Microsoft's big screen 2-in-1 notebooks are more powerful than the Surface Pro 4's and will be available in India sometime in March 2018
Microsoft’s flagship 2-in-1 notebook, Surface Book 2, will be available to users in India by March 2018. Released first in the US in November 2017, the Surface Book 2 comes in 13-inch and 15-inch screen sizes. Prices start at approximately Rs95,823 in India.
While Microsoft is launching the Surface Book 2 in India, it has another device in its line-up called the Surface Laptop . This is what Microsoft is pitching against Apple’s New Macbook Pro notebooks, but it is not being launched in India just yet.
The new Surface Book 2 adds to the existing line-up which already has the Surface Pro 4, with prices starting at Rs66,490.
Though India prices of the Surface Book 2 have not been announced yet, in the US market, the starting variant which offers a 13.5-inch screen, Intel HD graphics, Intel’s 7th gen Core i5 processor and 8GB RAM costs $1,499 (approximately Rs95,823). It’s higher-spec variant, which runs on Intel’s 8th gen Core i7 processor, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 (2GB) graphics and 16GB RAM, is priced at $1,999 (approximately Rs1,27,786). The 15-inch screen variant, which runs in Intel’s 8th gen Core i7 processor and NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 (6GB) graphics, is available at $2,499 (approximately Rs1,59,748).
In terms of design, there is hardly any difference between the 13- and 15-inch versions except for the size. Both have a similar magnesium exterior and a detachable screen. Microsoft claims the notebooks can muster up to 17 hours of backup on video playback and run Windows 10 out of the box.
The smaller variant has a 13.5-inch display with resolution of 3,000 x 2,000p and pixel density of 267ppi. It is 23mm thick with the lid down and weighs up to 1.6kg. Remove the keyboard and it becomes a lot lighter, weighing just 719g.
The bigger variant offers a 15.6-inch screen with resolution of 3240x2160p and pixel density of 260ppi. It is bigger in size and weighs 1.9kg, but is only 23mm thick. Without the keyboard, it weighs 817g. The 15-inch Surface Book 2 isn’t the first 2-in-1 notebook which can be used for running high-end games.
The Acer Nitro Spin and the recently announced Dell XPS 15 are some of the other convertibles running Windows 10 with discreet graphics. The Nitro Spin runs on Intel’s 8th gen Core i7 with 8GB RAM and has NVIDIA’S 1050 (4GB) graphics, and is available in India at Rs84,990. The Dell XPS 15 runs on Intel’s new 8th Gen Core i7 processor, which combines with AMD’s Radeon Vega M graphics. Intel claims it is 40% smaller than existing chipsets with discreet graphics and consumes less power too. This is why the XPS 15 looks slim (16mm) and compact (1.9kg), despite the 15.6-inch screen. It will be available in the US from April 2018 at $1,299 (approximately Rs82,674).
The 15-inch Surface Book 2 supports Xbox Wireless and works with all new Xbox controllers.
The new Surface Book 2 will widen the options for users looking for a powerful notebook, which can handle games and can be used as a standalone tablet when required. Most high-end 2-in-1convertibles come with 13-inch screens, do not have room for discreet graphics and have a flexible hinge which rotates back up to 360 degrees, but keeps the display and keyboard together all the time.