Microsoft unveils new smartphones, tablet and fitness tracker
06 Oct 2015 - 18:17
Microsoft Corp unveiled on Tuesday its first laptop, a line of Lumia smartphones, a new Surface Pro tablet and an updated version of its wearable fitness tracker, Microsoft Band, all running on Windows 10, its latest operating system.
Windows 10, launched in July, is part of Microsoft's push to win a bigger share of the market for tablets and smartphones now dominated by Apple Inc and South Korea's Samsung Electronics Co Ltd.
Microsoft said the laptop, the Surface Book, will start at $1,499 and is twice as fast as Apple's MacBook Pro. It will be available from Oct. 26, with preorders starting on Wednesday.
The laptop has a 13.5-inch display with 267 pixels per inch and features a track pad made of glass.
Microsoft, whose shares were up 0.9 percent at $47.06 in late morning trading, said there were now 110 million devices running Windows 10.
The company unveiled three phones at an event in New York. The Lumia 950 and 950XL will have starting prices of $549 and $649 respectively when they go on sale in November, while the Lumia 550 will cost $139 when it becomes available in December.
The Lumia 950 includes a 5.2-inch display and a hexacore processor, while the larger Lumia 950 XL has a 5.7-inch display with an octacore chip. The specs on the budget 550 had not been released as the event continued.
The new Surface Pro 4 tablet - a larger but thinner and lighter version of the Surface Pro 3 - is priced at $899 and will be available from Oct. 26 with pre-orders starting on Wednesday.
Launched nearly a year and a half after its predecessor, the Surface Pro 4 features a 12.3-inch screen with 267 pixels per inch. It runs on 6th-generation Intel Core processor and has 16GB of RAM and 1TBB storage.
Surface Pro 4 is 50 percent faster than Apple's MacBook Air, Panos Panay, the corporate vice president for Surface Computing at Microsoft, said at the event.
Microsoft also said its new tablet and smartphones will come with Windows Hello, an automatic biometric sign-in option introduced earlier this year.
The feature allows users to scan their face, iris or fingerprints to verify their identity and give them access to Windows phones, laptops and personal computers.
Microsoft also introduced a Surface Pen, which has year-long battery life, 1,024 pressure points and comes in five colors with inter-changeable pen tips.
The 950 and 950XL handsets feature a 20-megapixel rear camera, have up to 32GB of storage, 4K video and use liquid cooling technology. Microsoft said storage on the phones could be extended to up to 2 terabytes using a memory card.
The Microsoft Band 2, which allows users to monitor their fitness and exercise regime, will be priced at $249 when it becomes available on Oct. 30.
Unlike its predecessor, Microsoft's entry product in the wearable technology market a year ago, the new Band has a curved display, which uses the Corning Gorilla glass 3, and has a barometer sensor to track elevation.