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A few days ahead of the Windows 8 launch, the specs and pricing of Microsoft Surface Tablet – revealed this June – are finally out and pre-orders have started in the United States.

The 10.6-inch tablet runs on Windows RT – the tablet version of Windows 8 – and is available in 32 GB and 64 GB versions. The 5-point multi-touch screen has a resolution of 1366 X 768. It has the NVIDIA Tegra 30 with an impressive 2 GB RAM.

 

The tablet sports front and rear 720 p HD cameras, the pixel count for which is not specified on the company site.

At 10.6 inches, the Surface Tablet is bigger than the iPad and many other 10 point some-inch tabs in the market, which will have a bearing on the battery consumption; Microsoft says the Surface’s battery is built to last eight hours with mixed activity and 7-15 days when lying idle.

The tablet has a full-size USB 2.0, MicroSDXC card slot, headset jack, HD video out port and a cover port. And both versions are Wi-Fi only, like the other mid-size tabs in the category.

As for pricing, the 32 GB tablet without the ultra-thin 3mm Touch Cover costs $499, with Touch Cover at $599 and the 64 GB version with Touch Cover comes at $699. The Touch Cover has no tactile buttons on it and attaches magnetically to the Surface; and if that’s not for you, then there is an alternative – the Type Cover with keys, available in black, that’ll cost an additional $129.

CNN gives detailed info on this smart magnetic Touch Cover they got to check out earlier at the Microsoft Labs itself:

“We also got a chance, in Microsoft’s secret labs, to attach and detach the Touch Cover, which, thanks to powerful — albeit tiny — magnets, snaps sharply into place with a resounding snap. The hold looks to be quite strong, too. At one point, Sinofsky merrily dangled the tablet, holding it only by the magnetically attached cover.

We typed a bit on the tablet’s cover, too. It’s smart enough to not react when I rested my hands on the slightly raised, pressure-sensitive urethane keyboard, but reacted well to touch typing. The cover even includes a track pad area, which also responded well to taps and gestures.”

Further, CNET writes:

“And, finally, Windows RT is not your father’s Windows. That is, it is not compatible with the millions of older Windows applications. You’ll have to wait for the Intel-based Windows 8 Pro Surface tablet (which will boast a 1,920×1,080 display) if you need to run those so-called legacy Windows apps. The Intel-based version won’t be available until next year.”

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