Microsoft has announced a modest update to its entry-level laptop in the form of the Surface Laptop Go 2. The 12.4-inch notebook, which is available for pre-order today and will go on sale on June 7, will start at $599 with Intel's Core i5-1135G7.
From the outside, not much has changed from the first Surface Laptop Go, which debuted in 2020. It's in a similar shell with the same 1536 x 1024 display that we criticized for being below 1080p. There's also still a fingerprint reader on the power button, but not on the base configuration. However, there is a new sage green color with hints of gray and blue that I think looks quite nice from the photos.
|CPU||Intel Core i5-1135G7|
|Graphics||Intel Iris Xe (integrated)|
|RAM||4GB or 8GB LPDDR4x (Up to 16GB for business)|
|Storage||128GB or 256GB SSD|
|Display||12.4-inch PixelSense, 1536 x 1024, 3:2 touchscreen|
|Networking||Wi-Fi 6 802.11ax, Bluetooth 5.1|
|Fingerprint Reader||Yes, not on 4GB RAM models|
|Ports||USB Type-C, USB Type-A, 3.5mm headphone jack, Surface Connect|
|Release Date||June 7, 2022|
The 2.48-pound laptop is, like the original, being pushed as both a competitor to Chromebooks in schools as well as a potential cheap option for businesses, though this time with Windows 11 onboard (Enterprise customers can still get Windows 10). The company claims it will last up to 13.5 hours on a charge, which would be more than enough for a school or workday if it matches up in testing.
The $599 starting price likely includes the Core i5 with just 4GB of RAM and 128GB of SSD storage. That's more expensive than the $549 launch price of the original, but that unit included 64GB of slower eMMC storage. I think twice as much storage that's far faster is worth the extra $50.
The update from Intel's 10th Gen "Ice Lake" CPUs to 11th Gen "Tiger Lake" should offer a nice increase in graphics performance, as that's when Intel switched to its Iris Xe integrated GPUs.
The fingerprint reader isn't included on the entry-level model, just like the last generation Surface Laptop Go. The keyboard otherwise appears to be the same great one from the 2020 laptop, which Microsoft claims has "30% more key travel than a MacBook Air."
Beyond sage, the Surface Laptop Go 2 will come in ice blue, sandstone (a nice gold color) and platinum.
There are a few more changes inside. Microsoft redesigned the Surface Laptop Go 2 to be a bit easier to repair. The SSD is still replaceable (though Microsoft continues to suggest using an authorized service provider), as well as the keyboard and trackpad, display, battery and Surflink cable, the last of which is used for audio. All of those parts, except for the battery, are designed to be replaced by a technician with Microsoft's own service guides. The battery still may need to be sent to Microsoft or its service providers.
Those looking for a potentially affordable laptop (those upgrades add up quickly) with Surface's build quality and design will get stronger performance, but it appears the low-res display is sticking around for another year. We'll have more impressions if we get to see the device in person.
Are you serious !!, from Microsoft, who actually makes Windows 10 & 11 which needs more RAM than the universe has?
I can understand 8GB as this is a low-cost "go" product.. but the first one!! I Can't even write it a second time, dang. That guy should be fired.
I completely agree. The fact that THG is even reviewing a 4G windows craptop is sad. Hell thats terrible for a chromebook!
They're really phoning it in or begging to install something else on it that is not Windows.