Should you buy a Surface Pro 5 (2020) in 2022?
Surface Pro (2017) and Surface Pro 6 have similar hardware
The Surface Pro 6, revealed at Microsoft's 2018 Surface event, is actually a pretty light refresh, coming now with 8th Gen Intel Core i5 and i7 CPU options and redone thermals inside, and a new black color finish (platinum is still available).
Both the Surface Pro (2017) and Surface Pro 6 have the same ports, including USB-A, Mini DisplayPort, Surface Connect, a 3.5 mm audio jack, and a microSD card reader, and you can get up to 16 GB of RAM and up to a 1 TB solid-state drive (SSD) in either.
The Surface Pro 6 actually has fewer configurations available — at least for now — starting with a Core i5 model, whereas last year's Surface Pro starts at a Core m3 CPU and goes up from there to Core i5 and Core i7 models.
If you already have a Surface Pro (2017) and don't absolutely need the black color finish found on the Surface Pro 6, you're probably fine sticking with the older model. Sure, the 7th Gen CPU doesn't match the 8th Gen options, but that difference in performance likely isn't worth the price of a whole new device. Likewise, the battery should be similar, with both models offering up all-day life.
Surface Pro (2017) has optional LTE availability
While there's no evident reason why the Surface Pro 6 won't one day receive LTE support, there are currently no models available. If you'd like to stay connected wherever you go using mobile data, the Surface Pro (2017) is your best bet. There are models available now with LTE connectivity.
Surface Pro (2017) and Surface Pro 6 have the same display
Whether you buy the 2017 Surface Pro or the latest Surface Pro 6, you're going to get Microsoft's 12.3-inch PixelSense touch display with a 2736x1824 resolution and 3:2 aspect ratio.
These displays have excellent color and respond perfectly to touch, plus they're fully compatible with the Surface Pen and Surface Dial for an outstanding inking experience. Above the display, both laptops include an IR camera for quick and secure logins through Windows Hello.
Surface Pro (2017) can be had for cheaper
Now that the Surface Pro 6 has been announced, Microsoft has dropped the price on most 2017 Surface Pro models. Configurations with a 7th Gen Intel Core m3 CPU, 128 GB SSD, and 4 GB of RAM start at $649, while more powerful options with Core i5 CPU, 256 GB SSD, and 8 GB of RAM are $999 (about $200 less than similar Surface Pro 6 models).
These prices do not include Type Cover or Surface Pen for the 2017 Surface Pro or Surface Pro 6; both still need to be purchased separately no matter which model Pro you choose.
The Surface Pro (2017) is still a great choice
The Surface Pro 6 has only seen a light refresh with a new black color option and 8th Gen Intel Core CPUs, so if you can live with a platinum finish and the performance from a 7th Gen Intel Core CPU, the Surface Pro (2017) will make a great laptop. Considering you should be able to find it a bit cheaper and with LTE connectivity options, it's still a great buy in 2019.
Last-gen Surface Pro still holds up.
The new Surface Pro 6 is here, but the 2017 Surface Pro offer similar performance, near-identical hardware, and is available now with LTE connectivity for those who need it. It should be a bit cheaper as well, making it even more attractive to those looking for a new 2-in-1 laptop in 2019.
New Surface Pro 6 with 8th Gen Intel Core CPUs.
The latest Surface Pro 6 now comes with quad-core 8th Gen Intel Core i5 or i7 CPU, improved thermals, and a new black color option.
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Cale Hunt is a Senior Editor at Windows Central. He focuses mainly on laptop reviews, news, and accessory coverage. He's been reviewing laptops and accessories full time since 2016, with hundreds of reviews published for Windows Central. He is an avid PC gamer and multi-platform user, and spends most of his time either tinkering with or writing about tech.
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