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HolidayBuyer's Guide

Presenting the Microsoft Surface

Rear view

Two models

On display

In profile

USB

A nifty stand

A nifty stand

A nifty stand

A cover and a keyboard

All in a row

Flip out

Or get a trackpad

Giving it a go

How it works

A look inside

On the side

And around back

LOS ANGELES--Microsoft debuted a new tablet today, or rather a tablet family based on its upcoming Windows 8 operating system. We get a behind-the-scenes tour at some of the tech that went into making the device, which arrives later this year.

Caption by / Photo by Josh Lowensohn/CNET
On the Surface's side there's a Windows logo and a seam that goes across its full width. What's the seam for? Keep on clicking.
Caption by / Photo by Josh Lowensohn/CNET
The Surface will come in two versions: one is powered by Windows RT and the other running on Windows 8 Pro.
Caption by / Photo by Josh Lowensohn/CNET
The Surface has 10.6-inch ClearType HD Display (or a "Full HD" on the Pro model) with a 16:9 aspect ratio and a 1,920x1,080-pixel resolution.
Caption by / Photo by Josh Lowensohn/CNET
The Surface is just 9.3mm thick and weighs 676 grams/23.85 ounces.
Caption by / Photo by Josh Lowensohn/CNET
The Surface has a USB 2.0 port on one side.
Caption by / Photo by Seth Rosenblatt/CNET
The Surface also include a nifty stand; that's the seam you saw earlier. It's a convenient option when watching movies.
Caption by / Photo by Josh Lowensohn/CNET
You also can use the stand when typing on the keyboard using the innovative cover.
Caption by / Photo by Josh Lowensohn/CNET
Here's another shot of how the stand flips down from the rear side.
Caption by / Photo by Josh Lowensohn/CNET
Indeed, one feature that's particularly intriguing is the magnetically attached, 3mm-thich Touch Cover that folds down and functions as a full touch-screen keyboard. They come in a choice of colors.
Caption by / Photo by Josh Lowensohn/CNET
No matter which color you choose, the Surface is pretty eye-catching.
Caption by / Photo by Seth Rosenblatt/CNET
The cover will flip down to expose the keyboard.
Caption by / Photo by Josh Lowensohn/CNET
The thicker 5-mm Type Cover has a built-in trackpad. The keyboards power down when they're folded back against the tablet, thanks to a built-in accelerometer.
Caption by / Photo by Seth Rosenblatt/CNET
Press conference attendees were eager to try the keyboards.
Caption by / Photo by Josh Lowensohn/CNET
Inside the keyboard is a thin mat with the contact points for the keys.
Caption by / Photo by Josh Lowensohn/CNET
Here you can see the Surface's frame.
Caption by / Photo by Josh Lowensohn/CNET
A close-up look at the side of the frame shows the holes for the various ports.
Caption by / Photo by Josh Lowensohn/CNET
Microsoft also showed us the Surface's rear cover.
Caption by / Photo by Josh Lowensohn/CNET
Updated:
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