Thank Goodness: Microsoft's Budget Surface Entries All Start With 8GB RAM

Surface Laptop Go in four colors.
(Image credit: Tom's Hardware)

Microsoft's entry-level budget devices, the new Surface Laptop Go 3 and Surface Go 4 for Business, are finally ditching starting configurations with 4GB of RAM. Thank goodness!

It may seem like a small change, but several of Microsoft's customers, like Dell and HP, have largely eschewed 4GB configurations, especially on premium products.

Both previous generations of these devices started at 4GB of RAM. And in theory, Microsoft could have tried to justify doing so again; After all, 4GB is the minimum memory to run Windows 11. One demo rep on Microsoft's show floor told me, "4GB isn't good enough for anything."

But now, even at their base configurations, both start at 8GB of RAM. The Surface Laptop Go 3 starts at $799, while the Surface Go 4 for Business begins at $579 (but I'm sure you'll want to buy a keyboard).

It's all about time. I've been seeing fewer and fewer machines start at 4GB. Those that do primarily come off as attempts to upsell to 8GB. Now, if only they would bump up the Go 4 for Business' starting storage from 64GB!

Today's Surface event saw other memory-related news. The Surface Laptop Studio 2 is the first Surface machine ever to feature 64GB of memory, marking a high point for RAM in Microsoft laptops.

Clearly, for Microsoft, 8GB is the new 4GB. Hopefully, that new memory helps increase performance for Copilot, which was announced today and will generally be available on September 26.

Andrew E. Freedman is a senior editor at Tom's Hardware focusing on laptops, desktops and gaming. He also keeps up with the latest news. A lover of all things gaming and tech, his previous work has shown up in Tom's Guide, Laptop Mag, Kotaku, PCMag and Complex, among others. Follow him on Threads @FreedmanAE and Mastodon @FreedmanAE.mastodon.social.

  • HideOut
    I purchased 64GB of ram about 3-4 weeks ago for $86 shipped at the egg. Celebrating a machine that costs that much, and is NOT upgradable for having at least 8GB just shows how much BS THG supports now. Hey, at least when you click on buy it THG gets their kickback.
    Reply
  • Amdlova
    budget ?
    Reply
  • tamalero
    Amdlova said:
    budget ?
    Thats the PR speak for the "cheapest of our product line" aka the "if you can't even afford these, not sorry".
    Reply
  • Alvar "Miles" Udell
    It STARTS at $799 and doesn't even have a 1920x1080 display, in 2023. This only provides another example as to why Surface devices are just not worth the money, and is a good thing the head of the Surface division is leaving. When you can get a Lenovo IdeaPad 3 with a 15.6" 1920x1080 touch screen for $740 and the only tradeoff between it and the entry level Surface Go 3 is you have two fewer E cores (2P+8E vs 2P+10E), and there are a number of other options at the same price point with superior specs. what possible reason would there be to get a Surface?
    Reply
  • peachpuff
    HideOut said:
    I purchased 64GB of ram about 3-4 weeks ago for $86 shipped at the egg. Celebrating a machine that costs that much, and is NOT upgradable for having at least 8GB just shows how much BS THG supports now. Hey, at least when you click on buy it THG gets their kickback.
    Just buy it!
    Reply
  • Amdlova
    tamalero said:
    Thats the PR speak for the "cheapest of our product line" aka the "if you can't even afford these, not sorry".
    yeah This insane 10bucks of ram 500++++ price! and its soldered if you need more ram buy another one.
    Reply
  • tamalero
    Amdlova said:
    yeah This insane 10bucks of ram 500++++ price! and its soldered if you need more ram buy another one.
    exactly, that is why you're locked on having to buy way more expensive just for the ram x_x
    Reply