Microsoft Surface Pro 3 family gets a new member

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Amidst all the rumours of a Surface Pro 4 launch, Microsoft has quietly introduced a new mid-level Surface Pro 3 tablet powered by the almighty Intel Core i7 processor.

Meant for those who intend to own a powerful tablet, but are OK with less storage, the new Surface Pro 3 packs a 1.7GHz Intel Core i7 processor, 8GB of RAM and just 128GB of storage. For this you will need to shell out $1,299. The price is exactly the same as that of a Surface Pro 3 with i5 1.9GHz dual-core chip, 8GB of RAM and 256GB of storage.

If you are looking for more storage with i7 horsepower, you will have to shell out $1,549 for 256GB Surface Pro 3 or $1,749 for a 512GB variant.

The inclusion of Intel Core i7 at this price point seems to be a way for Microsoft to appeal to a segment of people that are looking for a more powerful tablet, but are not willing to shell out quite a lot of money for the top of the range Surface Pro 3 tabs.

One thing that caught our eye was the fact that though Microsoft has introduced a comparatively low-priced i7 variant, the tablet does run at a slower frequency than the i5. However, the new i7 Surface Pro 3 can can “Turbo Boost” to 3.3GHz, which is better to the i5 variant that has a “Turbo Boost” of just 2.9GHz.

Further, on the graphics front, the i7 features Intel’s HD 5000 integrated graphics processor, which is definitely better than the HD 4400 built into the i5.

So what about Surface Pro 4

The introduction of a new Surface Pro 3 variant could mean two things. First – the company is either emptying out its i7, RAM and storage inventory by shipping out a new model at a lower price than the top of the range i7 models so as to make room for the Surface Pro 4 with new Intel chips; or second – the company is not going to release Surface Pro 4 anytime soon and wants to continue cashing-in on Surface Pro 3 success.

What’s your take on this? Do let us know in the comments section.