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Apr 08, 2017 10:22 AM EDT

The Surface Book 2 is not arriving soon but when it does at the latter part of the year, it may bring the power of the Kaby Lake quad-core processor. Better battery solutions are also expected to handle the power wattage requirements with NVIDIA GTX 10 GPU onboard. The upgraded "ultimate laptop" may not only for artists who love inking but those who play games as well.

The Surface Book 2 will need to have a serious upgrade in power, which was deemed inadequate in the current iteration. Microsoft pitched the "ultimate laptop" stressing build quality, mobility and an impressive array of powerful internals. The Redmond-based company even showcased the Adobe CC and a demo of the "Gears of War Ultimate Edition" just to highlight the device's graphical prowess.

However, the Surface Book was not powerful enough to handle big workloads with its 6th generation Skylake-chips. These tasks include large video editing projects, live broadcasting and heavy multitasking, Windows Central reported. Hence, an upgrade to the 7th generation Kaby Lake chips is highly anticipated in the Surface Book 2.

In theory, the Kaby Lake chips offer minimal improvement but a quad-core, as opposed to a dual-core, will deliver a big boost in power. Moreover, the Kaby Lake has a thermal envelope of 95 Watts, which will not consume much power with increased performance. The Intel chips also offer native support for faster USB 3.1 Type-C and Thunderbolt 3 specifications.

An updated discrete GPU options are also expected in the Surface Book 2 and not limited to NVIDIA graphic chips from the Maxwell architecture. A NVIDIA GeForce GTX 10 graphics card like the GTX 1050 will bring the DirectX 12 support. This will make the Surface Book 2 also attractive to gamers who may want to make full use of the latest API on a rotating laptop screen, Tech Radar reported.

The screen resolution should also match the upgraded internals meaning the use of the now standard 4K at 3840x2160 ppi. The upgraded resolution will align well with Kaby lake chips, which will bring marked improvements in 4K playback and 3D graphics. With the new CPU and GPU enhancements, the power wattage requirements will soar so a new and better battery solutions are necessary for the Surface Book 2.

The current model is already having some battery issues, particularly on the detachable tablet with only 4 hours battery life. The main base fares better at 8 hours, but a 4K video can easily compromise it. The New Performance Base-enhanced i7 variant actually resolves the tablet battery issue but it is not readily accessible given its steep premium at the high end.

As to pricing of the Surface Book 2, an entry level of $1,299 seems a logical price point, Given the upgraded internals, the upcoming hybrid 2-in-1 laptop will be more expensive than its predecessor. The high premium can be justified if the upgraded device is more than an artist's inking device but a good gaming laptop as well.

As to when the Surface Book 2 will arrive, ZDNet Mary Jo Foley discounted a Spring unveiling based on what her sources have revealed. The delay is caused by snags in the production of the Kaby Lake, which remains unconfirmed by either Microsoft or Intel.The device may likely arrive at the latter part of 2017 to coincide with the second major update of Windows 10. 

Follows Surface Book 2, Surface Book, Microsoft, windows 10 Creators Update, Surface Book 2 Launch, Surface Book 2 Pricing, Intel Kaby Lake Chips
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