Microsoft’s next-generation Surface computer is now available for pre-order in 23 countries.
The Surface 2 computer will be available in early 2012 and Samsung started to take pre-orders for the unit on Thursday. “Customers across a wide range of industries currently integrate Microsoft Surface and make it relevant to their business needs, creating immersive, collaborative and meaningful experiences,” said Somanna Palacanda, director, Microsoft Surface. “With the Samsung SUR40 available for pre-order in 23 countries worldwide, Surface computing will now be more readily available for education, financial and professional services, healthcare, hospitality, retail, manufacturing and resources, and other commercial business environments to help deliver interactive digital content, drive sales, showcase brands, and increase customer satisfaction and loyalty.”
Microsoft originally unveiled its second generation Surface computer at the 2011 Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas earlier this year. The Surface 2.0 is a vast improvement from the original Surface and allows retailers to purchase the system at a much lower cost. Popular Science named the Surface 2 the “best of what’s new for 2011″ on Wednesday.The Surface 2.0 will be priced at around $8,400 and features a multicore CPU and GPU by AMD. The samsung SUR40 is made up of an AMD Athlon 2.9GHz dual core processor, 4GB RAM, 320GB HDD, AMD Radeon HD 6750 GPU and a 40-inch HD LCD display.
The display at the heart of the Surface 2 allows for more than 50 points of contacts and is coated in Gorilla Glass for protection. The top part of Microsoft’s Surface 2 uses the biggest piece of gorilla glass that has ever been bonded to an LCD. Microsoft has worked hard with Samsung to ensure the product is suitable for use in locations such as night clubs, bars and food outlets. Although the unit is not “water proof”, both Samsung and Microsoft worked to create drain channels on the device for instances when liquid hits the unit. Microsoft’s Windows 7 will power the new Surface. Samsung manufactures the device in partnership with Microsoft and the new model is just 4-inches thick. Due to the new size of the Surface 2, customers have the option to mount it vertically.
The Surface 2 also responds to objects using optical tag recognition and the ability to read objects using Microsoft’s new PixelSense technology. PixelSense is a proprietary Microsoft technology developed by the company over the past few years. An infrared and optical sensor powers every display pixel and gives an LCD display the power to recognize fingers, hands and objects placed on the screen. As a result there’s over a million sensors in the device seeing what’s on the screen.
Microsoft delivered its Surface 2.0 SDK in July which features a greater Metro style design. Application developers can now target Surface and Windows 7 touch enabled PCs thanks to the fact the Surface runs an embedded version of Windows 7.