Microsoft Haswell-based Surface Pro 2 leaks emerge

Microsoft's new Surface Pro 2 is expected, unsurprisingly, to be a Core i5 "Haswell"-based update to the current Surface Pro, according to new reports.

Mary Jo Foley
Mary Jo Foley has covered the tech industry for 30 years for a variety of publications, including ZDNet, eWeek and Baseline. She is the author of Microsoft 2.0: How Microsoft plans to stay relevant in the post-Gates era (John Wiley & Sons, 2008). She also is the cohost of the "Windows Weekly" podcast on the TWiT network.
Mary Jo Foley
2 min read

Microsoft executives earlier this summer said that the company is planning to release "updates" to its Surface line of tablets sometime during its fiscal 2014, ending June 30, 2014.

That's all the company has said publicly. Privately, reports are beginning to leak tidbits from unnamed sources about what the new Surfaces will look like.

NeoWin.net posted on September 4 that the Intel-based Surface 2 will run Intel's next-generation Core i5 "Haswell" processor. Neowin also said RAM will be doubled from 4GB to 8GB and that the new model will include a "refined" kickstand.

Paul Thurrott on the Windows SuperSite corroborated the Core i5 Haswell information. Thurrott also said that the battery life of the Surface Pro 2 will go from the current 4 to 5 hours to up to 7 hours.

Thurrott said the Surface Pro 2 will offer a choice of RAM, possibly 4GB and 8GB options. He added that the new Surface Pro will look identical to the current Surface Pro -- which makes sense, given Microsoft is expected to allow the same keyboard/covers to work with the new Surface models. And as far as the "refined" kickstand goes, Thurrott claims the new kickstand will offer two different positions, instead of being locked into one on the current Surface Pros.

Neither Neowin nor Thurrott are reporting anything new on the pricing. But both are predicting it won't change much from current Surface Pro pricing, meaning it could start around $799 if Microsoft matches the recently reduced Surface Pro price.

Surface Pro 2 is expected to come with Windows 8.1 pre-installed. Like the first-generation Surface, it will offer users the ability to run existing desktop apps, as well as new Metro-Style/Windows Store apps.

I asked Microsoft reps if they'd comment on any of the new Surface leaks and, unsurprisingly, a spokesperson declined.

The new version of the ARM-based Surface will be called Surface 2, rather than Surface RT 2, Thurrott has reported. That updated tablet is expected to run an updated Nvidia Tegra processor, according to reports. Additional specs for the Surface 2 haven't leaked (yet).

Many Microsoft watchers are expecting Microsoft to launch its new Surfaces on or around the time Windows 8.1 launches, which is October 18. Microsoft hasn't said this will be the case, however.

Update: A few readers asked Thurrott on Twitter if the Surface Pro 2 would include LTE/wireless support. He said his sources are indicating it will not.

This story originally appeared as "Microsoft's Haswell-based Surface Pro 2: The leaks begin" on ZDNet.