feedback touchpad, thinner bezels across the top and sides, and new color options (for a total of four), plus it supports up to three 4K external monitors. It features two USB4 ports, one USB-A port, a Surface Connect magnetic charging port, and a headphone jack. The new Surface Laptop still comes with a 1080p webcam.

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There are still two sizes available — 13.8-inch and 15-inch — with minimal differences between the two. Most notably, the larger model starts with the more powerful Snapdragon X Elite chip and a microSD card slot. The touchpads are the same size on both devices, leaving lots of extra unused space around the palm rests on the 15-inch model.

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The Surface Pro gets an even bigger upgrade this time around. It now has the option for an OLED display, capable of up to 800 nits of brightness in HDR. The standard LED model, meanwhile, tops out at 600 nits in SDR, which is incredibly bright. The device also now comes with an ultrawide quad-HD Surface Studio Camera, as well as a 4K rear-facing camera. Like the Surface Laptop, the Surface Pro can also support up to three 4K external monitors, using the two USB4 ports and the Surface Connect port.

One of the most interesting features is the new Surface Pro Flex keyboard, which can be used either connected to the screen or disconnected. By integrating a battery and Bluetooth receiver, you can use the keyboard detached. It also automatically charges while connected. In theory, this opens up some new ways of interacting with the device, such as using the keyboard and Surface Pen in tandem or on your lap during a flight.

There’s also a new keyboard option with larger, brighter characters to be inclusive of those who might benefit from it. Only the Black and Blue keyboard color options have these features, unfortunately.

The detachable keyboard also features a 14% larger haptic feedback touchpad, slightly wider and taller than before. Thanks to the use of haptics, the touchpad feels smoother and isn’t as loud to click as it was in the past.

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On the performance front, Microsoft claims that it’s 90% faster than the Surface Pro 9. Battery life is off the charts too, with a claimed 22 hours of local video playback battery life, which is longer than the MacBook Air and a huge improvement over the previous generation.

Microsoft also spent some time talking about the new AI capabilities that can take advantage of the on-device AI processing provided by the 45 Tera Operations Per Second (TOPS) neural processing unit (NPU). One included Cocreator, a diffusion-based image generation feature that takes hand-drawn photos and turns them into more realistic AI images. A new feature in the popular video-editing app Capcut was also shown off. It allows the presenter to quickly mask five dancers from a video and replace the background, all running on the NPU.

Both devices start at $999, coming with 16GB of RAM and 256GB of storage. The 13.8-inch Surface Laptop and Surface Pro both will start with the Snapdragon X Plus (with options to upgrade to the X Elite), while the 15-inch Surface Laptop comes with the Snapdragon X Elite standard. As always, you’ll have to pay extra for the detachable keyboard on the Surface Pro, but Microsoft says previous versions going back to the Surface Pro 8 keyboard are compatible.

Like the rest of the Copilot+ PCs, the new Surface Laptop and Surface Pro will be available for preorder today and will be shipping on June 18.

This is a developing story, and we’ll continue to update as more information becomes available.

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Luke Larsen
Luke Larsen is the Senior editor of computing, managing all content covering laptops, monitors, PC hardware, Macs, and more.
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