Microsoft’s first generation Surface Book is finally living up to its potential after several updates. Microsoft’s larger version of the Surface Pro was released in October. It started out earning rave reviews. According to Wired, the Surface Book redefined how PCs are made.
“In fact, it’s hard to name another high-end hybrid laptop that’s quite so enticing. That puts everyone who makes Windows laptops—known as original equipment manufacturers, in trade lingo—in a curious position: What do you do when the partner that supplies your product’s brains releases a superior body?”
Unfortunately, the Surface Book also proved how problematic first-generation products can be. Almost instantly after its release, the complaints started pouring in. InfoWorld quoted one poster on a Microsoft forum that echoed the concern of other users.
“Just got my Surface Book, i7 512GB. Applied all the updates (including the recent firmware). My screen keeps flickering on/off, whether or not the screen is docked. I’ve tried resetting but the issue still persists. It also seems independent of running apps or focused windows. Adjusting the brightness doesn’t resolve the issue.”
Since then, there have been several other issues. The biggest complaints have been about battery life and the inability for users to put the Surface Book in “Sleep” mode without running down the rest of the power. Then, there was the issue of the touchpad, which didn’t register many clicks that were too far from the center. Microsoft has fixed these problems, but it may be a little too late. However, it’s likely that the Surface Book 2 will have a much smoother release and, perhaps, become a huge hit. Here are some predictions for the Surface Book 2:
4K 13.5-inch Screen
Microsoft will not increase the screen size of the device, but they will offer their first 4K laptop. The current 3K resolution is outstanding, but users want something that is even better than outstanding. The only problem is that more pixels take up more power.
Intel 7th Generation Kaby Lake Processor
The new processor will help make up for the battery life lost by increasing the screen resolution. Intel’s new processor will also allow for faster speeds while maintaining decent battery life. Speaking of battery life, there is no way the Surface Book 2 will match that of the MacBook Pro, but it will still be satisfactory.
Screen Detaches Seamlessly
Detaching the screen from the Surface Book keyboard right now is painful and when it works, the detachment makes a sound that resembles fingernails on a chalkboard. And when it is put back on, it doesn’t always attach right and work. However, Microsoft will completely change this and the scrunchy sound will disappear.
Improved Pen Support
The N-Trig pen support on the Surface Book is already good. However, when writing slowly, the pen feels a little “squiggly” and unnatural. One can expect this to improve as N-Trig technology has also been improving. Microsoft could also go back to a Wacom pen, which currently provides smoother writing.
The current Surface Book is way overpriced. The mid-range version, which has a discreet NVIDIA GPU, an Intel Core i7 processor, 8GB of RAM, and a 256GB SSD, costs $2099. Expect this version to sell for at least $200 less. You can also expect the lower-end Intel Core i5 version without the discreet GPU to cost $1299.
Microsoft’s updated Surface Book will likely be released during the fourth quarter of 2016. What do you predict for the Surface Book 2? Let us know in the comments section.
[Photo by Daryl Deino]