Hands-on with Microsoft Surface Duo 2 and Surface Laptop Studio

The 2021 Surface lineup boasts significant improvements to fully utilize the new Windows 11 update

Surface Duo 2
Surface Duo 2

The anticipated Windows 11 update is just around the corner and while the refreshed OS will arrive on existing devices, Microsoft has announced a new suite of Surface products specifically built for this major update. Considered as its largest update to the Surface series, the newly-announced devices include the Surface Laptop Studio, Surface Pro 8, Surface Go 3, Surface Pro X, and the Surface Duo 2.

Surface Laptop Studio

Surface Laptop Studio
Surface Laptop Studio

Leading the pack is the new Surface Laptop Studio which the company touts as its most powerful yet. Featuring a new, ultra-durable Dynamic Woven Hinge, the Surface Laptop Studio offers three modes.

Laptop mode is your typical setup but pull the 14.4-inch touchscreen display forward and it transforms into Stage mode. This provides the ideal angle for gaming, streaming, or presenting to clients, as suggested by the company. In stage mode, the keyboard is covered giving the screen all the attention.

Surface Laptop Studio
Surface Laptop Studio

Lift and drop the screen and you enter Studio mode. This makes the laptop function as a tablet where users can operate the device through its touchscreen display.

The Surface Laptop Studio supports the new Surface Slim Pen 2 as well. Internally, it’s powered by an 11th Gen Intel Core H35 processor with NVIDIA GeForce RTX handling its graphics.

Surface Laptop Studio 2
Surface Laptop Studio 2

The Surface Laptop Studio is already available for pre-order in select markets with $1599.99 as its starting price. The Surface Slim Pen 2 is separately sold for $129.99.

Surface Pro 8

Hands-on with Microsoft Surface Duo 2 and Surface Laptop Studio 14

The new Surface Pro 8 refreshes the company’s popular 2-in-1 and offers improved performance and internals. Powered by 11th Gen Intel Core processors, it provides double the speed of its predecessor.

It houses a 13-inch 120Hz PixelSense edge-to-edge touchscreen with Dolby Vision and adaptive color technology. Connections are handled by two Thunderbolt 4 ports and battery can last up to 16 hours.

Cameras include a 5-megapixel front-facing shooter and for its rear, a 10-megapixel 4K one. With Dolby Atmos sound, the Surface Pro 8 offers an immersive experience and dual studio mics will keep your voice clear and audible during voice or video calls.

The Surface Pro 8 also supports the new Slim Pen 2 and works together with the Surface Pro Signature Keyboard for storage and charging capabilities.

The Surface Pro 8 starts at $1099.99 and can is available for pre-order in select markets.

Surface Pro X and Surface Go 3

Surface Pro X
Surface Pro X

For more portable options, the much recent Surface Pro X now has a new Wi-Fi-only model. The thin and light tablet offers Windows 11, like its siblings, and also features 64-bit emulation that opens it up to more apps like Microsoft Teams, Photoshop, or Lightroom.

Surface Go 3
Surface Go 3

The Surface Go 3, which is the most portable of the bunch, has gotten a new Intel Core i3 processor leading to a 60% increase in its speed. It’s also supported with an all-day battery and built-in Microsoft security.

It houses a 10.5-inch touch display, studio microphones, and 1080p cameras.

The Surface Pro X and the Surface Go 3 are also ready for pre-order and are priced at $899.99 and $399.99 respectively. The LTE variants of the Surface Go 3 will come at a later date.

Surface Duo 2

Hands-on with Microsoft Surface Duo 2 and Surface Laptop Studio 15

Last but not least is the company’s pocketable device, the Surface Duo 2. Introduced last year, the follow-up features a large 8.3-inch PixelSense Fusion display and a flagship Snapdragon 888 5G processor.

Acting more like a mini-computer than a phone, the Surface Duo 2 is integrated with Microsoft 365 and Microsoft Teams for seamless transitioning. It also boasts a new triple-lens camera system, stereo audio, NFC for contactless payments, and more.

Hands-on with Microsoft Surface Duo 2 and Surface Laptop Studio 16

The Surface Duo 2’s dual-screen, like its predecessor, can run two android apps simultaneously on either screen. Some apps have also been updated, like Asphalt 9, to utilize the device’s dual-screen.

The Surface Duo 2 is offered in two colors — Glacier and the new Obsidian color, and starts at $1499.99. Pre-order is already available in select markets as well.

Hands-on with Microsoft Surface Duo 2 and Surface Laptop Studio 17

Alongside these devices, Microsoft also introduced the Surface Slim Pen 2 and a new portfolio of accessories.

The Surface Slim Pen 2 offers zero pressure force and ultra-low latency for improved control and accuracy. The tip is sharper for increased precision in handling finer details and also features a haptic motor for a natural feel when using it.