The Microsoft Surface Pro 5 is expected to be among the hottest devices of 2017 and the rumor mill is going into overdrive trying to anticipate what's to come.
Considering that the Surface Pro 4 launched as a powerful device aiming to replace the laptop, its successor, the Surface Pro 5, should rock even more impressive specifications and capabilities to take things to the next level.
While Microsoft is still staying mum regarding its Surface Pro 5 plans, here's what we know so far about the upcoming device.
Surface Pro 5 Specs
In terms of specifications, it's worth pointing out that Microsoft recently struck a deal with Qualcomm and demonstrated Windows 10 running on an ARM processor, which could yield a new Surface device running on a Qualcomm Snapdragon chip rather than an Intel one. Packing a Snapdragon processor would allow the Surface Pro 5 to boast improved battery performance and possibly feature LTE for cellular data connectivity.
On the other hand, the Surface Pro line always aimed to combine desktop-grade power with the portability of a tablet, so an Intel chip would make more sense than a Snapdragon processor. Microsoft could release a Surface 5 with a Snapdragon chip, and a more powerful Surface Pro 5 with an Intel Kaby Lake processor.
Aside from processing power, the Surface Pro 5 is also rumored to rock an updated Surface Pen with a rechargeable battery that can charge wirelessly when docking the stylus to the tablet. The current Surface Pen allows users to magnetically attach it to a tablet for safekeeping, but it requires an AAAA battery as it is not rechargeable.
Older Surface Pro 5 rumors, meanwhile, claimed the tablet will boast a 2K screen, but Microsoft will also offer a higher-end 4K model at a higher price. The Surface Pro 5 should also see an upgrade in the ports department, specifically replacing the Surface Pro 4's USB 3.0 port with a new USB Type-C port that could also serve for charging purposes.
The Surface Pro 5 is further rumored to see some improvements in terms of camera, Wi-Fi, and Bluetooth connectivity.
Surface Pro 5 Release Date
When it comes to the Surface Pro 5 release, things are a bit hazy but the device is not expected until spring 2017. Microsoft released its Surface Pro 4 in October 2015 and some expected the successor to debut in October 2016, but Microsoft only unveiled its Surface Studio and Surface Book i7 at its October event this year. With no Surface Pro 5 in sight so far, we're expecting a 2017 release.
Microsoft is set to launch its major Windows 10 Creators Update in spring 2017, which might indicate that the Surface Pro 5's debut will be around that time or shortly after that.
Surface Pro 5 Price
No specific pricing details have leaked just yet, but the Surface Pro 5 is expected to come along the same lines as its predecessor in terms of pricing, meaning that the price of each version should be the same or similar as for the Surface Pro 4 at launch.
A number of configurations should be in the mix, starting with an entry-level i3 model and going up to a top-of-the-line i7 variant with enough storage and RAM to bust a hole in one's wallet.