Microsoft this morning quietly launched a more expensive new “Signature” version of its Surface Pro 4 Type Cover which it says is crafted using two-tone gray mélange Alcantara fabric. But the Type Cover is lacking a fingerprint reader, which makes it a lot less enticing for a premium accessory.
“The Signature Type Cover is crafted in a stunning, two-tone gray mélange style of Alcantara—a unique, proprietary material, sourced only in Italy, with aesthetic, sensory, and technical qualities like nothing you’ve ever experienced,” Microsoft explains on the Type Cover’s promo page. “Alcantara material ages beautifully, growing richer and darker over time and is wonderfully soft to touch. The Signature Type Cover was crafted from the latest generation of Surface Pro keyboards, which provides the perfect amount of travel in every keystroke, spaced keys for faster typing, and a larger glass trackpad.”
Yes it does. But in addition to selling its standard Surface Pro 4 Type Cover in a variety of colors for $129.99, Microsoft also sells a higher-end version with a Windows Hello-compatible fingerprint reader, in black, for $159.99.
The Signature Type Cover also costs $159.99, so I guess it’s up to the buyer to determine whether the richness of the material outweighs the day-to-day usefulness of the Type Cover version with a fingerprint reader. Which is of course impossible to know unless you’ve actually picked one up and felt what’s it like.
But let’s let Microsoft continue its latest attempt to be more like Apple, the premium brand it is so desperate to emulate.
“Sourced in Nera Montoro, outside of Milan in Italy, Alcantara is a unique and innovative material used in high-end luxury products like fashion, automotive, and interiors—it brings an unparalleled level of design and sophistication to everything,” the page explains. “This Signature Type Cover features a gorgeous two-tone gray mélange that pairs perfectly with your Surface.”
Microsoft of course also uses the Signature brand for the line of third party PCs it sells through its online and retail stores. In that context, the word “Signature” is used to connote that the PCs have been wiped of PC maker crapware and are now “clean, fast, and protected.” There’s no extra cost to a Signature PC, so there’s no luxury message there, just “better.” So Microsoft’s use of the word Signature for a single Type Cover for Surface Pro 4 is more than a bit off.
Oh, and if you’re not clear that Microsoft is in fact emulating Apple right now, please do watch the video they created for this Type Cover. As soon as Colors & Materials Designer Rachael Bell opens her mouth, you’ll get it.
Tagged with Surface Pro 4