Microsoft's new 12-inch Surface Pro 3 is all the rage right now, as it was only recently unveiled by the Redmond giant. This device is designed to replace your laptop, offering you a hybrid between a tablet and a laptop. It runs Windows 8.1 Pro and runs desktop applications along with Modern apps.
Recently, we showcased a video that shows off the Surface Pro 3's drawing and writing capabilities with the N-trig pen. We also showcased a few videos in which we felt offered the best hands-on review of the device. But there are five particular features of the device that really stand out in my opinion (in no particular order). Let's dive in and take a look.
Dual-purpose charging port that doubles as a data port
The new Surface Pro 3 features a magnetic connector on the side of the device that allows you to magnetically connect the charger to the device so you can charge the battery. However, if you purchase the optional Surface Docking Station ($199), you can add a display port, an audio input/output jack, an Ethernet port, as well as a high-speed USB 3.0 and three USB 2.0 ports. All this is achievable via the magnetic connector, resulting in additional data ports.
This "feature" has been available in previous models, but has been improved for the Surface Pro 3. If you are a power user and require numerous ports, this is a fantastic option. However, if you want simplicity and a clean device design, the Surface Pro 3 offers that by default with just one USB 3.0 port, a mini DisplayPort, and a headset jack.
The display is durable and impressive
Did you know that the 12-inch Surface Pro 3 features a smaller bezel and is made out of durable Gorilla Glass 3? "Gorilla Glass 3 is not only chemically strengthened - its atomic configuration is formulated so that the glass is more durable, and fundamentally tougher and more damage resistant even before chemical strengthening," the product description states.
Not only is the device made of Gorilla Glass, but the 12-inch 2160x1440 resolution screen only has two layers, offering 50% more pixels than the Surface Pro 2. The device only has the LCD and the Gorilla Glass on top of it. Having only two layers rather than multiple layers greatly reduces the parallax effect, especially when using a stylus pen. Microsoft also uses an oleophobic coating on the Surface Pro 3 display to help prevent fingerprints marks.
The device is also set to a default display scaling of 150 percent. After all, a high resolution and a smaller screen can make things a bit hard to see or read. Thankfully, Microsoft realized this and automatically scaled the display to 150%.
5MP front and rear camera, 1080p video
The Surface Pro 3 features a 5MP front and rear camera, offering decent quality if you were to utilize your Surface Pro 3 for taking pictures. If you elect to record video, the device records at an impressive 1080p resolution. You can also partake in a video call via Skype thanks to the gorgeous 1080p camera.
Impressive performance and battery life
Did you know that the Surface Pro 3 promises fantastic battery performance? In fact, the Surface Pro 3, which happens to come in three Intel Core CPU options - i3, i5, and i7 - will feature the same battery performance. In fact, the Surface Pro 3 can charge from 0% to 80% in just two hours, and to 100% in just four hours. On top of that, the Core i7 version of the Surface Pro 3 will see benchmark scores of approximately 15 to 20% better than the Surface Pro 3 with an Intel Core i5 CPU.
Microsoft also promises that the battery can be charged daily (for 5 days a week) for over 4.5 years and still maintain an 80% capacity.
The device comes in three variants: Intel Core i3 4020Y, clocked at 1.50GHz with Intel HD Graphics 4200; Intel Core i5 4300U clocked at 1.6GHz (Turbo Boost up to 2.90GHz) with Intel HD Graphics 4400; and Intel Core i7 4650U clocked at 1.7GHz (Turbo Boost up to 3.3GHz) with Intel HD Graphics 5000.
Fantastic and flexible kickstand
One of the key new features of the Surface Pro 3 is the flexible kickstand. Specifically, the kickstand can adjust up to a 150 degree angle. The flexible kickstand also allows for more stability, making the overall length of the device shorter on your lap. This also places the keyboard at a slight angle too.
Microsoft cycled the kickstand thousands of times in order to make sure it works great and continues to work great without a hitch. With the Surface Pro 2, you were restricted on what positions you could adjust the kickstand to, but with the Surface Pro 3, you can make the device work in whatever manner fits you best.
These are my top five features of the new Surface Pro 3. Let's hear yours in the comments below.