Does the Surface Use Microsoft's MagSafe-style Connector?

Just last week, a newly public patent application revealed that Microsoft was at least thinking about a MagSafe style connector capable of delivering both data and power. Now it seems rumors say Redmond could be debuting this new connector and port with its just-announced Surface tablets.

Hands-on time with the device last night revealed a strange-looking and unfamiliar port on the side of the tablet. One of Engadget's readers noticed that the port in question looks curiously like the MagSafe-style port detailed in last week's US patent application. The application illustration shows a four-prong connector with a configuration much like the one seen in the picture below.


Microsoft didn't provide an awful lot in the way of nitty gritty details last night, so we're still in the dark about many aspects of the Surface, including this strange port. Still, with several months until the tablet hits the market, Microsoft has plenty of time to talk details. We're just hoping they won't wait too long.

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  • back_by_demand
    Surely the keyboard / case utilises this patent, it transfers both data (keystrokes) and power, and is a magnetic connector, ok maybe it doesn't have the 5 pin style from the illustration but it's the implementation not the styling that matters with patents
  • Osmin
    I always loved the magnetic power connector concept that Apple used on their laptops and expected the technology to be transferred to all their portable products. It’s funny that Microsoft will take the idea and make use of it first. Let’s hope this starts the spread of magnetic connectors to all portable devices, because if Microsoft can get away with it, then others will follow. Just make a new standard magnetic cable that is different from Apple.
  • DRosencraft
    I don't recall the story of the patent application mentioning whether or not MSFT actually received the patent. I had said I was skeptical on the idea of adding yet another connection to the plethora of connection types floating around out there, but this could be a legitimate utility provided that it is as relatively compact as it appears. It would beat having a considerably longer protrusion of a USB cable. But, perhaps I'm not the best person to comment on such things since I have no interest in any tablets.