Surface Pro 3 Aims to Replace Laptops: 12-inch Screen, 9.1mm thin

SurfacePro3

Microsoft wants to replace your laptop with the new Surface Pro 3, which sports a large 12-inch display yet is only 9.1 mm thin. The Surface Pro 3 is also light given its bigger canvas, weighing 1.8 pounds. Other upgrades include a much improved Type Cover with a more lap-friendly typing experience and a pen that lets you start taking notes with a click. The Surface Pro 3 starts at $799.

The display itself is quite sharp, hitting 2160 x 1440 pixels. That gives you 6 percent more content than the 13-inch MacBook Air in a smaller and lighter design. The kickstand and hinge on the Surface Pro 3 have also been improved, which includes a new canvas mode for pen or lap use. The hinge can fold 150 degrees.

MORE: Top 8 Windows 8.1 Tablet-Laptop Hybrids

Microsoft says that its has reinvented the fan on the Surface, making it 30 percent more efficient. This allows to keep the system quiet and cool even though it has a blazing Core i7 CPU under the hood. Microsoft also squeezed in a bigger battery.

Surface Pro 3 keyboard

The new Type Cover for the Surface Pro 3 is even thinner, and Microsoft says that it has worked to improve the trackpad. It’s 68 percent larger than before and suffers from much less friction. You can now click in the cover to the screen, which helps stabilize the device when typing in your lap.

You’ll find a USB 3 port on the Surface Pro 3 and support for 4K external displays. Microsoft is also touting pen support, which can be used for taking notes or making fine touches in Photoshop. Better palm rejection will certainly help. 

Surface Pro 3 hinge

The pen that comes with the Surface is weighty and is designed to feel like a real pen. We really like that you get start writing notes just by clicking the top of the pen, which saves time. This action fires up OneNote. When you click your pen again, your notes go to the cloud, though we’re not sure why that wouldn’t happen automatically. This nifty pen click action can also be used to capture webpages and then start annotating them.

The Surface Pro 3′s pen can be used not just for taking notes but also for apps like The New York Times crossword. The app attempts to combine pen and touch in a natural way. You can cross out clues as you solve the puzzle, and it automatically translates your scribbles to text.

Microsoft also showed off the Final Draft app, which shows off the lack of latency in the pen experience. You can write your thoughts, and your notes sync to the cloud in OneDrive, allowing the other viewer to see your scribbles and edits.

The Surface Pro 3 starts at $799 for the Core i3 version with 64GB of storage and 4GB of RAM. A Core i5 version with 128GB of storage and 4GB of RAM costs $999,  a Core i5 with 256GB of storage and 8GB of RAM costs $1,299, a Core i7 with 256GB of storage and 8GB of RAM will run you $1,549 and a Core i7 with 512GB of storage and 8GB of RAM tops out the group at $1,949.

Microsoft also sells a variety of accessories for the Surface Pro 3. The Surface Pro Type Cover will cost $129.99 while the docking station will go for $199.99 and extra pens will run you $49.99 each.

AUTHOR BIO
Mark Spoonauer
Mark Spoonauer
Responsible for the editorial vision for Laptopmag.com, Mark Spoonauer has been Editor in Chief of LAPTOP since 2003 and has covered technology for nearly 15 years. Mark speaks at key tech industry events and makes regular media appearances on CNBC, Fox and CNN. Mark was previously reviews editor at Mobile Computing, and his work has appeared in Wired, Popular Science and Inc.
Mark Spoonauer on
Twitter Google+
LEAVE A REPLY
Name*
Email* (will not be published)
Website
*Indicates required field
Comments*
Submit Comments

FIND A REVIEW
Laptops
All Product Types Accessories Cars Digital Camcorders Digital Cameras eReaders GPS Laptops MP3 & Video Players Projectors Smartphones Software Storage Tablets / MIDs VoIP Wi-Fi
All Subcategories
All Subcategories All-Purpose Budget Business Desktop Replacement Gaming Multimedia Netbook Nettop Rugged Student Tablet PCs Ultraportable
Brand
Acer Alienware Apple Archos ASUS Averatec BenQ CTL Corp. Dell Digital Storm eMachines Emtec Everex Fujitsu GammaTech Gateway General Dynamics Getac Gigabyte Hercules HP HTC iBuyPower Intel Lenovo MSI Nokia Nvidia OCZ OLPC OQO Origin Panasonic Sager Samsung Sony Sylvania Systemax TabletKiosk Toshiba Verizon Viewsonic Viliv VooDoo Workhorse PC ZT Systems
Minimum Rating
Any Rating 4.5 Stars 4.0 Stars 3.5 Stars 3.0 Stars
Screen Size
10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 20 4 5 6 7 8 9
Resolution
1024x576 1024x600 1024x768 1200X800 1280 x 720 1280x1024 1280x768 1280x800 1366x678 1366x768 1440x1050 1440x900 1600x768 1600x900 1680x1050 1680x945 1920x1080 1920x1200 800x400 800x480
Weight Range
10.1 - 12.0 pounds 12.1 - 14.0 pounds 14.1 - 16.0 pounds 2 lbs 2 pounds and under 2+ lbs 2.1 - 4.0 pounds 4.1 - 6.0 pounds 6.1 - 8.0 pounds 8.1 - 10.0 pounds Over 16 pounds Under 2 pounds
more options
SUBSCRIBE