One Cool Thing: Microsoft's Surface Pro 7+ for Business
I’m John Burek.. This is Matt Buzzi, my colleague. We’re here to show you some cool tech from around PC Labs and Matt. What do you have for us today? I understand it is a Surface.. Lo es. The Microsoft Surface, Pro 7 Plus for Business.. It looks much like the Microsoft Surface. Pro 7, which came out in 2019, hasn’t, seen an update, since that is actually still the most recent model of the Microsoft Surface Pro, and this is updated with a couple of component differences and a couple of professional focused features., So the Surface Pro 7, the version That this is based on came out in 2019 and is a detachable Windows. Tablet. There really hasn’t been a major release of the Surface Pro 7 at that size. Desde entonces. There’s been the Surface, Go the smaller version. There’ve been Surface laptops and Surface books that have been updated, so what’s the big update that happened here You said components. UH, it seems to be Tiger Lake. Sí, we have made the jump from 10th gen to 11th gen Tiger Lake, so it adds a little pep to the step. Es, not as we’ve seen pretty much across any laptop line that has jumped from one to the other, not a huge difference, not a giant Leap in performance, but a nice incremental boost for something that we like as a product that came out now a couple of years ago, since they haven’t released a new Surface Pro 8 or a new edition of it.
Doing this to kind of refresh the components while they maybe work on what might be a bigger redesign might not be a bigger redesign while they work on that., Just adding newer components to increase the performance. A little bit make it a little more relevant to tasks that you might need to do in 2021, so that we don’t have to say quotyeah this thing’s two years old, Ahora., It’s still good., The design is good.. We like it, but the components are old.quot. Now you can get the 11th gen Tiger Lake CPUs in it and we can talk more about the business features, but that performance increase is definitely a big part of the draw here, because the product was getting a little bit long in the tooth. 2019 wasn’t. That long ago, but when you talk about buying a new computer, I don’t know if you necessarily want to go for one that’s, two years, Viejo. Correcto, Understood. Yeah., I mean looking at it briefly, then maybe you can hold up the screen, so we can take a Peek at it, but they haven’t redesigned any major portion of it and looking at the bezels around the around the actual panel, it looks you know a couple of years on things are starting to get to the point where you have almost no bezels around the panels Of some of the flagship laptops. That one still has some some pretty meaty borders around it. Yeah.. So that was a complaint.
We had. – And you know, an aesthetic and relatively minor complaint, but a complaint we had with the original Pro 7 that the bezels were pretty thick.. As you said, a lot of the ultra portables and competing tablets. These days have almost no bezel which allows you both to get a bigger screen in the same size chassis, but it also looks nicer.. It looks a little more modern.. These big, thick bezels, look kind of like old monitors, old laptops.. It just kind of brings to mind those kind of dated systems that look like they’re from more than two years ago, especially when it’s in tablet mode.. You know there’s so much screen wasted on these big black borders.. So the Surface Pro X, launched alongside the the Surface Pro 7 originally and that kind of showed us a glimpse of what the product could look like in the future. It’s thinner, the bezels are slimmer, but it has its own drawbacks as a result. It’s a whole Different different kettle of fish, but that’s the design, the visual that we would look … like it to look like if it could in the future. Right now they kept the same design. The thick bezels. It’s fine. It works., But you could get a bigger screen and maybe a little bit of a slimmer system if you got rid of those bezels. Right Yeah., Because with the Pro X you know, you’ve got a Qualcomm chip in there as opposed to Intel.
You’re running on lower power, you’re running on a whole different platform.. So you know you’ve got a sort of different set of thermal sort of parameters, you’re working with in the design of it., Y, to be honest I mean you could tell me since you’ve used the device you know more than I have, but actually having a place To put your thumbs in tablet mode, I guess on the bezels is not necessarily a bad thing right I mean, because you need a place to swipe in from you need. Sabes, a place that could grip without activating something in Windows. Yeah., Es, es. Bien. Once you to detach it. And exactly as you said exactly, you can hold it by the edges so that you’re not you’re, not gripping the screen. Itself. It works better.. I think in tablet mode you can get away with it. In laptop mode. You might notice it more because it’s sitting you’re just staring at it. But yeah I mean it’s it’s still fine., And it also does allow, as you were saying, it allows the the touch pad the the keyboard sorry to to snap to the bottom here for security.. Por lo tanto, rather than covering the screen you’re only covering the bezel., So I guess that’s, not the worst thing in the world. Correcto. And the way it snaps up like that. That sort of inclines the keyboard portion for typing, as I recall, from using … the last time.
I used one of these.. It makes it a little more comfortable. Yeah.. All that stuff is still good. It’s as useful on the lap as it was previously, which is to say serviceable, but not ideal.. I think in a lot of cases, you’d like prefer a a laptop that has a hard wider stance, so you don’t have to keep your legs close together and the keyboard doesn’t flop around, but using it on your lap, isn’t, really the ideal use case for me.. I think a coffee table or actual desk – or you know anywhere you’re, making a pit stop that has an actual surface to use, probably a little bit preferable to your lap., But it’s functional enough in your lap. Entiendo. So in terms of …, so it’s technically Called the Microsoft Surface, Pro 7 Plus for Business., So the quotfor Businessquot portion. allí, obviously is the big difference maker here., So we’ve got a new CPU, la GPU. You know part of the CPU. There is the Iris Xe, which I believe is new with this generation., And what else are we seeing that has changed? I believe we discussed this a little bit beforehand and you’d mentioned there’s a LTE option for the machine and also encrypted SSD.. Sí, so there’s a there’s, a LTE option, which is not the first time we’ve seen on our Surface. There actually was the Surface Pro with LTE Advanced was an addition of this. They put out in the past.
Now the Surface Pro 7. Has this business focused model that you can put a SIM card in., You can get a plan. Extra good if your employer will pay for it if it’s for work pay for your coverage. If you’re away from the WiFi. That obviously makes this much more useful on the go on a train whatever it is that you’re, using once you start traveling more again. That can have this actually be a functional work, computer on the go., So that’s a pretty cool addition again, not the first time. We’Ve seen it, but you know it’s, always a welcome option for the people who need it.. The SSD, como usted mencionó, is actually removable, which is kind of a big deal on a product like this. That doesn’t happen very often.. Even some laptops make it a little difficult to do. So having the option to upgrade or maintain or swap whatever it is, is useful for business users., Not that they might want to do it themselves, but it lets IT departments kind of make maintain their fleet if They use a lot of these devices for their employees. And if something goes wrong with the drive they don’t have to buy, an entire new device. Got it., So you can just reach it via a hatch or something of that sort. On the back of the machine or how does the.. So it’s actually right under the kickstand, which is also where the SIM card slot is.
, So this door right, Aquí., Ah yeah., So pretty pretty straightforward.. I should mention that it’s not it’s, not the normal m.2 SSD. Es, the m.2 2230., So you’re, not looking at the stick of gum, shaped SSD that you might know from PCs. If any of you are DIY, desktop people. Es, not one of those. Es, a sort of modular square shaped SSE that slots right into the back. Sí. You’re, probably not going to find those in mass on Amazon or at your local electronics store. Quite as much as you would a normal SSD., They are out, there might be a little bit more friendly for IT. Departments to shop for than individual users. Entiendo. Yeah., The you know we were discussing this before and I guess there’s different lengths of m.2 SSD and the typical one that you see the gum stick or the 80 Milímetro. But this is a 30 Milímetro. And looking around there isn’t nearly the range of capacities available for the 30 millimeter m.2 SSDs it seems.. Así que esto es, como dijiste, probably more of a you know: a fleet maintenance slash, Sabes, sort of en masse upgrade type of solution as opposed to quothey. I want to stick a four terabyte SSD in this thing.quot. You know you won’t find that m.2 module size because of the lack of space, and you know the ability to put more chips on it. así que., But it looks like you could do it yourself, Aunque, if it came down to it.
Yeah., So that’s still better than no SSD change option, Yo diría que. Sí. No, we had it., We had an instance. I know of someone on our team. Had a a Surface Book which had a SSD failure – and you know the way that thing was constructed was you know there was no way to get inside the case, and you know sort of doing a data recovery. Tear apart type of thing would have been a four figure operation. So actually being able to access. The SSD is a big deal. You know from a …, you know if you’re deploying hundreds of these things. So that’s a big that’s, un …. You know a big change. And also I have in my notes here that there’s TPM support Yes.. So this has got the whole sort of you know: Negocio, security and manageability aspect. You know sort of baked into it. Yeah.. I would say it does the name …. The quotfor Businessquot part of the name is not just lip service.. I think those are … between the LTE, the SSD TPM. That’s, pretty useful for actual business users., Bastante justo. In terms of the performance that you’ve seen on it. So far you mentioned when we were talking before that it has 16 gigs of RAM, which seems to me, como usted sabe, pretty meaty for a standalone two in one detachable tablet.. How did you find it performed versus the 10th gen Yes., Así que hay? A number of configuration options.
– You can get with an I 5, Me 7 eight gigs of RAM 16 gigs of RAM and also various SSD sizes., el 16 gig version between the new processor and the increased … ’cause the Service Pro 7. We reviewed only had eight gigs of RAM …, so it definitely lagged behind its competitors at the time. Bumping up the processor and doubling the RAM in this unit. Actually has it performing not quite in line but much much closer to 13 inch laptops just not tablets. Full on convertible two in ones like the Dell XPS 13, the HP Spectre – x360.. Those are some top of the line sort of premium two in ones, and this really wasn’t too far behind the pack.. The multimedia test even was pretty close.. It actually had the highest in the bench score of the bunch, which I found a little bit surprising, but I mean it has the parts it has the RAM. It can hang in there for the everyday sort of multitasking. You’ve got a bunch of tabs open. You have a bunch of applications, open different group chats and things it’s, not it’s, not laggy.. I mean this is … it’s close to a full on laptop., That’s, sort of always been the appeal of the Surface. It’s more like a tablet that … a tablet that can also … a laptop that could also be a tablet kind of more than it is The other way around so long as you get the keyboard which is still sold separately because otherwise it’s definitely just a tablet.
Yeah after I was going to ask, is it still the same policy as ever, where the type cover is an additional purchase? You know of … Sí. Yeah and an expensive one. Es, no barato, so that’s unfortunate, but I guess that would probably be baked into the cost if it was included. De todos modos., Right., That’s, true., So very cool.. So this is the Surface Pro 7.. Disculpa, the Surface Pro 7 Plus for Business., The SKU that we looked at was, Creo que sí, towards the top end of the range. Since it was I 7 16 gigs and I don’t know what the SSD capacity was, but I’m assuming it was …. Ours was. Me 5.. Oh, it was I 5 Okay., My mistake., So I 5 m.2 SSD at I’m, not sure which capacity and Iris xE graphics. Yeah.. Ours was 1500 as tested for that which is getting a little expensive.. I think that’s about a 100 o 150 more than the unit we tested of the original Surface Pro 7.. So the additional RAM – and I think more likely a bunch of those business features actually increased that cost a fair amount. So it’s getting into a little bit of a mid range price point to the point where you might consider getting a laptop instead, because at a Certain point you’re – probably going for this ’cause it’s a little cheaper than a full fledged laptop.. So you start to get away from that a little bit in the mid thousand price range there I don’t know.
. I don’t know how different people feel about that.. Some might be doing it for the form factor, specifically so the price isn’t as much of a factor., But some people might view it as quotI’m, making a compromise on price and a little bit on performance to get that cool form. Factor.Quot. So it’s up to your preferences, Supongo, but the performance isn’t as diminished as you might think., Así que eso es … Correcto. That’s, the advantage of this model. That’s. The whole thing with any Windows tablet is all the all the hardware and the thermal is lost. That had happen behind the screen.. You don’t have sort of the ability to offload like the battery and other components underneath the keyboard., So you sort of have to work with half a laptop so to speak in terms of designing the internals.. So yeah I mean it’s an interesting trade off right Because you have to really want the two in one aspect of it because with the same money you could get a you know, a mid range Think Pad. Sabes, with a I mean everybody’s opinions on keyboards are different, pero, generally speaking, you know you’re going to have more travel and more clickiness on a say, a Think, Pad keyboard. You know in the mid 1500 Para 2000 range than you will on a type cover, which you know as good as it may be. Sabes, is still you know a a thin strip.
You know that you’re typing on., Sí. Es, probably the best one of these but that’s, still that’s still better. That’s, still worse than most laptop keyboards at the end of the day. Right Yeah.. I know Lenovo had one.. They had that an X1 tablet keyboard, which actually was you know, Sabes, a tear off keyboard, which was Think Pad …, The Think Pad keyboard., But they stopped making that.. Although now that I think about it, I mean there haven’t been very many business competitors for a two in one tablet. Apart from I guess, Lenovo rolled out at CES that Think Pad detachable X12. Yeah., I may be getting too …. We did like that.. That looks like the closest competitor to come out in the last year or so so we’ll see when we run the full review of that how it stacks up to this. Yeah totally.. We got our hands on, I think one of them, but we didn’t get to actually test it.. It was a pre production, modelo., So great., So wrapping up the Surface Pro 7 Plus for Business. Matt’s, putting it through its benchmarks and we’ll have a full deep review up on PCMag as well. You know soon with all the numbers and our score. And thank you for watching. mate. Thank you for your time with the Surface, and we will see you next time on quotOne Cool Thing.