Things Microsoft Just Announced At Its Surface Event

All The Things Microsoft Announced At Its Surface Event

There is a new Surface Pro 9, Surface Laptop 5, and a surprise Apple integration with iCloud photos on Windows and Apple Music on Xbox.

Significant tech events keep happening this fall. Microsoft held an event on Wednesday to show off the latest updates to its Surface line of PC products, just like Apple, Google, and Meta did. Since the first Surface tablet came out in 2012, the line has grown to include the Surface Pro tablet, the Surface Laptop, the Surface Studio desktop, and more.

The company released three major new products: the Surface Pro 9, the Surface Laptop 5, and the Surface Studio 2 Plus all-in-one. It also announced new tools for creativity and productivity, like an AI-powered graphic design app. It strengthened its relationship with Apple by adding iCloud photos to Windows 11 and Apple Music to Xbox. Some new accessories, like an audio dock and a presentation controller for Microsoft Teams, can improve hybrid meetings. Read on to find out more.

Microsoft Surface Pro 9 And Pro 9 With 5G

The Surface Pro has been around for a decade, and for most of that time, it has had the same look and feel, with only minor changes to how it looks, works, and has features. The Surface Pro 9 doesn’t break that chain. Instead, it adds new CPU options and colors to what I’d call a mature product.

The most significant change is that the Surface Pro with Intel chips and the Surface Pro X with ARM chips are one product line. The Pro X was a spinoff that looked and felt like the regular Surface Pro, but it had a custom chip called the SQ that Microsoft and Qualcomm made to work with broadband.

Chips with the designations SQ 1 and SQ 2 were utilized in the initial two iterations of the Surface Pro X. Now, the ARM-based version of the new Surface Pro 9 uses a chip dubbed — you guessed it — SQ 3, and it’s imposing. Although the Surface Pro X line was designed with always-on connectivity in mind from the beginning, it continued to function on 4G networks. Support for 5G is included in the newest edition of the Surface Pro, which is called Surface Pro 9 with 5G.

The Surface Pro Intel variant is only available with Wi-Fi connectivity. However, it comes equipped with new CPUs from Intel’s 12th generation for improved overall performance. Platinum, graphite, sapphire, and woodland are now part of the spectrum of hues that can be selected from among those offered. There is also a particular limited-edition blue floral pattern available, which can be applied to either the tablet or the cover for the keyboard. The design can be seen in the image to the right.

The New Surface Pro 5 From Microsoft

The new Surface Laptop 5 is similar to the Surface Laptop 4 in many ways. The touchscreen laptops come in 13.5-inch and 15-inch sizes, and their processors have been upgraded from 11th-generation to 12th-generation Intel Core chips. This should at least give them better performance and a little longer battery life. (This time, there is no AMD choice.) It also has faster DDR5 memory and Thunderbolt 4 in its USB-C port.

The rest of the package, like the 720p webcam, is almost identical to the 2021 models. That’s a shame since most competing laptops now have 1080p cameras, making video calls more precise and detailed.

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Microsoft Surface Studio 2 Plus

The “Plus” in Surface Studio 2 Plus means it has newer CPUs, GPUs, ports, and wireless. Since its last update was in 2018, it seems like it has returned from the dead. The standout feature of the Studio line has always been the display, which in the Surface Studio 2 became a pressure-sensitive, color-accurate, 28-inch monitor with a hinge that makes it easy to position for design work.

Microsoft Just Announced At Its Surface Event

But Microsoft stopped selling that older model at least a year ago, leaving it inactive with seventh-generation Intel CPUs and Nvidia GTX 10-series graphics. So, the insides had to be updated to bring it back to life. It now has an 11th-generation CPU, an RTX 3060 GPU, newer ports and wireless.

iCloud Photos On Windows 11 Apple Music On Xbox

People who use Windows or Xbox and have Apple devices or services might like a couple of new perks. Soon, Apple’s iCloud photos network will work with the updated Photos app from Microsoft, which is currently being tested. And earlier on Wednesday, Apple launched an Xbox app that lets you use Apple Music.

In the past, the two companies have made deals that let Apple TV videos play on the Xbox and let Windows sync its contacts and calendar with the Xbox.

New Windows Tools Including A Microsoft Designer App That Uses Ai

The company also announced a new app called Microsoft Designer. This app lets people who pay for the Microsoft 365 service use artificial intelligence to make unique images based on what they tell the computer to do. The new feature uses the same artificial intelligence (AI) technology used in Dall-E 2, whose pictures have gone viral on the Internet since it came out earlier this year.

Microsoft also improved other tools for its Windows operating system. For example, it added AI to Image Creator on Bing, added Clipchamp to the Office 365 suite, launched a website for creators called Microsoft Create, and added a new shopping feature to the Edge browser.

Microsoft Presenter Plus And Microsoft Audio Dock

Microsoft has two hybrid meeting accessories. Presenter Plus is the first Microsoft Teams-certified presentation controller. The Bluetooth remote advances slide, mutes/unmutes, and points to the screen, but it also has a Teams button to raise or drop your hand in a meeting.

Microsoft Audio Dock is a USB-C dock/speakerphone. The speaker boasts a 15-watt woofer, 5-watt tweeters (more power than your laptop’s speakers), and two forward-facing, noise-reducing mics. It contains built-in volume, play/pause, mute controls, and mute status lights. On the back are two USB-C connectors, an HDMI 2.0 out, and a USB-A 3.2 port.

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