The Surface Book i7 is Microsoft’s latest hybrid laptop, bringing improved graphics and up to 16 hours of battery life.

Pre-orders for the Surface Book i7 started last month and shipping began this week. As a direct hit toward Apple, Microsoft is also offering to buy MacBooks from customers choosing to buy a Surface Pro or Surface Book. The offer will last until November 23. With its base price of $3,299.99, the Surface Book i7 aims toward becoming Microsoft’s professional-tier graphics computer. Reviewers have labeled it as “incredibly fast,” achieving at least twice the input response speed of the original Surface Book.

Microsoft’s Surface Book i7
Microsoft’s Surface Book i7. Image credit: Microsoft.

Microsoft goes for graphic performance

The i7 is the second version of the Surface Book, Microsoft’s take on hybrid laptops that can detach their keyboard and turn into tablets. The Surface Book i7 boasts a 13.5-inch screen with an optimized display for using Microsoft pen.

The Surface Book i7 can ship with or without its keyboard base, also known as Performance Base. But seeing that the Performance Base allows the i7 to improve its graphic potential, it is advisable to always buy the peripheral. The Surface Book i7 joins its Performance Base thanks to a bizarre but cool-looking hinge that some users have not wholly embraced.

Even when processor speed was upgraded, it appears that Microsoft chose to rely on graphic performance rather than CPU speed. This may come as an indicator of Microsoft’s recent direction in offering new types of computing; in this case, the Surface Book i7 is aimed at artists and designers so they can fully take advantage of its graphic output abilities.

Users can choose the 8GB or the 16GB RAM version, both of which are equipped with Windows 10 Pro, an Office 30-day trial, Windows Hello face sign-in, warranty and a massive 3000×2000 pixel screen. The storage options offered by Microsoft are 128GB, 256GB, 512GB, and 1TB. The hybrid laptop also has a 5MP frontal camera with 1080p HD video capacity and an 8MP rear camera.

The Surface Book i7 features a Nvidia GeForce GTX 965M chip and 2GB of GDDR5 RAM. Although the response time of this gargantuan of a PC is quick, Microsoft acknowledged that it can heat up considerably, so the Surface Book i7 was provided with an additional fan and larger air vents. The i7 weighs 3.68 pounds including the Performance Base. The only color available is silver.

Reportedly, Apple is facing scrutiny because the new MacBook Pro laptops cannot perform well enough for people that work with graphic design, video editing, and photography. Apple’s Mac share dropped its revenue in the last quarter, which was taken as an incentive by Microsoft to introduce a new alternative for graphic and video design professionals. But Microsoft still has to reach the level of user-incentive that Macs create, although analysts believe that Apple is in the tougher spot in this round.

“Microsoft could abandon the Surface tomorrow and there would be no huge hit on its revenue. But if Apple literally walked away from the Mac, it would be a huge change, culturally as well as in revenue,” stated Jan Dawson from Jackdaw Research.

Microsoft’s Surface Book i7 is available for purchase on Amazon.

Source: Microsoft