The front 5MP AF supports Windows Hello for fast facial recognition and log-in.
Keyboard, Touchpad and Slim Pen
As usual (with all Surface Pros) you have to add an eye-watering $429.95 to add the Alcantara keyboard and pen. I have given up questioning Microsoft’s rationale so let’s just say that most will buy the keyboard and some with buy both.
The keyboard looks like a Surface Pro board (it won’t fit), but it has a reduced 1mm throw and 30g actuation, so it’s a harder keyboard to use. It is not bad, but the Surface Pro keyboard is better.
The Pen is flattened and can inductively charge in the keyboard caddy or via USB-C caddy (only supplied if you buy the pen separately). It has 4,096 levels of pressure sensing, tilt sensing, excellent latency, good palm rejection, and has a rated precision of 0.1mm.
Battery – PASSable
It has a 38.23Wh (nominal) battery and a 60W charger (15V/4A). In theory, this means fast charging. Microsoft claims 80% in an hour and a full battery in under two – we concur.
Microsoft claim up to 13 hours typical life – we have no idea what that means.
Tests (we could not run many as the test software is not compatible)
- 1080p video loop, 50% screen brightness, aeroplane mode – 7 hours
- Typical office use – emails, Wi-Fi and Office – 9 hours
- Endurance mode – battery optimised 11:45
It is not a full day battery. However, you can use a USB-C 45W charger or a larger (10,000+mAh) USB-C PD Power bank, so this earns more points.
iFixit’s teardown is here, and it gets an excellent 6/10 repairability.
GadgetGuy’s take – Microsoft Surface Pro X is good in parts
What is to like – good battery, screen, portability. For the right person, it is perfect.
What is not to like – performance, compatibility and price many knock this out of contention.
It is a damned big phone – well under the skin, and that is a good thing. It portends Microsoft’s vision for the future and portability.
But as a phone, it has limitations that Windows users need to know. I suspect we are going to see Intel’s Project Athena ultra-light ultra-books dominate this space – call it another ARMs race.
Me – I love the screen size, and it beats the 10-inch Surface Go that I use for travel. I have one gripe – lack of software WOA VPN support makes this less secure. You can use an external VPN box like InvizBox Go, but that is something extra to carry and power (micro-USB).
Would I buy it? Probably not as I use too many things and software that the Surface Pro range provides – it is my desktop replacement. And so far, I have not needed always-on LTE.