Microsoft announced that customers can now purchase its new Surface Laptop and Surface Pro PCs. And Surface Studio is now available in new markets as well.
“Today, Surface is celebrating the largest launch in its history with Surface Laptop and the new Surface Pro now available in 25 markets around the world, as well as expanded global availability for Surface Studio,” Microsoft corporate vice president Panos Panay writes. “When I look at the journey we have been on since we launched the first Surface nearly five years ago, I am amazed at how far the product family has come.”
Surface Laptop is a controversial device: It runs Windows 10 S, the stripped-down version of Windows 10 that cannot install or use traditional desktop applications. It features an Alcantara keyboard decking that will be difficult or impossible to clean over time. And like all Surface devices, it eschews modern connectivity options like USB-C and Thunderbolt 3.
But the Surface Laptop is also incredibly desirable, with a gorgeous 13.5-inch 3:2 PixelSense display and four available colors (in some configurations): Platinum, Burgundy, Cobalt Blue, and Graphite Gold.
I’ve argued that Surface Laptop is, in many ways, Microsoft’s most important Surface release ever: It proves my contention that Windows 10 S is not just about Chrome OS or the education market and is, in fact, also targeted at professionals who want (most of) the benefits of Windows 10 without (most of) the downsides.
A couple of new tidbits about the Surface Laptop:
- Microsoft says it will make all four Surface Laptop colors available in 17 new markets “over the coming months”: Australia, Austria, Canada, China, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, HK, Ireland, Japan, New Zealand, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, and the UK.
- The first Office 2016 apps are available in preview form today in the Windows Store.
- During the Office 2016 preview period (through October 15), Surface Laptop comes with an offer for a free one-year subscription to Office 365 Personal. Yes, you can use this to extend an existing Office 365 Home subscription by 9 months.
The new Surface Pro, meanwhile, is a somewhat known quantity, as it is the fifth iteration of Microsoft’s volume Surface device, a 2-in-1 tablet form factor that can be used—is, in fact, most often used—as a laptop of sorts, thanks to an optional Type Cover. But as you’ll see in my detailed first impressions article later today, the new Surface Pro delights in the details, and it offers the most elegant and refined Surface Pro experience yet.
More on that soon, but remember that Surface Pro with LTE is coming “later this year.”
Finally, Microsoft also revealed that it is now shipping Surface Studio, its amazing all-in-one (AIO) PC in several additional markets: Austria, China, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Japan, Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland, and the UK.
“There has never been a better time to buy a Surface,” Mr. Panay says. “Starting today at all physical Microsoft Stores in the US or Canada, when you trade in an old device, including an Apple MacBook or iPad, you will receive up to $850 off most Surface devices, including the new Surface Pro and Surface Laptop.” That offer lasts through July 31, 2017.