As we approach the end of 2016, it’s safe to say that Microsoft has had a pretty great year, especially in terms of hardware. While devices like the Surface Studio and a refresh of the Surface Book have been launched to high acclaim, the Surface Pro line has been dormant — but that could change early next year.
The Surface Pro 4 launched in October 2015, meaning it’s been more than a year since the flagship product of the enormously successful range of hybrids was given an upgrade. Now, there’s reason to believe that a follow-up could arrive in the first quarter of 2017, according to a report from Digitimes.
Taiwanese manufacturing firm Pegatron Technology will apparently handle production of the device. There are rumblings that Quanta Computer might also be brought on board to assist with the process, although it’s being reported that no final decision has been made at this time.
Not much information about the device itself is currently available, but there is an indication that the Surface Pro 5 will feature an Ultra HD display. In addition, it’s expected that the hardware will be accompanied by an enhanced magnetic stylus with wireless charging capabilities.
An early 2017 launch for the system would make sense, given that the Creators Update for Windows 10 is rumored to land in March. Microsoft has already showcased several new features set to be introduced as part of the update — like Paint 3D and expanded support for mixed reality experiences — and brand new hardware would definitely be able to cater to the necessary technical requirements much better than the aging Surface Pro 4.
Microsoft has yet to confirm these reports, so an early 2017 release date for the Surface Pro 5 remains a rumor at this point in time.