Microsoft Stores – physical and online – are selling Intel 15-inch Surface Laptop 3 (Updated)

Surface Laptop 3 15
Surface Laptop 3 15 (Image credit: Daniel Rubino / Windows Central)

What you need to know

  • The Surface Laptop 3 for Business runs on an Intel chip, including the 15-inch version.
  • Anyone can purchase the Intel-powered version of the Surface Laptop 3 for Business.
  • The Intel version could have better battery life, better standby battery life, and improved performance.
  • Microsoft's physical stores (US) also have them in stock.

Update 10/23/19: We've recently confirmed that Microsoft's physical stores throughout the US (opens in new tab) are not only selling the Intel version of the Surface Laptop 3, but have them in stock. Anyone can walk in and request one for purchase.

A new member was added to the Surface Laptop family at the October Surface event, the 15-inch Surface Laptop 3. This larger Surface Laptop 3 shares many design elements with its smaller sibling, but comes in a larger form factor that's preferred by people who prioritize screen size over portability. One main difference between the 15-inch model and the 13-inch model is that the 15-inch model is powered by an AMD chip. This chip came with high expectations but disappointed in our review. Luckily, for people looking for another option, an Intel-powered 15-inch Surface Laptop 3 for Business (opens in new tab) exists, and you don't have to work for a business to purchase it.

In our testing period with the AMD-powered 15-inch Surface Laptop 3, there was a persistent battery drain. Leaving the lid closed overnight led to a 20 percent drop in battery. Geekbench tests for the device also came out lower than last year's Intel Core i5 13-inch Surface Laptop 2 and this year's Intel Core i5 Surface Pro 7.

The AMD-powered Surface Laptop 3 also lacks some driver support and optimization that appears in Intel devices. Additionally, it lacks WiFi- 6 and DDR4x RAM.

Without having a 15-inch Surface Laptop 3 for Business to test, we can't guarantee that performance would be better. But it's likely that an Intel-powered Surface Laptop 3 would at least have similar performance to a Surface Pro 7, which beat the AMD version of the Surface Laptop 3 in multiple ways. It's worth pointing out that there may be warranty differences between the Surface Laptop 3 for Business and the consumer-aimed Surface Laptop 3.

Sean Endicott
News Writer and apps editor

Sean Endicott brings nearly a decade of experience covering Microsoft and Windows news to Windows Central. He joined our team in 2017 as an app reviewer and now heads up our day-to-day news coverage. If you have a news tip or an app to review, hit him up at sean.endicott@futurenet.com (opens in new tab).

13 Comments
  • Couldn't figure out definitively from the MS Store website if they are offering the Student Discount for the Business Laptop...?
  • If you qualify for a student discount, it should appear in the Cart.
  • No, you can't get the student discount with this. I had one with the AMD 32GB model and then ordered the business version once my AMD got canceled. Once on the business site, it no longer mentioned the student discount.
  • Guess that figures. "Business" does not equal "Student"
  • You can buy business models at the Microsoft store. If you have one nearby, you can try presenting your student credentials there.
  • "The AMD-powered Surface Laptop 3 also lacks some driver support and optimization that appears in Intel devices. Additionally, it lacks WiFi- 6 and DDR4 RAM." What is this, an AMD hit piece? The AMD version doesn't "lack DDR4" and even has a 32GB DDR4 model.
  • Wait, what? got a link for the 32Gig version? It really doesn't help that AMD's own website for the Surface Laptop 3's tech Specs is quite... empty.
  • Oh, relax. You AMD fans are ridiculous. It has no DDR4x RAM, not DDR4, which it has. Intel versions have DDR4x. The 32GB model is not listed currently in the US, so not sure what your point is here.
  • I'm totally gobsmacked that Microsoft omitted DDR4 and WiFi 6 with the Ryzen version...😶😶
  • IIRC DDR4x (it has DDR4) is not supported by Ryzen 5/7 For Wi-Fi 6, Intel is the biggest maker of Wi-Fi 6 chips and my guess is there was some friction there. That's kind of the beauty of 10th Gen Intel. You get all of that "for free" with the platform.
  • Ah, re: DDR4 thanks Daniel that makes more sense lol I was getting really confused there - AMD's website is rather vague in terms of tech specs and wasn't able to find much - usually there are some press materials but got nothing. In terms of Wifi 6 couldn't they have a Broadcom Chipset something similiar to BCM4375 or there isn't one available for laptops? Been quite out of loop in terms of tech 😅 so gotta ask haha. True, given Intel is pretty much in every segment of the market which is finally being shaken up if the rumours about Intels CPU line turn to about to be true - i.e a Core i3 with 4 cores and 8 threads.
  • Broadcom is not widely used anymore and I thought they kind of pulled out of the laptop market. Not a 100% on that, but haven't seen many recently. The two I see most on all recent laptops are the Intel AX201 and Killer Wi-Fi 6, which is actually mostly Intel.
  • Good news. Compared to surface pro though, I think the price is too steep. unless they provide a free surface pen, dial and dock, and office 365 family plan for three years in the package for free