While the chances of a Surface Book 3 announcement this spring seems unlikely, Microsoft does have a tiny update launching today.
The Surface Book 2 13-inch with the new quad-core Intel Core i5 processor is now available for purchase. The configuration has 256GB of storage and 8GB of RAM for a price of $1,499. The older version, which only had a dual-core 7th Gen Intel Core i5 is still available but it is now discounted by $200 for $1,299 for the same configuration.
Evidence of a quad-core Intel Core i5 variant came forward at the beginning of March through Microsoft's own retail listings.
For reasons unknown, Microsoft launched the Surface Book 2 with only a dual-core Intel Core i5-7300U back in November 2017. The higher-end SKU with the Intel Core i7 did have the quad-core option making the distinction a bit odd.
This new Surface Book 2 ships with a Core i5-8350U, which has a 1.70 GHz base frequency, 3.60GHz Max Turbo, 6MB of cache, and up to a 25-watt TDP, which Microsoft usually leverages for maximum performance. The quad-core boost from the added cores significantly increases performance for heavier tasks making this a significant upgrade. Unlike the Core i7 model, however, this version does not include an NVIDIA GTX GPU and instead relies on Intel HD Graphics 620.
The Microsoft Store is now shipping the new Core i5 Surface Book 2 13-inch today and a quick store check shows that many physical stores have them in stock as well.
Thanks, Ved S., for the tip!
It's pricey, but it has a lot to offer.
The Surface Book 2 can handle just about anything you throw at it thanks to powerful hardware and a design that lets you use it as a notebook or tablet. Gaming, design, or standard tasks, the Book 2 won't complain.
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Daniel Rubino is the Editor-in-chief of Windows Central. He is also the head reviewer, podcast co-host, and analyst. He has been covering Microsoft since 2007, when this site was called WMExperts (and later Windows Phone Central). His interests include Windows, laptops, next-gen computing, and watches. He has been reviewing laptops since 2015 and is particularly fond of 2-in-1 convertibles, ARM processors, new form factors, and thin-and-light PCs. Before all this tech stuff, he worked on a Ph.D. in linguistics, watched people sleep (for medical purposes!), and ran the projectors at movie theaters because it was fun.