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Microsoft Takes on Apple's Entry-Level iPad With 10-inch 'Surface Go' Starting at $399

Microsoft yesterday unveiled the 10-inch Surface Go, the company's smallest and lightest tablet computer to date. Priced at $399, the device is aimed at the same $500-and-under market as Apple's 9.7-inch iPad, which starts at $329.

Looks-wise, the Go is basically a smaller version of the $799 Surface Pro, including the integrated kickstand and a front-facing camera above the 1800 x 1200 resolution IPS touchscreen display.


On the right side of the Go is a magnetic Surface Connector port for charging and connecting to a desktop dock, one USB-C port, and a headphone jack, with a microSD card slot located underneath the hinge.

Inside, the Go features a fanless Kaby Lake dual-core Intel Pentium Gold processor, 4GB or 8GB RAM, and 64GB or 128GB solid-state storage. Microsoft claims the Go has up to 9 hours of battery life.

Weighing in at 1.15lbs, the Go is slightly heavier than Apple's iPad. Like the Surface Pro, the Go supports the $99 Surface Pen (Apple added Apple Pencil support to its $329 iPad in March) and optional keyboard cover, which starts at $99 in black, with four color options costing $129. The optional Surface Mobile Mouse costs $35.


Off the shelf, Surface Go devices will run Windows 10 in "S mode", a streamlined version of Microsoft's desktop OS that only runs verified apps downloaded from the Windows Store, although customers can switch to the regular version of Windows 10 at no additional cost. For business customers, Microsoft is also offering a Surface Go with Windows 10 Pro installed for $449.

The $399 Surface Go ships August 2 in the U.S. and two dozen other markets, with Wi-Fi versions available initially and LTE versions to come later in the year.

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Top Rated Comments

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2 weeks ago

Windows S is going to hamstring this, given that you can only run apps from the windows app store.


no hamstring since you can upgrade to regular windows for free.
Rating: 31 Votes
2 weeks ago

Who is this for?

Those who want to experience the pain of Windows 10 in a more portable and affordable form-factor. :p
Rating: 20 Votes
2 weeks ago
Nice looking package with decent specs and options for the price point.
Rating: 19 Votes
2 weeks ago
There is such a lot of misinformation out there. If you are going to compare to Apple products, at least be fair. Windows 10 S means you can only install apps from the Microsoft store. It does run full Windows 10 home. You can upgrade, one way, to Windows 10 Home (Full) and install apps from anywhere. Most people, who just want to use the standard apps (Mail, Calendat, web etc) will find Windows 10 S more secure (which it is) compared to unrestricted. This is similar to Mac's Gatekeeper where you can set up a Mac to only install from App Store. An advantage of Gatekeeper is that you can turn this on. The downside is you can't get a Mac for $400 so with iOs, there is only the store.

Apart from that - it all depends if you want to use Windows or iOS. To me - the specs seem reasonable. You are not going to be gaming but you'll be able to use it as a good educational product if you want. I think it's a serious contender to the iPad if Windows is your thing. The only downside is it's too expensive once you add a keyboard (which you'll probably need) - wheras for an iPad, you can easily get away with not having one.
Rating: 16 Votes
2 weeks ago

I see the word pentium in the description and I can't help but think in 2018, that means running really slow. I could be wrong, but I think the advantages of the iPad far outweigh what this offers


So an iPad can do everything a MacBook running OS X can do and just as fast?

I understand there are people on here who use iPads as their primary computing device, but iPads are still an alternative to Mac’s, not a direct replacement.

Microsoft is finally trying to develop a class of devices that offer an alternative to a full-blown Windows PC instead of marketing these things as replacements.

To say that one of these devices should be able to do everything a Windows PC with an Intel Core i5 or Core i7 processor can do is simply an unfair comparison.
Rating: 15 Votes
2 weeks ago
no thanks. i'll wait until Microsoft figures out how to do Windows Updates properly.
Rating: 15 Votes
2 weeks ago
I’m sure it will provide the same delightful user experience for which MS is famous.
Rating: 15 Votes
2 weeks ago
Windows S is going to hamstring this, given that you can only run apps from the windows app store. I see the word pentium in the description and I can't help but think in 2018, that means running really slow. I could be wrong, but I think the advantages of the iPad far outweigh what this offers
Rating: 10 Votes
2 weeks ago

Windows S is going to hamstring this, given that you can only run apps from the windows app store. I see the word pentium in the description and I can't help but think in 2018, that means running really slow. I could be wrong, but I think the advantages of the iPad far outweigh what this offers


The article states that it can be unlocked from S mode to full desktop mode for free.

The current Pentium line is actually a pretty decent performer. It’s not the old 1990’s Pentium. Now it’s just a marketing name. Like i3, i5, i7, etc
Rating: 9 Votes
2 weeks ago
This is doomed. I'll copy and paste what I wrote in another post:

Hmm, I just read through the Wired article. So $399 gets you 4gb RAM and 64gb storage. The 4gb RAM kind of sucks for legacy windows, but this has windows S out of the gate so I'd say it's more than ok if you are not planning to upgrade to full windows. The 64gb storage is atrocious, NO ONE in 2018 should be releasing a laptop or tablet with 64gb storage, that's just unacceptable, especially with the large install size of full windows. No keyboard or pen included as I predicted, bad bad bad, although at least it does have pen support. MS needs to undercut Apple here, and providing at least the keyboard would help it do that. Not to mention chromebooks already come with a hardware keyboard, so this adds an extra $129 to the price, or whatever they price the keyboards at.

Let's see, 9 hours of battery life?!? Terrible, awful. The 2017 SP is rated for 13.5 hours. Keep in mind that in real life, at least in personal experience, you should cut MS' battery estimates in half, so 6 or so hours is more accurate for a 2017 surface pro when doing light computer work. So by sacrificing the core processor and having a smaller screen the GO actually gets less battery life?!!?

The CPU still concerns me. Panos goes to great lengths to describe how all the software was tuned to run smoothly. This concerns me, is the CPU that bad that the software needs to be tuned to it? What hopes do we have of running full windows and legacy programs with that CPU? He says it is graphically 20-30% better than the surface 3. I'm not sure I'd be proud of those numbers against something released 3 years ago. It's a shame because windows has made such incredible strides in those 3 years and now is a phenomenal touch/tablet OS.

I predicted RT would die the day of its release, this seems like RT 2.0 and I predict that it will also die. The surface pro 3 at least had a running chance with full windows support, but even that died. You just can't out ipad the ipad at this point with watered down windows, especially with having poor battery life. My prediction: DOA.
Rating: 9 Votes

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