Since the release of the Surface Pro 8 and several important upgrades, we’ve been waiting to see what Microsoft’s next hybrid laptop will look like.
Even though the Surface Pro 8 saw its debut just last year, we could be meeting the Surface Pro 9 in just a few months, if Microsoft sticks to its traditional update cycle.
Looking back to the Surface Pro 8, it fixed a couple of nagging flaws in the design and added in new elements, such as Thunderbolt connectivity and a 120Hz refresh rate, as well as being one of the first devices to run Windows 11 out the box.
So, with all that in mind, can the Surface Pro 9 come in as one of the better two-in-one devices from Mircosoft? Keep reading to find out everything we know about the Surface Pro 9.
Microsoft has not confirmed any release dates, though looking back at the previous Surface Pro releases, it’s likely that we will meet the next irritation in October, as that seems to be the company’s regular release cycle.
Again, since Microsoft has been pretty tight-lipped about the next hybrid laptop, we can only look back for an idea of this year’s pricing.
The Surface Pro 8 launched at £999/$999.99, with the Surface Pro 7 costing £909/$899.99. Keep in mind that neither model came with the Type Cover keyboard, which costs another £149.99/$129.99.
Assuming Microsoft sticks to the same formula, we would expect the price to be around the same as last year, if not a little more expensive thanks to general increases in the price of consumer tech affecting the industry as a whole.
Specs and features
Seeing as Mircosoft has not confirmed anything yet, we can only work off of rumours and speculation.
We would expect to see at least the same specs here as the Surface Pro 8, which included support for Thunderbolt 4 and charging via the USB-C ports. Thunderbolt 4 is significant for next-gen devices as it allows users to support up to two 4K displays at once, and can support up to 40Gbps data transfer.
This means with compatible hardware data transfer speeds will be significantly faster, which will be good news for creatives looking to do things like moving 4K video footage between devices.
The Pro 8 had a 13-inch display, which will likely stay the same, with a 120Hz adaptive refresh rate. The adaptive refresh rate will ensure the laptop works smoothly during heavy use, without wasting battery when the workload is less intensive.
The Microsoft Surface YouTube channel also recently uploaded a video on the new ‘Right to Repair’ rules. While it focuses on the Surface Laptop SE, we could see this rule being applied to future Surface products.
AMD has also officially unveiled its next generation of laptop processors, the Ryzen 6000 Series, which was announced at CES 2022. AMD laptop chips have been getting more mainstream every year. Last year we reviewed devices from big names including Dell, Asus and Lenovo with AMD options, so it wouldn’t be entirely beyond the realm of reason to see Microsoft will try and include the latest tech on its new laptops.
It would also make sense to see versions running Intel’s Alder Lake, as the 12th-gen processors will give a boost to the hybrid’s performance over its predecessor, based on our experience reviewing other devices running the chips.
Intel is also developing new Intel Arc Alchemist GPUs for laptops, with the release date marked for 30 March, meaning that we could see the inclusion of the company’s latest graphics cards, though as of yet, nothing has been confirmed about the specs of the next Surface Pro.
Since there is little concrete information on the Surface Pro 9, we can’t say anything definitive about the laptop, though we will be sure to update this article when Microsoft starts confirming details like the pricing, release date and specs.
While we don’t know a lot about the next Surface Pro 9, it looks like it could be a promising convertible tablet-come-laptop. Provided it at least matches the Pro 8 specs, we should see a high 120Hz adaptive refresh rate, which will come in handy during creative tasks.
I would hope to see the upgrade to OLED or even Mini-LED, since LCD panels are not as bright or adapt at colour accuracy, which will be important for anyone hoping to use this as a professional creative device. Having the keyboard and stylus come bundled with the Pro 9 will make it a lot more palatable, as the extra £200+ is a hard pill to swallow, especially since they are essential items that are needed to make the most out of the device.
But if it comes packed with a 12th-gen Intel CPU and can manage to keep its predecessor’s reliable battery life, this could be a great addition to the Surface Pro lineup.