The Surface Book 2 is Microsoft’s latest attempt to make the ultimate hybrid laptop. We give you the low-down on the new device and what you can expect from it.
Surface Book 2: release date
The 13.5-inch version of the Surface Book 2 was released back in November 2017, earning widespread praise for both its design and performance. Since then, Microsoft has also released a larger, 15-inch model for those looking for that little extra from their laptop.
Following its initial US-exclusive debut, pre-orders for the latest Surface Book opened back in January in select European markets - with a full release following just a month later.
The next few months then saw both iterations of the Surface Book 2 roll out to additional markets around the world - including Bahrain, China, Hong Kong, India, Italy, Korea, Kuwait, Malaysia, Oman, Portugal, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Spain, Taiwan, Thailand and the United Arab Emirates.
"Surface Book 2 is the most powerful Surface we've ever built, and customers love that they can run their most demanding applications from anywhere. For those of you who have been waiting for Surface Book 2 to come to your market, the wait is over," Microsoft announced in a blog post at the time.
Surface Book 2: price
Prices for the Surface Book 2 vary depending on the specifications and screen size that you opt for.
The 13.5-inch base model configuration starts at £1,499 (including VAT), powered by an Intel Core i5 CPU, as well as featuring 256GB storage and 8GB RAM. There's also a more powerful i7 option which can be ordered for £1,999 from the Microsoft Store.
Should you require a larger storage capacity, you can get your hands on a 512GB version for £2,499, complete with Core i7 processor and 16GB RAM - or the 1TB option for £2,999.
Prices for the larger 15-inch Surface Book 2 begin at £2,349 for the base model, which ships with 256GB storage, Intel Core i7 CPU and 16GB RAM. Again, if you're looking to scale up your storage space, you can purchase a 512GB version for £2,749 or the 1TB equivalent for £3,149.
Surface Book 2: specs and features
With the Surface Book 2, Microsoft has opted for two sizes: a 13.5in model and a larger 15in version. As expected, the 15in device boasts higher specs ad a steeper price – but both retain the stylish, premium feel that proved so popular the first time around. Both versions also boast an outstanding keyboard and impressive trackpad that makes the laptop a delight to work with.
Since its release, the Redmond giant has been shouting its merits the rooftops, describing the Surface Book 2 as “the most powerful Surface device ever” thanks to the inclusion of Intel’s 8th-gen Coffee Lake CPUs. Graphics performance is also “five times more powerful” than that of the original Surface Book, Microsoft says.
Our sister website IT Pro agrees, too, describing the top-end model as “one of the most powerful devices of its form factor on the market”, thanks to its Intel 8th-gen quad-core i7-8650U processor chip. If you’re looking at purchasing the 13.5in Surface Book 2, you’ll both Core i5 and Core i7 versions – whereas the larger 15in model is only available with a Core i7 processor. However, the laptop is also available equipped with Intel’s 7th-gen CPUs if you’re not looking at the top of the range or you’re on a tighter budget.
This added power doesn’t hinder batter performance, either, making the Surface Book 2 excellent for working on the move. With the keyboard attached, you’ll get around 17 hours of battery life, Microsoft says, thanks to the keyboard itself containing much of the battery. Using the device in tablet mode will also give you around five hours of video playback – which is double the amount that the first generation Surface Book offered.
In terms of connectivity, Microsoft has finally moved away from the mini DisplayPort and opted for USB-C instead. There is a slight downside, however, with this being the USB 3.1 connection standard rather than the Thunderbolt 3 found on other machines (restricting data transfer to 5GBps).
The Surface Book 2 also sports a 5.0MP, 1080p HD Video front-facing camera, as well as an 8MP autofocus rear-facing snapper with 1080p Full HD video capture capability.
Channel Pro Newsletter
Stay up to date with the latest Channel industry news and analysis with our twice-weekly newsletter
Dan is a freelance writer and regular contributor to ChannelPro, covering the latest news stories across the IT, technology, and channel landscapes. Topics regularly cover cloud technologies, cyber security, software and operating system guides, and the latest mergers and acquisitions.
A journalism graduate from Leeds Beckett University, he combines a passion for the written word with a keen interest in the latest technology and its influence in an increasingly connected world.
He started writing for ChannelPro back in 2016, focusing on a mixture of news and technology guides, before becoming a regular contributor to ITPro. Elsewhere, he has previously written news and features across a range of other topics, including sport, music, and general news.