Microsoft announces new tablet, to compete head-to-head with iPad

As was rumored, Microsoft yesterday announced that it will be offering a new tablet computer called "Surface" sometime this fall. It's about the same thickness and weight as an iPad, and has a 10.6-inch screen compared to the iPad's 9.7. The aspect ratio is 16:9, making it ideal for movies, whereas the iPad's aspect ratio is 4:3. Key features are a built-in kickstand that props up the tablet, and a cover/keyboard that makes it like a laptop or ultrabook. No word on pricing. Two models will be available, and they are essentially, as iMore points out, two different computers. The low-end model will have the ARM processor, which is commonly used to power mobile devices. It will run on the Windows RT software, a version of Windows 8. It will be limited to Metro apps available in the Windows Store. The higher-end model will run the full-blown Windows 8 Pro operating system, and will therefore be able to run regular Windows applications. While Microsoft didn't announce the pricing, they said the low-end device would be priced similar to the iPad, which starts at $499, and the higher-end version will be in the same price range as ultrabooks, the MacBook Air-like laptops that start around $1,000. 

The website for the Surface has a video that gives you a peek at the device.

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You can read more about the Surface in the New York Times and on Yahoo

And speaking of videos, Apple has released a new commercial that shows the many different things one can do on an iPad.

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Jim Karpen holds a Ph.D. in literature and writing, and has a love of gizmos. His doctoral dissertation focused on the revolutionary consequences of digital technologies and anticipated some of the developments taking place in the industry today. Jim has been writing about the Internet and technology since 1994 and has been using Apple's visionary products for decades.