updated 06:39 pm EST, Thu November 29, 2012
Surface Pro may have 4.5 to five hours battery
When Microsoft launches the Windows 8 Pro version of its Surface tablet, the device will apparently have a battery life somewhere in the area of four and a half to five hours. This according to a Panos Panay, head of Microsoft's Surface project. Surface with Windows 8 Pro -- which runs the full version of Windows 8 -- will launch in January of next year.
The announcement came today in a tweet from Panay's own account. Panay didn't go into detail, but he did say the forthcoming Surface Pro will have "approximately half the battery life of Surface RT."
In Electronista's own time with Surface RT, we found that the Windows RT device gets about nine hours of use in web surfing and about ten hours of use with Wi-Fi off for video playback.
The Surface Pro's battery life puts it more in line with modern notebooks than with tablets. This is somewhat in keeping with Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer's prior descriptions of the Pro version of the device as targeted at consumers looking to replace their notebook computers. The Surface Pro runs a full version of Windows 8 and is able to run legacy Windows programs, unlike the Surface RT.
In addition to the different operating systems -- Windows 8 for Surface Pro, Windows RT for Surface RT -- the Surface Pro has an Intel Core i5 processor powering it, which may further explain the difference in battery performance compared to the ARM-powered CPU in the Windows RT version. The Pro model also features a somewhat higher-resolution display with more multi-touch input capabilities.