Hands on: Microsoft Surface Book 2 review – TechRadar

Microsoft’s first attempt at the 2-in-1 laptop was no doubt impressive. But, it was also a tad divisive, releasing with some components that weren’t of the cutting edge nature you’d expect of a flagship Microsoft device, and employing a design that didn’t jive with everyone because of a certain gap.

This time, Microsoft has addressed most of the main concerns lobbed at the original while digging its feet into the sand further on others – namely, the performance issues and the design, respectively.

This year’s Surface Book 2 is more powerful than ever, naturally, but more importantly it’s now current with laptop hardware trends, thanks to 8th-generation Intel Core i processors and Nvidia GTX 10 Series graphics.

That said, the Fulcrum hinge design – replete with ‘the gap’ – is here to stay. However, the device has become thinner and lighter than before, an impressive feat and a possible consolation for the gap issue. Plus, Microsoft has introduced an even-more-powerful 15-inch model this year, meeting Apple’s professional-focused laptops head-on.

Price and availability

It should come as no surprise that the Surface Book 2 is mighty expensive, starting at $1,499 (about £1,130, AU$1,900) for the 13.5-inch model and at $2,499 (about £1,885, AU$3,185) for the new 15-inch variety, the latter of which we’ve spent the most time with. That being said, Microsoft has also smartly priced both versions of the device to go practically toe-to-toe with Apple’s leading 13- and 15-inch MacBook Pro laptops.

Considering both models handily beat out either version of the MacBook Pro, at least in terms of spec sheets, that’s bound to make things interesting when Surface Book 2 becomes available for purchase on November 16, just in time for Black Friday and the Christmas shopping season.

For that price, the 13.5-inch Surface Book 2 starts with an Intel Core i5 processor paired with Intel HD Graphics 620, 8GB of RAM and 256GB of PCIe solid-state storage (SSD). Of course, it can be upgraded to a Core i7 chip with up to 16GB of RAM and as much as 1TB of SSD space, not to mention an Nvidia GTX 1050 graphics chip. Prices on these upgrades are currently unclear.

If you trade up to the 15-incher, that model starts with the same Core i7 chip as the souped-up 13.5-inch model, but with 16GB of RAM and a 256GB SSD. With this model you can upgrade the storage to up to 1TB and opt for a more-powerful Nvidia GTX 1060 GPU.

So, yes, both Surface Book 2 models are ready for not only Microsoft’s upcoming Windows Mixed Reality headsets, but also VR through Oculus Rift and HTC Vive.


Those of you waiting for a complete overhaul of the Surface Book design – namely those who were left nonplussed by the gap created by the first model’s fulcrum hinge – can stop holding your breath. The Surface Book 2 doesn’t do much, if anything, to change the core design.

Microsoft’s iconic, all-brushed aluminum design remains, and it’s lighter and thinner than ever, at 3.38 pounds (1,533g) and 0.51–0.90 inches (13–23mm) when put together. (The Intel Core i7 13.5-inch model is a bit heftier and thicker.) Meanwhile the 15-inch model comes in at 4.2 pounds (1,905g) and 0.57–0.90 inches (15–23mm).

The tablet disconnects from the base in the same way as before, a must because of the more powerful graphics located within the keyboard base, while the tablet or Clipboard offers no hardwired connectivity options, save for a Surface Connect charging port.

That said, the degree to which Microsoft has made its second Surface Book thinner is impressive, employing the thinnest optical stack it has ever devised while managing a fanless design housing Intel’s first-ever quad-core mobile processors. You’re getting more power than before in a somehow more portable package.

To house that additional power, Microsoft seems to have made the slightly larger keyboard base employed in the Surface Book i7 model of last year the default frame for both Surface Book 2 models. To wit, the keyboard deck plateaus a bit toward its fulcrum hinge end, likely to make room for the thermals and battery needed to power the Nvidia GPUs inside.

No matter – you’ll barely notice the additional height, as it’s easily hidden by the gap that was apparently so divisive in the first place. (This editor in particular didn’t pay much mind to it then, and he doesn’t now.)

The 13.5-inch model employs the same PixelSense display resolution as the previous year’s design (3,000 x 2,000), and the same 3:2 aspect ratio. Of course, the 15-inch model requires a few more pixels to maintain a similar pixels-per-inch (ppi) figure, so the resolution bumps up to 3,240 x 2,160 for a 260 ppi to the smaller model’s 267 ppi. Both those resolutions are more dense than the 13- and-15-inch MacBook Pros’ 227 and 220 ppi, respectively. The 1,600:1 contrast ratio is the icing on the cake, especially for color-centric creators and consumers.

And, because Microsoft has flattened the optical stack of the display to its thinnest yet, inking on the Clipboard screen is faster and more pen-and-paper-like than ever. The trail of digital ink following the Surface Pen is practically unnoticeable, with tilt detection now supported as well for even finer control and variety.

Our opinions of the tracking and typing experience on the Surface Book 2 haven’t really changed since last year, either. The glass-coated Precision Trackpad is just as plush and responsive as ever, and the white-backlit keyboard offers respectable travel and feedback.

However, one piece of the Surface Book 2 design that leaves it a bit behind the crowd is the lack of Thunderbolt 3 connectivity. While the laptop offers two USB 3.1 ports, and a USB Type-C port with USB 3.1 data speeds as well as a full-size SDXC card slot, USB-C Thunderbolt 3 would have future-proofed the laptop that much further with a more widely supported standard than Surface Connect.


Pure power is always a tough thing to gauge with only minutes to test out a device at a preview event, but we’re already excited for what the Surface Book 2 can accomplish. Having the very latest Intel and Nvidia silicon onboard already seems to be working out well.

For one, the inking experience on this device is the best it’s ever been on a Microsoft Surface product, working at the speed of our hands during our time with it. That’s thanks in part to a new timing controller (or TCON) chip beneath the display, but also to quad-core processing.

Plus, the GTX 1060 within the 15-inch model has been proven in countless gaming laptops to be more than enough for most 1080p gaming experiences. This, oddly enough, makes the Surface Book 2 a decent mobile PC gaming rig on top of everything else it offers. To wit, the 15-inch model includes Microsoft’s Xbox Wireless communication protocol for easier Xbox One controller and headset pairing.

As for longevity, Microsoft naturally has lofty claims for the battery life of its second round of Surface Books. According to the firm, both versions of this device can last for up to 17 hours in laptop configuration and as long as five hours when separated in tablet mode.

Considering that the original Surface Book lasted just 3 hours and 58 minutes for us in the PCMark 8 battery test, don’t blame us for our skepticism of these claims. We’ll just have to wait until we can subject the Surface Book 2 to our full testing before saying any more on the matter.

Early verdict

It’s obvious that Microsoft has improved on its first Surface Book in almost every way with these new models. Since the design hasn’t changed much, the most notable of these improvements is bringing the devices up to speed with the latest, and some of the most powerful, Intel and Nvidia hardware.

On paper, the Surface Book is looking to legitimately challenge Apple’s stake in the creative professional scene with two devices that best the 2017 MacBook Pro models in not just screen sharpness, but in pure performance. Plus, while the MacBook Pro has a Touch Bar, it can’t become a tablet.

We’re initially quite impressed with the Surface Book 2. While it may be mightily expensive, the price is on a par with Microsoft’s main competition. Stay tuned for our full review ahead of its November 16 release to see whether Surface Book 2 is truly worthy of your lap – creative pro or not.

Xbox One vai ganhar mouse e teclado oficiais no final de outubro – Globo.com

Hori Tac One Pro, o primeiro par de mouse e teclado oficiais para Xbox One, chega em 30 de outubro (Foto: Divulgação)Hori Tac One Pro, o primeiro par de mouse e teclado oficiais para Xbox One, chega em 30 de outubro (Foto: Divulgação)

Hori Tac One Pro, o primeiro par de mouse e teclado oficiais para Xbox One, chega em 30 de outubro (Foto: Divulgação)

A linha entre Xbox One e PCs segue cada vez mais tênue. O console vai ganhar seu primeiro par oficial de mouse e teclado, licenciado pela Microsoft, em 30 de outubro. Chamado de Tac Pro One, os acessórios são fabricados pela Hori, marca conhecida por dispositivos “gamer” de desempenho, e vão custar US$ 150 nos Estados Unidos.

O Tac Pro One é desenhado para games de tiro em 1ª pessoa, ou “FPS”, que geralmente oferecem maior dificuldade de precisão quando jogados nos consoles.

Especificações técnicas

O teclado do Tac Pro One tem teclas mecânicas, enquanto o mouse traz sensibilidade de 3.200 DPI. De acordo com a Hori, é possível personalizar até 20 comandos do teclado e a aceleração do mouse, seus botões, entre outras opções. Tudo pode ser salvo em vários perfis usando um aplicativo.

Se você já tiver um mouse para games, é possível usá-lo (desde que tenha saída USB) no lugar daquele que vem com o Tac Pro One.

Hori Tac One Pro pode ser inteiramente programado (Foto: Divulgação)Hori Tac One Pro pode ser inteiramente programado (Foto: Divulgação)

Hori Tac One Pro pode ser inteiramente programado (Foto: Divulgação)

A discussão sobre mouse e teclado em consoles é antiga e ressurgiu recentemente com sinalizações positivas por parte da Microsoft. A polêmica gira em torno do equilíbrio entre quem usa os acessórios de PC e quem joga com os controles tradicionais, que são naturalmente menos precisos e têm menos botões.

Nos últimos anos, a Hori também lançou um par de acessórios similar para o PlayStation 4.

Microsoft’s Loftis Feels Great About First Party Output, Says Sea of Thieves Will Be A Scene Changer – Wccftech

Microsoft has been criticized by Xbox fans for the relative lack of first party exclusives and this topic was evidently going to be brought up again now that they’re about to ship the Xbox One X console (November 7th, $499).

With less than a month to go on the launch date, GameInformer had a chance to interview Shannon Loftis, general manager of Microsoft’s Global Games Publishing, who reckons that there’s a great amount of first-party output and productivity from Microsoft’s internal studios.

My role is to work with partner studios. We refer to it as first-party development: Age of Empires is obviously our property and it’s a first-party effort, and Crackdown is a first-party development effort.

I can only speak from my perspective. My charter has actually expanded significantly in the last several years, so I am pursuing multiple markets, multiple platforms, with the Age of Empires and Rise of Nations work, and the sky’s the limit really… it’s sort of intentional for me to expand our partnership relationships, so I feel great about the output and productivity of our internal studios.

I mean, Minecraft is in a continuous innovation cycle, and Sea of Thieves I think is going to be a real scene-changer. When it comes to the general public across the board, Turn 10 I think is probably one of the best studios in the entire world, just in terms of continuously creating and recreating games that define the racing genre. I think we have a great amount of first-party output.

Loftis also pointed out that Rare’s Sea of Thieves, due to launch in early 2018 for Windows 10 PC and Xbox One, could be a real “scene-changer”.

The shared world pirate themed game will feature cross-play; in fact, Rare recently confirmed they balanced gunplay with that in mind.

Xbox One X release news: Microsoft won’t be doing THIS to beat PS5 and PS4 Pro – Express.co.uk

New Xbox One X games have been announced by MicrosoftMICROSOFT

New Xbox One X games have been announced by Microsoft

UPDATE ONE: In a new update today, Microsoft have revealed their plans to offer more enhanced games for the Xbox One X.

It has now been confirmed that a series of Halo titles will be given an upgrade patch for the upcoming console release.

This will include Halo Wars 2 and Halo: The Master Chief Collection, on top of the already announced Halo 5: Guardians launch.

This was confirmed during a recent Halo Waypoint, in which 343 revealed they wanted to: “bring [Halo: MCC] forward and modernize many of the game’s systems to take advantage of Xbox platform advancements since its original launch.” 

Halo Wars 2 will see some “visual upgrades” as part of its patch, while the MCC will also get a new system in which players can test out new builds of the game moving forward.

It seems Microsoft have a little bit of unfinished business to wrap up with the Master Chief Collection, following its rocky initial launch on the Xbox One in 2014.

More is expected to be announced in the coming weeks and ahead of the Xbox One X release date in November.

The Xbox One X lifespan discussed by MicrosoftMICROSOFT

The Xbox One X lifespan discussed by Microsoft

ORIGINAL: With the Xbox One X release date set for November, all eyes will be on Microsoft for launch day.

There will be plenty of games to try out on the new console, with pre orders suggesting that interest is high.

But when it comes to the future, Microsoft have ruled out certain tactics to take on Sony’s PS4 Pro and future PS5 console.

This generation has seen the PlayStation dominate and Microsoft forced to play catch-up.

And while it may have helped to have had the Wii U as a weak rival, the Nintendo Switch is off to a roaring start.

So in the years to come, Microsoft will be hoping to come out ahead against the likes of the PS5.

But one way they will not be trying to reclaim the top spot will be through yearly upgrades.

While the Xbox One X and PS4 Pro have confirmed that mid-generation refreshes can prove popular, there appears to be a limit to Microsoft’s ambitions.

Albert Penello, the senior director who leads marketing for Xbox consoles globally, revealed to MCV UK that Backwards Compatibility bonuses will only be going so far.

“I’m certainly not an advocate of ‘we’re going to do a new console every year’,” Penello explained.

“But consumers are more used to this idea that they can buy devices with different performance levels, when a new generation of hardware comes out, their old stuff still works.”

“We care a lot about compatibility, we have a huge effort around compatibility, and that’s not just backwards compatibility.

“I don’t know what the future holds, but I do know that we care a lot about compatibility and in this day and age people have shifted to caring more about their community and their apps, than caring about the piece of hardware that they’re on, and we have just moved with that.

“Some might say that Windows is the ultimate compatibility platform, Windows is backward compatible all the way back to the very beginning in many cases.”

With these comments in mind, it appears Microsoft’s next console to follow the Xbox One X will be part of a new generation that will be facing off against the PS5 and others.

It also means that we probably won’t see something like the Xbox Two arriving until at least 2019, perhaps even later.

Some analysts believe that Sony won’t look to launch a PS5 console until 2020, filling the gap by slashing the costs of the PS4 Pro and making that their main unit, moving forward.

Penello does believe that the Xbox One X will help to sell more 4K TV, which has already seen a smooth rise in sales in recent years.

“We have momentum on our side, which helps,” Penello told MCV.

“The majority of TVs sold this year will be 4K TVs, there are all kind of analysts reports, and within the next few years everything will be 4K. So it’s coming, in terms of retail of displays.”

Buy Microsoft Office and get a chance to win prizes like an Xbox One S, a Surface Book or $10000 – MSPoweruser

You can now buy Microsoft and get chances to win incredible prizes like an Xbox One S, Surface Book, or $10,000. Both Office 365 subscription and Office standalone products are available as part of the sweepstakes. You can order Office products from Microsoft Store using the below links,

Office 365: Premium Office apps and services.

Office 2016: The classic product that is best for individuals with basic needs. Includes desktop versions.

How to enter:

  1. Buy a participating Microsoft Office product.
  2. Email your receipt to [email protected]
  3. Complete your registration at officewow.com/microsoft and earn additional chances to win incredible prizes like an Xbox One S, Surface Book, or $10,000.

You can learn more about Office products here.

Xbox One X lansmanı ve Microsoft’un oyun sektörü ile ilgili planları – Digital Age