Rumored budget Surface may pack Intel Pentium processors

Microsoft is widely rumored to be cooking up a budget Surface tablet meant to compete with Apple's iPad. Now, we may have a clue as to how the company will hit its reported $400 entry point: Intel's Pentium processors.

German blog reports that the budget Surface will pack Intel's Pentium Silver N5000 chip on the low end, with options for either a Pentium Gold 4410Y or Pentium Gold 4415Y chip for those willing to shell out a little more cash. Pentium chips would mean the device will be substantially less powerful than its Core i5 and i7-powered brethren, but they're also much cheaper, allowing Microsoft to keep costs low while still providing enough performance for tasks like browsing the web and working with Microsoft Office.

Initial rumors of a low-cost Surface device surfaced earlier this year, pointing toward a device with a 10-inch screen, USB-C connectivity, and a budget price tag. An LTE option is also said to be on the table, and the design will be slightly different with rounded corners similar to the iPad.

Microsoft has previously attempted to capture the market for a budget Surface device, releasing the Surface 3 in 2015. However, there's been no replacement device since, leaving only the Surface Pro lineup for anyone looking to pick up a Microsoft tablet. There's no indication yet of when we may see the rumored Surface launch, but it did clear the FCC earlier this week, so it may not be too far off.

Dan Thorp-Lancaster

Dan Thorp-Lancaster is the former Editor-in-Chief of Windows Central. He began working with Windows Central, Android Central, and iMore as a news writer in 2014 and is obsessed with tech of all sorts. You can follow Dan on Twitter @DthorpL and Instagram @heyitsdtl