After being announced almost 10 months ago, Microsoft's Surface Pro is finally available for pre-order, and it will ship on May 1. The device has been available since December 1 in a commercial model, but it will finally be coming to consumers.
Some things seem to have changed since we first broke the story of details of the PC back at Microsoft's Ignite 2017 conference. There were to be two models, both with a Core i5; one was to have 4GB of RAM and 128GB of storage while the other has 8GB of RAM and 256GB of storage. While both were made available for businesses, only the latter is available for consumers at this time. We've reached out to Microsoft to verify whether the lower end model will be coming.
There's still not a Core i7 variant of the Surface Pro with Advanced LTE. The reason for this is because the i5 model was built with a fanless design and the i7 model wasn't. The Snapdragon X16 modem that's used is actually placed where the fan is located on the i7 variant. That modem is capable of gigabit LTE speeds too, but Microsoft has it capped at 450Mbps. The company says it can change this in a firmware update going forward if networks ever catch up.
Cellular connectivity shouldn't affect battery life, or at least by much. Microsoft told us that even if you're connected to LTE all the time, you'll still get 90% of the 13.5 hours of promised battery life. The device includes both an e-SIM and a nano-SIM slot, which means that you can connect to a network through software, or just pop a SIM card in there.
The model of the Surface Pro with Advanced LTE that's available for pre-order now costs $1,449, and that gets you a Core i5-7300U processor, Intel HD Graphics 620, 8GB of RAM, and 256GB of onboard storage. You can find it on the Microsoft Store here.