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Everything Microsoft Just Announced: Copilot Plus PCs, Surface Pro and Laptop Running on Qualcomm

Copilot to the nth degree. There's a lot of AI looking over your shoulder in your future.

Lori Grunin Senior Editor / Advice
I've been reviewing hardware and software, devising testing methodology and handed out buying advice for what seems like forever; I'm currently absorbed by computers and gaming hardware, but previously spent many years concentrating on cameras. I've also volunteered with a cat rescue for over 15 years doing adoptions, designing marketing materials, managing volunteers and, of course, photographing cats.
Expertise Photography | PCs and laptops | Gaming and gaming accessories
Lori Grunin
3 min read

Copilot Plus PCs are the new AI PCs, and Microsoft is launching its first Surface models, running on the Qualcomm Snapdragon X series. Microsoft always delivers devices when it's showing off some flagship or buzzy Windows and partner updates, so on Monday ahead of its Build conference we got variant models of the Surface Laptop 6 and Surface Pro running the new Snapdragon X mobile processors.

AI Atlas art badge tag

With its 45 trillion operations per second NPU, or neural processing unit -- you are going to get so tired of seeing the rather vague 45 TOPS claims, but I may be projecting -- the X is ready to power all your... Copilot Plus PCs. They're defined as any CPU capable of more than 40 TOPS, which means it includes Intel and AMD-based systems, too.

In order to bear the branding, Microsoft requires an "approved" chip, which has an NPU with 40 TOPS or more, 16GB or more RAM (because it's got to store those models somewhere) and at least 256GB of storage (probably because the entry-level Surface Pro starts there). On the one hand, those are fairly low-level requirements, but we'll see how low the prices can get with them; the third-party laptops announced start at $1,100.

Watch this: Everything Announced at Microsoft's Surface Copilot Plus PC Event

Copilot Plus Surface specs


Microsoft Surface Pro (11th edition)Microsoft Surface Pro with OLED (11th edition)Microsoft Surface Laptop 13.8 (7th edition)Microsoft Surface Laptop 15 (7th edition)
Starting price $1,000$1,500$1,100$1,300
CPU Snapdragon X PlusSnapdragon X EliteSnapdragon X Elite or Snapdragon X Plus Snapdragon X Elite
Display 13-inch, 2,880x1,920 pixels, 120Hz, 100% sRGB, touch, 600 nits13-inch, 2,880x1,920 pixels, 120Hz, OLED, touch, 600 nits (SDR), 900 nits (HDR)13.8-inch, 2,304x1,536 pixels, 120Hz, HDR,  IPS, 100% sRGB, 600 nits16-inch, 2,496x1,664 pixels, 120Hz, HDR,  IPS, 100% sRGB, 600 nits
Memory 16GB LPDDR5x16GB or 32GB LPDDR5x 16GB, 32GB or 64GB LPDDR5x16GB, 32GB or 64GB LPDDR5x
Graphics Integrated Adreno 3.8 TFLOPSIntegrated Adreno 3.8 TFLOPSIntegrated Adreno 3.8 TFLOPSIntegrated Adreno 3.8 TFLOPS
NPU Hexagon (up to 45 TOPS)Hexagon (up to 45 TOPS)Hexagon (up to 45 TOPS)Hexagon (up to 45 TOPS)
Webcam 1440p plus IR1440p plus IR1080p plus IR1080p plus IR
Storage 256GB or 512GB SSD512GB or 1TB SSD256GB, 512GB or 1TB SSD256GB, 512GB or 1TB SSD; micro SD card reader
Ports 2x USB-C 4, Surface Connect, Surface Pro keyboard2x USB-C 4, Surface Connect, Surface Pro keyboard2x USB-C 4, 1x USB-A 3.1 (5Gbps), combo audio, Surface Connect2x USB-C 4, 1x USB-A 3.1 (5Gbps), combo audio, Surface Connect
Networking Wi-Fi 7, Bluetooth 5.4Wi-Fi 7, Bluetooth 5.4Wi-Fi 7, Bluetooth 5.4Wi-Fi 7, Bluetooth 5.4
Battery 46Wh51WhRated up to 20 hours of local video, 13 hours web browsingRated up to 22 hours local video, up to 15 hours web browsing
Operating System Windows 11 HomeWindows 11 HomeWindows 11 HomeWindows 11 Home
Weight 2 pounds (895 g)2 pounds (895 g)3 pounds (1.3 kg)3.7 pounds (1.7 kg)
Dimensions 11.3 x 8.2 x 0.4 inches; 287 x 209 x 9.3 mm11.3 x 8.2 x 0.4 inches; 287 x 209 x 9.3 mm11.9 x 8.7 x 0.7 inches; 301 x 220 x 18 mm13.0 x 9.4 x 0.7 inches; 329 x 239 x 18 mm
Availability June 2024June 2024June 2024June 2024

The big claims for the Surfaces are that they're a lot faster than before -- 86% for the Surface Laptop over the Surface Laptop 5 and 90% faster for the Surface Pro over the Surface Pro 9 -- with double the battery life (22 hours playing local video). And the Surface Pro has been updated with an HDR OLED display (the Laptop has a new 500-nit model) and improved cameras -- 4K for the rear. It can use the same updated accessories announced with the October models

Microsoft is my Copilot

Copilot will soon have OpenAI's GPT-4o with voice and computer vision, and updated features like editing photos without opening the apps. It will be front and center on your taskbar. 

A new Recall feature tracks everything you do and see on your computer for a few days so that you can find anything more easily with natural language queries. For example, the company showed searching for a specific item and Recall pulling up a Discord chat and reading the link. It also serves up suggestions based on what it sees on screen, like Minecraft gaming tips. For gaming, it can redirect the low-power stuff, like recommendations, to the CPU so it doesn't tax the GPU. And eventually a lot of this will work its way into your Xbox. It sounds like having a parent peering over your shoulder when you're at the PC.

The Recall intelligence works in all applications: You can pause, stop and delete captured content as well as exclude specific sites from capture. Under the hood, there's a new Copilot runtime API, with more than 40 models.

Other features include Live Captions, Cocreator (which seems to pick up where Designer disappeared), for generating images progressively -- you describe it and sketch it, then Cocreator refines it -- image restyling, background removal for both photo and video and so on. And finally, the company has updated its Studio Effects with a few more features, including creative filters and Portrait Light. They will only be available on Copilot Plus PCs. 

MIcrosoft called out some third-party applications for their use of the NPU: DaVinci Resolve (video editing), Cephable (accessibility), Luminar Neo (image editing), WhatsApp (messaging) and CapCut (video and image editing). Here's a full list of all eight AI-driven applications Microsoft's touting (PDF).

Editors' note: CNET used an AI engine to help create several dozen stories, which are labeled accordingly. The note you're reading is attached to articles that deal substantively with the topic of AI but are created entirely by our expert editors and writers. For more, see our AI policy.

Watch this: Everything Announced at Microsoft Copilot and Surface Event