Signs point to first Microsoft Surface tablet with LTE

Microsoft may be getting ready to add 4G/LTE to a Surface product. To date, Surface tablets have only come with Wi-Fi, putting them at a disadvantage when competing with rival products like the iPad.

Surface 2. Currently no Surface products have 3G/4G capability.
Surface 2. Currently no Surface products have 3G/4G capability. Microsoft

Microsoft appears to be working toward adding 4G/LTE to its Surface tablet for the first time.

In an FCC filing (via Neowin), a device that appears to be a Surface product (see photo at bottom) has emerged, a possible indication that a new Surface model may be imminent.

The FCC documentation states that the device was tested with WindowsRT8.1, so that could mean it's the Windows RT-based Surface tablet, not the Surface Pro, which runs full-blown Windows 8.1.

And this comports with comments Microsoft made to CNET last year. "Windows RT will...be a strong platform for tablets that come with 3G/4G capability," Microsoft said at the time.

Also, in a reddit AMA in September of last year, Panos Panay, corporate VP of Surface at Microsoft and Surface team members, said that a future Surface product would have LTE.

The Surface 2 packs a quad-core Nvidia Tegra 4 processor, a 10.6-inch 1,920x1,080 display, and weighs 1.5 pounds.

It should be noted that the RT-based Lumia 2520 from Nokia -- whose mobile business Microsoft is set to acquire -- already sports LTE capability.

This doesn't necessarily preclude the Surface Pro 2 -- which is basically an Intel Haswell-based laptop in tablet form -- from getting LTE. We'll have to wait and see.

Microsoft declined to comment.

Image submitted by Microsoft to the FCC.
Image submitted by Microsoft to the FCC. Microsoft
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