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Microsoft announces the new Surface Windows 8 Tablets (Windows RT and Windows 8 Pro models)

Microsoft’s CEO Steve Ballmer has officially announced Microsoft’s own 10-inch Windows 8 tablet called Surface at a Los Angeles event on June 18, 2012. According to Microsoft, there are two Microsoft Surface PC versions, an Intel-based tablet running on Windows 8 Pro and one based on the ARM chipset with Windows 8 RT. Both tablets will come with Microsoft's ClearType HD display technology, a vapor-deposited (PVD) magnesium chassis which Microsoft calls VaporMg casing and a built-in kickstand. More about Microsoft Surface Windows 8 Tablets specs and features after the jump.

As for the accessories, Microsoft will offer two keyboard covers for Surface: Touch Cover and Type Cover. Both, when folded up, serve as protective covers that connect to the Surface via a magnetic connector. When opened, the covers are keyboards. The Touch Cover is 3 mm in thickness and has a touch-sensitive keyboard and multi-touch trackpad. The Type Cover is thicker and includes a more traditional keyboard. Both also include a multitouch touchpad.

Microsoft Surface Windows 8 Tablets Features:

  • Always on the go - Surface is thin, light and it has a great battery. At 9.3mm, Surface for Windows RT is just thin enough to still sport a full sized USB port. Print, share, or charge your phone on the go. Head out knowing that you are ready for anything.
  • Hands off entertainment - Surface has a 10.6", 16:9 widescreen HD Display. Microsoft's ClearType HD Display technology delivers a great picture for movies. An ultra-wide viewing angle makes it easy for your friends to share in the vibrant experience. The auto-adjusting screen intensity delivers great visual clarity, indoors and out. The addition of the Micro SD card slot means you can bring your entire movie and music collection with you on vacation.
  • Type with ease and get stuff done - Some activities call for a keyboard. Surface comes with an integrated Kickstand and a revolutionary, 3mm thin, pressure sensitive cover that doubles as a fully functioning keyboard and trackpad. Your Touch Cover connects to your Surface with a single magnetic click. Now you can chat with friends and respond to emails comfortably.
  • Capture life from all sides - Surface has not just one, but two cameras. Use the front LifeCam to chat with the people that you care about. The rear-facing LifeCam is angled to 22 degrees so you can flip out the Kickstand and record meetings and events hands-free. Stereo speakers and dual microphones tuned for Skype help you sound like you are right next door.
  • Protect what matters - Surface was designed to be your go-to-device. It comes with a precision crafted VaporMg casing that protects the vital technology inside and leaves a high quality finish and feel.
  • Express yourself - Touch Cover comes in five vibrant colors. Type Cover offers classic typing experience for those who prefer a more traditional keyboard. Pick the one that best meets your needs and represents your sense of style.

What's the difference between Microsoft Surface for Windows RT and Windows 8 Pro models? Here’s a specs comparison between the two models.

Surface for Windows RT Tablet Specifications:
NVIDIA Tegra-based ARM chip processor
10.6-inch ClearType HD display
Windows RT + Office Home & Student 2013 RT
32GB / 64GB storage
microSD, USB 2.0, Micro HD Video, 2×2 MIMO antennae
31.5Wh battery
Weight: 676 grams
Thickness: 9.3 millimeters
Accessories: Touch Cover, Type Cover, VaporMg Case & Stand

Surface for Windows 8 Pro Tablet Specifications:
Intel Core i5 (Ivy Bridge) processor
10.6-inch ClearType Full HD (1080p) display
Windows 8 Pro
64GB / 128GB storage
microSDXC, USB 3.0, Mini DisplayPort, 2×2 MIMO antennae
42Wh battery
Weight: 903 grams
Thickness: 13.5 millimeters
Accessories: Touch Cover, Type Cover, VaporMg Case & Stand, Pen with Palm Block

There's no official word yet on pricing and availability although the ARM-based Surface will be priced "competitively" compared to other ARM tablets according to Microsoft while the Intel model should go higher.

Source: Microsoft

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