Microsoft’s 2016 Surface line-up saw the addition of the new Surface Book i7 w/ Performance Base and the Surface Studio. Both are formidable devices in their own right but can never be considered as a Surface Pro replacement. Also, the current Surface Pro 4 was launched in October 2015, which makes the Pro 5 due already, with tech analyst predicting it’s likely to be around the summer of 2017 for the new Pro 5 to eventually see the light of day.
Of course, the exact launch schedule might vary a bit, with some claiming it is going to be around spring 2017. There are reasons to back such claims given that the Windows 10 Creators Update that is being considered as the next big thing for the Windows platform will only be released during spring next year.
No doubt Microsoft will be keen to hold back on launching a product as crucial as the Surface Pro 5 till then, more so when it is being launched after a year’s gap. The SP4 should be reason enough for Microsoft to attempt to launch only a matured product given the battery drain issues that the hybrid suffered during the initial stages.
Another reason that many believe might have pushed back the launch of the Microsoft Surface Pro 5 is the delayed availability of Intel’s 7th-gen Core i chips (Kaby Lake CPUs). While those have since reached manufacturers, it is quite logical that Microsoft would be waiting for an update as crucial as the Creator Update before launching the Pro 5. Even the new Apple MacBook Pro with an OLED display bar features Intel’s Skylake processors.
A new-found arrangement with Qualcomm has also led many to believe the successor of Surface Pro 4, or at least a version of it, might come powered by a Snapdragon 835 chip. It was just last week that Terry Myerson, executive vice president for Windows and Devices Group had hyped about the combined benefits of the entire Windows ecosystem on an ARM platform that provides for all-time connectivity besides being extremely power efficient as well.
Maybe, with compatibility with Qualcomm chips, Microsoft will attempt to launch a Pro 5 that will be more geared towards the tablet market. This, while the Surface Book can suffice the needs of those who are looking for a two-in-one sort of a device that can be positioned as a laptop-killer as well.
Among the other Surface Pro 5 rumours doing the rounds is that the Surface Pen that happens to be a key element to aid in productivity with the Pro series might contain a rechargeable battery this time. Further, the battery would charge automatically when it is attached magnetically to the tablet. As of now, the Surface Pen gets its juice from an AAAA alkaline battery.
The display might also see a bump in pixel count so that it might end up being of 4k resolution this time. However, the high costs associated with the eye-popping res might also force Microsoft to keep it restricted to only the top-end versions. There already are rumours of the top-of-the-line Pro 5 to have 16 gigs of memory along with 512 GB of flash storage. Those coupled with the 4K display will no doubt be likeable but only for those who can splurge.
Further, the Pro 5 might also see the integration of the USB-C port, which if true will be the first on any Surface device. The latest Bluetooth and Wi-Fi standard too might be incorporated along with perhaps, an enhanced camera too.
Overall, the delay in the launch of the Surface Pro 5 seems to have whetted our appetite for the device all the more. In the end, the delay could well be worth it too.