Microsoft announces $799 Surface Pro 3, "the tablet that can replace your laptop"

Xbox maker announces latest revision to its portable computing line, Intel Core i3 version sells for $799; Core i5 and Core i7 versions will also be available.

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Today during a special event in New York City, Microsoft officially announced the Surface Pro 3, "the tablet that can replace your laptop." It is the latest revision in Microsoft's Surface line, following Surface and Surface 2. Microsoft says the Surface Pro 3 will remove the "conflict" some consumers feel when they are deciding if they should buy a laptop or a tablet.

Microsoft's Surface boss Panos Panay says the Surface Pro 3, at 9.1mm (compared to 10.6mm for the Surface Pro 2), is the thinnest Intel Core product ever made. It weighs 800 grams, which is lighter than the Macbook Air, though Apple's product has a built-in keyboard, of course. The Surface Pro 3 has a 12-inch screen (up from 10.6" from the Surface Pro 2) and will work with a stylus. There's also support for USB 3.0 and Microsoft will offer new Type-covers, which will come in multiple variants.

Screen resolution for the Surface Pro 3 is 2,160 x 1,440. The Surface Pro 3 features an Intel Core i7 processor. It's also durable, as Panay dropped the device on the (carpeted) floor during the presentation and there was no damage to it. Microsoft will also offer a new kickstand that can go up to 150 degrees and stop anywhere on that spectrum. The Surface Pro 3 also has an overhauled trackpad that is larger and capable of responding better to two-finger controls, Panay says.

The Surface Pro 3 starts at $799 for the Intel Core i3 version. Core i5 and Core i7 versions will also be available, but pricing for those versions was not disclosed. Pricing was also not announced for the Surface Pro 3's new Type-covers and styluses.

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