Microsoft has released more solid information about its anticipated Surface tablet with Windows 8 Pro, including tech specs, pricing, and availability. The Redmond, Washington-based firm also unveiled a new Surface with Windows RT configuration, as well as a few accessories.
The Surface Windows 8 Pro (aka Surface Pro) will be available for purchase on 9 February in the US and Canada. Since the Surface Pro runs Windows 8 Pro, it will work with your corporate infrastructure, as well as any older apps that you used on Windows XP to 7. The Surface Pro will also support other browsers, not just Internet Explorer as on the Windows RT version.
As anticipated, the Surface Pro will be slightly thicker than the Surface with Windows RT, and will weigh about 910g. The Surface Pro also has a metal "VaporMg" construction, kickstand, and is compatible will all the accessories that the older Surface tablet can use, including all Type and Touch covers.
The Surface Pro comes with an Intel Core i5 processor, 4GB of memory, 802.11 a/b/g/n dual band Wi-Fi, a stylus for pressure-sensitive input, dual 720p HD webcams, a full-sized USB 3.0 port, microSDXC slot, and mini DisplayPort.
The 64GB version will go for $899 (£570), while the 128GB will run $999 (£630).
In addition to the Surface Pro models, Microsoft also announced a 64GB version of the Surface with Windows RT that doesn't come with a Touch Cover. This model will also be available on 9 February for $599 (£380). This configuration saves you $100 (£60) over the 64GB version with black Touch Cover, letting you choose which colour suits you, or lets you skip the cover entirely.
Speaking of Touch Covers, new limited-edition Touch Covers will let you personalise your Surface tablet. Designs include Year of the Snake (Orange), Skulls (Blue), and Flowers (Pink). All three covers work with Surface with Windows RT and Surface Windows 8 Pro, and all three are priced at $129 (£80).
Last, but not least, Microsoft has released a Surface-specific version of the Microsoft Wedge Touch Mouse. This $69.95 (£45) mouse is compact, and has a multi-touch surface that lets you bring up Windows RT and Windows 8 functions like the Charms Bar, while letting you use program functions that require a mouse or cursor (like mouse over text and the like). The sides of the Wedge Touch Mouse match the finish of the VaporMg metal on the Surface tablets.