Microsoft Surface Go First Impressions: Great Screen, Short Battery Life

I only just got my hands on Microsoft's Surface Go, but I'm already finding myself thinking that I like the little computer. We're in the middle of reviewing the $549 model of Microsoft's new, budget-priced tablet, which comes with a Pentium 4415Y CPU, 8GB of RAM and 128GB of SSD storage.


Look, its 10-inch screen is small. Really small. Netbook small. But that's a preference, and I think I could learn to love it, especially considering our early test data, in which it put out an average of 404 nits of brightness and 129 percent of the sRGB color gamut. And I'm a fan of the 3:2 aspect ratio, even if makes for a slightly abnormal 1800 x 1200 resolution. But when I watched a bit of Tears of Steel, the pink and blue holograms in a gray and dreary lab really popped.

But battery life in our testing wasn't so great. We ran our usual battery test, which continuously browses the web, runs graphics tests and streams video over Wi-Fi, and the Surface Go endured for 6:06. The mainstream laptop average is 7:26 and the 9.7-inch iPad Pro ran for 10:07.

As for design, I've always been a fan of the Surface aesthetic, which is minimalist and puts the focus on Windows and your work. The hinge on the Go is nice and sturdy, and we opted for an Alcantara keyboard, which feels really nice. The only issue is that the bezels, which are quite thick, are even more noticeable around such a small screen.

We're going to spend more time with the Surface Go before our full review, but my initial impressions are positive. The big question I still have is how its Pentium Gold 4415Y CPU will hold up to my everyday computing, nevermind some of our more strenuous benchmarks. And that can sway a lot. If it can hold up, I can see it being a neat little travel machine.

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  • newsonline5000000
    For such low spec Tablets , use IPAD PRO better .. it will run MS Office smoother (iOS version) , and will have better battery life , and the APPS are made Graphically to work in Good FPS on the internal GPU.

    and more over , Full Photoshop is coming to the iOS in 2019 , not a mobile version , but a full one.

    Apple is leading in the Tablet performance and Intel cant win there because their internal GPU is slow , and the windows software are made to work on desktops and not optimized for Tablets . Unlike IPAD.
  • cknobman
    A. 128GB version is not eMMC its a SSD

    B. Your battery life test is falling well more than 1 hour shorter than every other review I've read.
  • tracyfearson
    As configured above with keyboard: $678.99
    iPad Pro (only 64gb) with keyboard: $808.00
    Surface GO = more storage and saves: $129.01

    As for performance, we shall see.