then,SurfaceRT starts at $499. After failing to gain the favor of consumers and product reviewers, Microsoft turned to the more expensive Surface Pro product line. Surface Pro has been welcomed by the market and is likely to drive the demand for the professional version of the iPad. Apple introduced iPadPro in 2015.
The new Surface tablet will be equipped with a 10-inch screen that is the same size as the standard version of the iPad, but smaller than the 12-inch screen equipped with the Surface Pro notebook. The new Microsoft tablet costs about $400 and will use a rounded screen design similar to the iPad, unlike the square-angle screen design used in current models. It will be equipped with a USB-C interface for the first time on the Surface Series Tablet, supporting the new charging and synchronization standards used in some of the latest smartphones.
The new tablet is expected to be about 20% lighter than the high-end model, but the battery life is about 4 hours shorter. According to Microsoft, the current Surface Pro's battery life is 13.5 hours. Informed sources said that Intel will supply main processors and graphics chips for Microsoft's new tablet.
Informed sources said that Microsoft plans to introduce a variety of models, including 64GB, 128GB storage capacity version and support LTE network models. The new tablet will continue to be equipped to support typing and viewingvideoBrackets. Like other Microsoft devices, it will run Windows 10 Pro.
The last time Microsoft released a low-cost device was the Surface 3 launched in 2015, which starts at $499 and is equipped with a 10.8-inch screen. Microsoft will stop producing Surface 3 at the end of 2016.
The new tablet product line is part of Microsoft’s growing ecosystem of hardware products. In addition to the tablet, Microsoft also introduced the Surface notebook, a Surface Book with a removable screen, and a Surface Studio desktop.
In the past four quarters, Apple sold 44 million iPads, and revenues were close to 20 billion US dollars. In contrast, Microsoft’s entire Surface hardware business generated revenue of US$4.4 billion over the same period.
A Microsoft spokesperson declined to comment.