What does the new Surface Pro 3 model mean for the Surface Pro 4?

Discussion in 'Members News Depot' started by Spider, Jun 30, 2015.

  1. Spider

    Spider Super Moderator Staff Member

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    By Will Shanklin - June 29, 2015

    [​IMG]
    Today a new storage/CPU tier for the Surface Pro 3 popped up in the Microsoft Store

    Image Gallery (2 images)
    It's possible we'll see a Surface Pro 4 launch alongside the Windows 10 release next month, but Microsoft hasn't finished yet with the Surface Pro 3. Today the tech giant released a new tier of the popular 2-in-1.

    The new model is the third cheapest SP3 option, coming in at US$1,299 for the tablet and pen only (its keyboard cover, as always, will set you back an extra $130). The new tier has an Intel Core i7 CPU, with 8 GB of RAM and 128 GB of storage.

    All three of those specs were previously available in different configurations, but this is the first time they've come together in one model. It shares that $1,299 price point with an i5 model that also has 8 GB of RAM, but double the storage, at 256 GB.

    So in that price tier, you now have the choice between a better processor and less storage, or vice versa.

    [​IMG]

    If there is indeed a Surface Pro 4 waiting around the corner, then this is a strange move. Microsoft isn't going to add a new tier for a product that's going to be obsolete in a month. So our take is that this means the SP4 either isn't coming next month after all, or the SP3 will stick around as a slightly cheaper option after the Pro 4 launch (as was the case with older models).

    Microsoft has reportedly been working closely with OEM partners, like on HP's Spectre x360, so it isn't completely out of the question that the Surface is set to be phased out. But with the lineup seeing a surge in popularity (and sales) during the Surface Pro 3's run, it's hard to see Microsoft ditching the Surface now. There's also the fact that the Surface is still one of the few 2-in-1s that heavily encourages pen input – something Microsoft is doubling down on with Windows 10's handwriting recognition and its recent purchase of N-Trig's pen technology.

    In other words, we think the Surface's place is likely safe, whether we see a new Surface Pro next month or not. In the meantime, at least last year's model feels like a brand new device when it jumps from Windows 8.1 to Windows 10.
     
  2. GreyFox7

    GreyFox7 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    It probably means the SP4 will hit just a little later than originally thought/planned but that WOULD be a GOOD thing IF they are taking the extra time to iron out any wrinkles before release.

    What could they do to reduce or eliminate problems??? IMO Windows Hardware Detection is a great thing which allows vendors incredible flexibility BUT sometimes it goes wrong and you end up with problems... there should be an optimization for Surfaces... Ahah, it's a Surface Model X DONE, we know what's in it and forgo messing it up with counterintelligence of hdw detection gone wrong. :) This in an area where Apple has an advantage... limited configuration makes things a whole lot simpler.
     
  3. jnjroach

    jnjroach Administrator Staff Member

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    It means they are clearing i7 SoCs getting ready for the next wave of devices, this is just like when the 4300U SP2's came out.... same rhetoric....the Surface Devices are alive and well....and the one thing the Surface Team is great at is keeping people out of the loop (even their own marketing teams).

    The Surface is the newest Billion Dollar business for MS...
     
  4. Tsurugaya

    Tsurugaya Active Member

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    But isn't the problem that a 1 billion dollar business is peanuts for Microsoft?
     
  5. malberttoo

    malberttoo Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Nice to hear. I plan to keep giving them my business... :D:D:D
     
  6. leeshor

    leeshor Well-Known Member

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    They're doing the best to make it less so.
     
  7. Tsurugaya

    Tsurugaya Active Member

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    From peanuts to walnuts?
     
  8. GreyFox7

    GreyFox7 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    I'm not sure it's the same situation, Intel discontinued the 4200U and the 4300U is on the Stable Image Platform Program and the 4200U doesn't support vPro or Trusted Execution Technology which can be important to business customers.

    I do however agree that using stocks of i7s is a likely reason and they should sell even better, while supplies last, when the assumed price reduction kicks in at SP4 launch time.
     
  9. jnjroach

    jnjroach Administrator Staff Member

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    Trust me the Surface line for the feasible future is on solid ground and I'm sure just like the SP3 announcement when it came out they will surprise us.....or at least you ;)

    I should have said near 4 billion - over the last 4 quarters the Surface Business did:

    ~992 Million - Q1
    ~1.2 Billion - Q2
    ~1 Billion - Q3
    ~800 Million - Q4 (Est)
     
  10. GreyFox7

    GreyFox7 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    I'll be surprised and disappointed if it doesn't have Skylake inside which would be another reason to reduce inventory of the Haswells. I might be the exception but I'm usually surprised at what they left out not what they included but I regularly scour for new stuff. They did surprise me with micro USB charging on S3 wasn't expecting that one... :) nor was I expecting S3 :) but was also surprised at the apparent segment void until it showed up.

    The SP4 being much anticipated... surprises will be a little harder... especially if they hold 100% to the accessory compatibility commitment but to me that doesn't rule out the possibility of other options in addition to a compatible one.

    I'm half expecting a new S3 model also, not based on any leaked or inside information, to me it just makes good sense but that doesn't mean they will do it. I like good choices, there are lots of people with different preferences, I say embrace that and let them choose.

    I assume Apple will prbly go quad core with their SoC this year and iOS Nine is said to up the multitasking capabilities and probably enterprise supportability, though it's likely to be lipstick on a pigish. The A9X will have performance advantage over Atom Z8700 but not Core series but they will market the holy crap out of it so competition will be heating up for enterprise customers.
     
  11. jnjroach

    jnjroach Administrator Staff Member

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  12. leeshor

    leeshor Well-Known Member

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    So long as you aren't whistling Dixie. ;);)
     
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