Microsoft is holding a Surface event today, and that means it’s probably time for some new tablet hardware from the Windows-maker. The Surface tablets are a somewhat unusual family of devices, in that they’re made special just for Windows 8, Microsoft’s controversial hybrid OS designed for both touch and traditional desktop computing. The Surface 2 range, unveiled last year, basically upgraded the specs on the old version while keeping everything else pretty much the same – we’ll find out at 11 AM ET what the next generation of Surface brings to the table.
Thanks for watching with us. Good times.
You’ve come a long way, MS.
core i3, core i5, core i7
goes on sale tomorrow.
Oh actually he’s showing something more; using on-board camera to capture image live, and instead of taking a photo when he double-clicks his pen it brings the image right into OneNote for annotation, capture and sharing.
I love love love handwriting notes so that’s actually a really lovely final feature demo.
Removed parallax, removed latency, new pen tip. Write in detail, make art, 256 levels of pressure.
Pen turns on the device immediately. Click it and the screen lights up.
“We believe what can be digital will be digital” – Panay explaining their thought process in translating analog experiences like pen and paper to devices and gadgets.
“There’s rumors of other side-by-side computing” says Panay, which is a reference to rumors Apple is planning this feature for iOS 8.
Side by side computing. Two windows next to each other.
Writing tiny little detailed things on the script.
Now explaining “notes” in scriptwriting. This is like a dictionary event where we discuss the various meanings of words and well-established concepts.
Now looking at Final Draft, screenwriting software. He’s showing how you can add notes to scripts.
Just gave one to the head of NYT’s digital crossword.
They’re giving tablets away like candy.
Now showing the New York Times Crossword app. “Some people don’t want to admit” doing Crosswords. Why would anyone be ashamed of that?
Surface Pro 3’s stylus is “not a stylus,” it’s a pen. But not a pen in the traditional sense, mind you.
Now we’re talking about paper. That’s a lot of explanation of what paper is, which I believe we’re mostly still familiar with.
It’s still got the kickstand thinger though. I remain skeptical.
Little piece on the top of the keyboard cover can magnetically connect to the tablet. “Seals” it to the screen.
There’s no an extra fold that allows it to click in for a more solid, stable connection that he says is the same as any laptop.
The old way is pictured. It works but not really, Panay admits.
No talking about how you can use it on your lap with the Type Cover clicked in.
They got no praise for their original trackpad, hence the changes. This one is 68 percent larger; friction reduced by 78 percent.
Much larger trackpad and more usable.
It’s thinner now. Product is still thinnest overall even with the cover on.
Type cover up next
Panay admits he has rightfully been “super judged” for creating the term “lapability”
This sort of solves Surface’s previous problem of falling over.
Calling this “lapability”
Hinge is “full friction,” so you can bring it to any position you want all the way to 150 degrees.
The virtues of the kickstand are what caused Panay to make this terrible, terrible admission that will scar his other children for life.
I think Panos Panay just admitted to having a favorite child?
Photoshop is now optimized for touch on Surface Pro 3 for easier input. Bigger hit targets on icons and easier touch-based navigation, etc.
Now has Adobe exec up to discuss using Photoshop on the Surface Pro 3, which I’m sure is probably awesome given how good it was on the Surface Pro 2. Adobe customers wanted Photoshop to take better advantage of the touch, pen and screen.
Sent from Surface Pro 3
— Joanna Stern (@JoannaStern) May 20, 2014
Journalist Joanna Stern got the first Surface Pro 3. She’s already Tweeting.
This pitch is heavy on the flowery sales language. It definitely has a shopping channel vibe.
Joanna’s already using her new Surface Pro 3 https://twitter.com/JoannaStern/status/468776191881916416
Running 3D modeling software on stage.
It looks a little bulky but not more than a standard tower.
Surface Pro 3 docking station up next. Because you “need performance at your desk as well”. Allows for 4K output “super hot buzzword people”.
Thing took a good spill, from shoulder height. That’s impressive.
He’s dropping it on stage. Not worried though.
Giving the tablet to Joanna Stern.
Now talking “Designed to fit” and “Machined to fit.” Basically about extremely custom and optically measured components. Sounds hot.
Talking quite a bit about the beauty of the manufacture. This is clearly taken from the Apple playbook.
Still got the perimeter vent found in Surface Pro 2. But now they’ve reinvented the fan to make it 30 percent more efficient than any similar fan today. Invisible and silent.
10% more performance than Surface Pro 2 for those keeping count at home.
“Thinnest Core PC ever made.”
Core i7 in Surface Pro 3
Compares Macbook 13-inch to the Surface. 6% more content on the 12-inch screen vs. 13-inch screen.
MacBook is heavier. Great use of a scale on a stage MS wow.
“Pixel free” is Microsoft’s word for Retina-caliber resolution, which means you can’t discern individual pixels.
Weight to thinness to size ratio. When you pick up this product it feels beautiful he says.
3:2 aspect ratio instead of 16:9 on Surface Pro 2. 2160×1440
Product by definition is faster than Surface Pro 2. Screen is grown vs. Surface 2. Pushing it to 12-inches is critical, he says.
Same performance of Suface 2, but from 10.3 mm to 9.1 mm, plus with evolutionary improvements to specs.
The built-in kickstand has full range instead of two click-in positions, which is nice.
Hot stylus action. That’s actually my favorite part of Surface because I like to draw.
Much thinner than original Surface.
Multi position kickstand
9.1 mm thin
Okay Microsoft but I mean weren’t the other Surfaces about taking the conflict away, too?
Surface Pro 3
Man, these small screens look small. There’s a reason for that. They are.
Today they want to focus on killing the conflict. Of course, not that simple to just do that. Has to have no compromises in terms of performance, form factor, battery life, etc etc.
Sometimes people buy two things; in fact 96 percent of the time they do, he says. Maybe not on that day, but you come back.
“You walk into a store, and you walk up to a salesperson, and you can stand between two very clear tables and you ask a question: What is it I’m supposed to buy?” he’s alluding very heavily to Apple Stores.
Customers always ask “What is it that I’m supposed to buy?”
“What does the sales rep say?”
“The response is so common it’s uncanny. The response is this: what is it that you want to do?”
Reiterating that tablets are for browsing, consumption and “snacking on apps.” Whereas notebooks are designed for actually doing things, editing etc.
96% of people who own a tablet own a laptop, too, Panay says.
Flashback to three years ago, the tablet was supposed to kill the laptop, according to news media. But Panay says if you just look around you’ll notice that people use MacBook Airs still: “What happened?”
Seeing people use device to make change is “awesome,” says Panay.
Surface is used for things that you would use computers for, says this video basically. Like drones, other stuff.
Now showing a video with “real stories” about Surface benefitting people in real-world work.
Surface Pro 2 led some people to “write nice things” which “super helps.”
“Do more… kinda jacks you up” says Panay about the organizational support for Surface.
Panay says “what’s up dude. good to see ya” to Nadella. So cool.
Today brings a major step forward for Surface, and now Panos Panay is up on stage to share more.
“Can we design and build a device that takes the best of the tablet and the laptop and enables any individual to be able to read, and to be able to write; to be able to watch a movie and make a movie… motivation for Surface line.”
Also says they’re not interested in competing with their OEM partners; rather, want to inspire new products and product categories.
Spoiler from Nadella: No refrigerators today.
“We’re not building hardware for hardware’s sake.” Instead, they want to build experiences that bring together all aspects of Microsoft’s mission to build mobile-first products.
Leads us to today’s discussion: “Why hardware?”
Microsoft has partners that help with this goal. Shoutouts to Adobe, AutoDesk, SAP and others “enabling people to do stuff.”
Now talking Microsoft’s “ubiquitous” software products, including Office 365, Skype and OneDrive.
“We want products and technologies that enable people to dream, and get stuff done […] that’s the mission we’re on.”
Today is the “next step on that journey; we want to talk about devices and hardware.” Starts with obsession to power orgs and people to “do more and be more”. This is Microsoft’s unifying theme.
Talking about past events, around enterprise security and data platform; creating a data culture within an organization. Also Build, when they talked about Windows and Azure and their advances on the cloud.
Lights going down. “Good morning everyone.” New CEO on stage. Satya Nadella. Talking about Mobile First/Cloud First initiative. Creating a new platform for ambient intelligent experiences.
Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella welcomes everyone and sets up device talk to come.
john doesn’t know how to take landscape photos sorry everyone
Smaller room than usual. They will be showing something today because ranks of tables are waiting for hardware.
Playing some upbeat EDM and samba for the journalists. Better than obscure rock.
In and ready for Microsoft to ‘Surface’ whatever it’s going to talk about. So hilarious.
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