Sign in with
Sign up | Sign in

Rumor: Microsoft Working on Surface Mini Tablet

By - Source: WinSuperSite | B 13 comments

Microsoft will likely release an 8 inch Surface RT 2 tablet after the larger models are released.

Paul Thurrott's SuperSite for Windows has put together a list of Windows 8.1 and Windows RT 8.1 tablets that are slated to arrive sometime during this half of 2013. Several of these have already been verified like the cool Transformer Book Trio from Asus, but the list also reveals that Microsoft is working on three next-generation tablets, one of which is a "mini" that appears to compete directly with Google, Amazon and Apple.

Thurrott admits that he has little information to go on regarding the Surface "mini" tablet, but the device will reportedly arrive a bit later than the Surface Pro 2 and Surface RT 2 tablets. The device will reportedly sport an 8 inch screen and a Qualcomm processor, meaning Microsoft will ultimately release two branded Windows RT 8.1 tablets and one Windows 8.1 model.

As for the Surface RT 2 tablet, this 10.6 inch device will supposedly be based on Nvidia's Tegra 4 chip (he says "next-gen" Tegra) and sport a Full HD ClearType screen. The tablet will also have a new white color, VaporMg casing, front and rear-facing cameras, an integrated two-position kickstand, Bluetooth 4.0, presumably Wireless AC connectivity, a full-sized USB 3.0 port, a microSD card slot for up to 64 GB of expanded storage, HDMI output and the included Office Home & Student 2013 RT suite.

He also noted that Microsoft has removed the "RT" branding. This is likely to shake off all the negativity surrounding this ARM-based build of Windows 8 that's built up since the platform's debut last year (the $900M write off didn't help either). Microsoft blamed customer confusion for the lack of sales, but removing the RT label could cause even more chaos for customers who don't know the difference between an ARM-based chip and an x86-based chip. With the "RT" label, there's at least some hope that consumers understand that their desktop programs won't install and execute on ARM-based architecture.

As for the Surface Pro 2, the tablet will obviously be a bit meatier, cramming a fourth-generation Intel Core i5 processor behind a 10.6 inch ClearType Full HD screen. This model will supposedly have front and rear-facing cameras (720p LifeCam was mentioned), a digital Pro Pen, Bluetooth 4.0, Wireless AC connectivity, various RAM options and the same ports found on the RT tablet. This model will supposedly measure 0.53 inches thick, whereas the RT model will be around 0.37 inches thin. The Power Cover featuring a keyboard and external battery will supposedly launch sometime after the two tablets.

Naturally, everything seen here regarding the Microsoft-branded tablets is unofficial chatter. The Redmond company actually won't come clean with its next-generation Surface plans until September 23. That makes sense given Windows 8.1 and Windows RT 8.1 won't officially launch until October 18, a date Microsoft will likely make for its 10 inch Surface 2 tablets as well.

Ask a Category Expert

Create a new thread in the News comments forum about this subject

Example: Notebook, Android, SSD hard drive

This thread is closed for comments
  • 0 Hide
    w8gaming , September 12, 2013 9:13 PM
    Microsoft best not to build too many 8" and the "RT" model. With current situation in the app store, I do not think too many will sell just yet. And those who are happy with the RT platform already bought a tablet running RT, and are unlikely to buy a new model so soon.
  • -3 Hide
    DjEaZy , September 12, 2013 9:43 PM
    Rumor: Microsoft Working on Surface Mini Tablet? Four Questions... Yea? And? So? What??
  • 0 Hide
    JOSHSKORN , September 13, 2013 3:08 AM
    Microsoft should work on building a removable phone into the Surface Tablet. That is, the SmartPhone to work as extra storage or have some sort of docking mode when plugged in, but Surface be able to run independently without it (as in the phone is in use being held against the user's ear).
  • Display all 13 comments.
  • 1 Hide
    nightwingv , September 13, 2013 4:24 AM
    imo microsoft should release a bigger tablet rather than going smaller. something 13-14" would be nice for productivity..

    just my 2c
  • 2 Hide
    damianrobertjones , September 13, 2013 4:37 AM
    "With current situation in the app store,"

    ...and what situation would that be?
  • 0 Hide
    back_by_demand , September 13, 2013 5:17 AM
    "With current situation in the app store,"

    Yep, no sutuation except not having as many "junk" apps clogging up the store just to make it look full. Seriously, Android fans, do you really need 160 fart apps?
  • 1 Hide
    3dsmaxusr01 , September 13, 2013 10:12 AM
    It'd be cool if it will have a digitizer.
  • 0 Hide
    MfastPrincess , September 13, 2013 12:04 PM
    "Microsoft should work on building a removable phone into the Surface Tablet. That is, the SmartPhone to work as extra storage or have some sort of docking mode when plugged in, but Surface be able to run independently without it (as in the phone is in use being held against the user's ear)."

    I was just talking about this the other day. I totally agree. Or a bluetooth "phone" to go along with it.
  • 0 Hide
    ethanolson , September 13, 2013 12:21 PM
    I'm cool with RT now that it's running 8.1 (preview) and I've been using it a lot lately. HOWEVER, the lo resolution ticks me off... so I will likely get a higher res model if they do in fact offer one. The performance boost will also be nice.
  • 0 Hide
    w8gaming , September 13, 2013 1:21 PM
    "With current situation in the app store,"

    ...and what situation would that be?

    No Whatsapp, one of the most popular app currently in competing app store.
    Viber? no.
    No Soundhound. Sure it has Shazam, it also has a comment saying "it cannot work at all".
    Spotify? nope. Pandora? no.
    VLC media player? no. In fact, it is worse, lots of fake app posting as the real thing.
    Ventrilo? no.
    DOSBox? no.
    Navigation app? If there is any, I can't see where they are.
    No need to mention the huge collection of games. No need to mention many Google related software as it will be unfair.

  • 0 Hide
    mitchellvii , September 13, 2013 2:39 PM
    Let me get this straight. MS is gonna drop a Haswell into a failed design (Surface Pro) and expect it to sell this time? Lol, only MS.

    The Surface Pro failed because the form factor is wrong for business. No backlit keyboard, impossible to use on your lap, not enough ports and too small a screen to run most legacy apps.

    Surface 2 is a better idea but it will be killed by Bay Trail tablets running full fat Windows 8.1. It's only hope is that no one comes out with a similarly prices Bay Trail with a full HD screen. But I'm sure someone will.
  • 0 Hide
    hixbot , September 15, 2013 3:12 AM
    I'd buy a 7" x86 tablet if it had wireless HDMI. It would make a perfect HTPC.
  • 0 Hide
    Harry_Wild , September 15, 2013 11:50 PM
    I use my Nexus 7 2013 for mostly surfing the internet and e-books. So a Mini Surface would work well for people like me. It just has to good display resolution and be fast for browsing. I may sell my Nexus for either an iPad Mini 2 - retina or possibly this Surface Mini if the resolution is HD like the Nexus is!