Microsoft Reveals New Band 2, Lumia Phones, Surface Pro 4, and Surface Book

At a media event today, Microsoft announced a handful of new products and several updates to existing products coming from the company in 2015 and beyond. Topics for today's event included the Microsoft Band 2, Lumia 950 and 950 XL smartphones, Microsoft Surface Pro 4, and the all-new Surface Book.

The company started off by going into detail about the Microsoft Band 2, the second version of last year's wearable device. Microsoft said it took in a great amount of customer feedback in designing and implementing the new Band, which includes a new curved screen with durable Corning Gorilla Glass 3 and an improved touch display. New Cortana integration lets users speak to the Band in order to send texts and make reminders, and the device also includes a barometer that measures elevation for everything from hiking to climbing stairs.


The company's Microsoft Health app fuels the Band and lets users dig deeply into the data on everything from calorie burns to estimated recovery time for particularly intense workouts. The Band even includes an extensive golf measurement feature that can interpret the stroke of a swing and includes a score card that the company says is like "having your own personal caddy" on your wrist. Third-party partnerships with companies like Uber and Facebook are also incoming for the Microsoft Band 2, which will be available on October 30 for $249.

Microsoft then announced the Lumia 950 and 950 XL which are the newest iterations of the Lumia smartphone line, with 5.2-inch and 5.5-inch displays, respectively. Each of the new phones include a new feature called Glance Screen which showcases important pieces of information when a user pulls the phone out of his or her pocket, without the need to interact with the device directly and without using battery life. The Lumia 950 line also includes a 20-megapixel camera, Triple LED RGB natural flash, optical image stabilization, and a dedicated camera button on the side of the phone.

Lumia-950-and-950-XL
The 32GB 950 and 950 XL also comes with a USB Type-C connector that Microsoft promises can charge the devices up to 50 percent within a span of 30 minutes. The company continued by showcasing a brief beta demo of a face-recognition feature that unlocks the Lumia devices by simply holding them up to your face, similar to Microsoft's hands-off sign-in feature introduced on the Xbox One in 2013. It then provided a brief demo of the Microsoft Display Dock, which connects a Windows Phone to a PC for the two devices to work in unison to manipulate documents and manage user data.

Next, the company covered the Microsoft Surface Pro 4, which it claims is the "thinnest, most powerful Core PC" shipped to date. The device comes with a 12.3-inch display, but the overall footprint of the device hasn't grown any bigger, thanks to a reduction in the size of the bezels. The display includes a 0.4 mm-thin Gorilla Glass cover and the Surface Pro 4 will come with a new Surface Pen with 1,024 points of pressure and an eraser on the tip that also activates Cortana on the tablet when held down.


Overall, the Surface Pro 4 is 30 percent faster than the Surface Pro 3 and 50 percent faster than the MacBook Air, with 16GB of RAM and 1TB of storage. The company says it compromised "nothing" in the new iteration, maintaining a thin body while offering significantly better performance. Microsoft also introduced a new Type Cover, with a larger trackpad, backlit keyboard, and an integrated fingerprint reader for users on the older Surface Pro 3 who don't have the camera authentication of Microsoft Hello on the Surface Pro 4. The Surface Pro 4 will be available on October 26, starting at $899.

Lastly, the company introduced the Surface Book, "the first laptop ever built by Microsoft." The new laptop includes a 13.5-inch PixelSense screen with 6 million pixels and supported Microsoft Pen and touch screen capabilities. The Surface Book offers 12 hours of battery life with an Nvidia GeForce GPU and high-speed GDDR5 memory, and the company calls the Surface Book "the fastest laptop ever made, anywhere, on any planet."


When comparing the Surface Book directly with the MacBook Pro, Microsoft stated that its new laptop is two times faster than Apple's device. The Surface Book will also let customers remove the screen, turning it into a temporary Surface Pro 4-esque tablet. The Surface Book is priced at $1,499 and will launch on October 26, along with the Surface Pro 4. The new Lumia 950 and 950 XL, Microsoft Band 2, Surface Pro 4, and Surface Book will also be available for customers to pre-order beginning tomorrow, October 7.

Top Rated Comments

(View all)
Avatar
61 months ago
The Surface Book looks great, only problem is... it runs Windows..
Score: 63 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
61 months ago
Wow... Impressive stuff Microsoft.
Kudos !
Score: 57 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
61 months ago
Surface Book is the device that can push Apple to the land of hybrids. This is the future.
Score: 39 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
61 months ago
I'm really impressed with the Surface Pro 4. I'm even considering selling my Air 2 to get one. It seems to do things out of the box what i wish my iPad did.
Good job Microsoft.
Score: 33 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
61 months ago
I love my MacBook, but I also love that Microsoft is helping to push laptops forward- it's not just good competition for Apple; it's good competition for HP, Dell, Lenovo, and other PC manufacturers as well.

Microsoft introduced some fantastic hardware today!
Score: 32 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
61 months ago
Far more interesting than the two Nexus phones Google announced.
Score: 31 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

Apple Doubles the Price of RAM Upgrade on Entry-Level 13-Inch MacBook Pro

Saturday May 30, 2020 4:00 pm PDT by
Apple today doubled the price for upgrading the RAM on the entry-level 13-inch MacBook Pro, with customers in the United States now being charged $200 to move from 8GB to 16GB compared to the previous $100 upgrade price. Similar increases are seen in other countries, such as moving from €125 to €250 in Germany and from £100 to £200 in the United Kingdom. Current pricing on RAM upgrade for ...

8 Mac Tips and Tricks You Might Not Know

Friday May 29, 2020 12:36 pm PDT by
There are tons of hidden features and shortcuts for Macs that Apple has built into macOS over the years, ranging from shortcuts to keyboard commands to other little hacks to make Mac usage just a bit simpler. In our latest YouTube video, we highlighted several of these tips and tricks, and some of them might just be new to you. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. Tr...

Apple Begins Selling Refurbished iPhone XR Models

Thursday May 28, 2020 9:50 pm PDT by
Apple today began selling certified refurbished iPhone XR models in select colors and capacities for the first time in the United States. Refurbished iPhone XR models are priced at a roughly 16 percent discount compared to current pricing on brand-new units, knocking $100–120 off of the regular price. In addition to the 64GB and 128GB capacities matching current brand-new iPhone XR models, ...

Top Stories: macOS 10.15.5, New Powerbeats Pro Colors, iPhone 12 and 13 Rumors, and More

Saturday May 30, 2020 6:00 am PDT by
This week saw an interesting mix of news and rumors on the Apple front, led by the release of macOS 10.15.5, which brings a new battery health feature to newer Mac notebooks, while we also saw the official announcement of new colors for the Powerbeats Pro earphones. On the rumor front, we heard a few tidbits about not just this year's iPhone 12 but also next year's iPhone, while we saw...

Powerbeats Pro Debut in Four New Colors: Spring Yellow, Cloud Pink, Lava Red, and Glacier Blue

Friday May 29, 2020 10:00 am PDT by
Following a couple of leaks in recent weeks, Beats today is officially announcing four new colors for its Powerbeats Pro wireless earphones: Spring Yellow, Cloud Pink, Lava Red, and Glacier Blue. The new earphones will go on sale June 9 and sell for the same $249.95 price as the existing color options. Aside from the colors, the new Powerbeats Pro models are otherwise identical to the...

Apple Releases macOS Catalina 10.15.5 With Battery Health Management Features, Fix for Finder Freezing

Tuesday May 26, 2020 1:59 pm PDT by
Apple today released macOS Catalina 10.15.5, the fifth update to the macOS Catalina operating system that was released in October 2019. macOS Catalina 10.15.5 comes two months after the launch of macOS Catalina 10.15.4, which introduced Screen Time Communication Limits. macOS Catalina 10.15.5 is a free update that can be downloaded from the Mac App Store using the Update feature in the...

Apple Making It Harder to Avoid Nagging macOS Update Notifications

Thursday May 28, 2020 8:13 am PDT by
With the release of macOS Catalina 10.15.5 and related security updates for macOS Mojave and High Sierra earlier this week, Apple is making it more difficult for users to ignore available software updates and remain on their current operating system versions. Included in the release notes for macOS Catalina 10.15.5 is the following:- Major new releases of macOS are no longer hidden when...

Leaker Shares Details on 'iPhone 13' Camera [Updated]

Wednesday May 27, 2020 4:27 pm PDT by
The next-generation iPhone 12 lineup coming in fall 2020 isn't out yet, but Fudge (@choco_bit), a leaker who sometimes shares information on upcoming Apple devices, today offered up details on what Apple has in store for the 2021 iPhone 13's camera setup. A simple design drawing depicts a device with a four camera array, which Fudge claims will have the following features: 64-megapixel...

More Photos and Video of Apple's Redesigned Leather Loop Watch Band Surface

Thursday May 28, 2020 10:50 am PDT by
Images of a new version of the Leather Loop that Apple appears to have in development surfaced yesterday, and today, Vietnamese site Tinhte.vn has shared additional photos and videos that give us a clearer picture of what to expect from the new band. The bands come in colors that include red, hot pink, blue, black, and brown, with some of the bands featuring different colored accents at the...

Tile Writes to EU Accusing Apple of Abuse of Power

Friday May 29, 2020 4:29 am PDT by
Bluetooth accessory maker Tile has written to the European Union accusing Apple of abuse of power and of illegally favoring its own products. According to a report by Financial Times, in a letter sent on Tuesday to the European Commissioner for Competition, the accessory maker said that Apple is making it harder for users to use Tile products on iPhone because it has its own rival Find My...