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Rumor: Microsoft testing new Surface RT with Snapdragon 800 chipset

This shouldn't really be too surprising to many people, but the latest rumors surrounding the Surface RT state that Microsoft is currently testing a new version of the tablet with Qualcomm's Snapdragon 800 chipset inside. Bloomberg claims that Microsoft will update the tablet with new chips from Qualcomm, while NVIDIA will "continue as a supplier for some versions", presumably including the existing model with its Tegra 3 chipset.

Meanwhile, The Verge is citing separate "sources familiar to Microsoft's Surface plans", stating that a Windows RT 8.1 Surface device is already in testing at Microsoft, powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 chipset. The report accurately states that the ARM-based chip has integrated LTE radios, but it's unclear at this stage whether a future Surface will come with mobile broadband capabilities.

Why isn't this news surprising? Recently Microsoft appear to have been clearing out their remaining Surface RT stock, offering low prices to students, offloading 10,000 units to educators across the United States, and deeply discounting the tablet at TechEd earlier in the month. It seems likely that a refreshed Surface RT will make an appearance towards the end of the year, after the current model has been on sale for a year.

Source: Bloomberg, The Verge

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