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Will Microsoft be able to market the Surface Pro 3 as a laptop?

Bhekimpi Mhlanga, Kapitall: Microsoft's new tablet came out this week. Could the sleek new hardware turn up the heat on Apple's Macbooks? 

Yesterday Microsoft (MSFT) unveiled the latest iteration of its Surface Pro line. 

Touted as “the tablet that can replace your laptop”, the surface is thinner, lighter and larger then ever. At 9.1 mm thick and weighing 800 grams the surface boasts a 12” display with a 3:2 aspect ratio. The device is powered by 4th generation Intel Corp. (INTC) processors (i3,i5,i7), giving it the same processing power as most high-end laptops and ultrabooks.

Read more from Kapitall: Why the Brazilian stock market might root against their own team​

Microsoft has positioned the Surface Pro 3 to compete against Apple’s (AAPL) MacBook Air, claiming on its website that the surface is 30 percent thinner than the 11”Air. The price tags are also comparable with the Surface staring at $799 and compared to the Air’s $899. This price however does not include the Type Cover ($129.99). 

Microsoft stock surged with the news of the unveiling. This is perhaps a sign of approval of Microsoft’s decision to shift the Surface’s marketing focus away from tablets – where it has struggled – toward the market for laptops.

There are skeptics though, including tech writers at The Guardian who question whether the portability of a tablet is undermined by also having to carry a keyboard around with it.

Apple investors didn’t seem too perturbed by Microsoft’s launch with the share price at Apple mostly unmoved. Only time will tell how the Surface Pro 3 will stack up against the MacBook Air and whether or not it can bring back Microsoft's “cool”.

Click on the interactive chart to view data over time. 

1. Microsoft Corporation (MSFT): Develops, licenses, and supports a range of software products and services for various computing devices worldwide. Market cap at $330.91B, most recent closing price at $40.35.

 

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