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Microsoft Surface Pro 8 leak teases release date and design upgrades

Microsoft Surface Pro 8 could have a Surface Pro X-like design
(Image credit: Microsoft)

We were expecting the Microsoft Surface Pro 8 to launch around October 2020, but it would appear the coronavirus pandemic may have shaken up Microsoft’s cadence for its Surface device releases. 

But according to WindowsLatest’s sources that are familiar with Microsoft's Surface development, the Surface Pro 8 is still coming, it’s just that we may have to wait for next Fall.

Microsoft was seemingly concentrating on the launch of the Xbox Series X last Fall, and the Surface Duo was the Surface device to steal the headlines last year. And combined with disruption to hardware supply chains caused by the coronavirus pandemic, it’s not a huge surprise that the Surface Pro 8 didn’t make its debut in 2020. 

However, we’d have expected it see it at the start of 2021 or perhaps sometime in the Spring. But instead, Microsoft came out with the business-focused Surface Pro 7+, basically a Surface Pro 7 but with the latest Intel Tiger Lake chips. 

That refresh gave the Surface Pro 7 a reasonable boost in processor power and integrated graphics performance. But it was hardly a major upgrade, let alone a refresh of the Surface Pro design, which is getting a little long in the tooth. 

With the Surface Pro 8, we’d expect to see some refinement in the design. We'd like to see the narrow bezels and sleek aesthetic of the Surface Pro X, but with space in the chassis to hold higher performance Intel processors. 

If the Surface Pro 8 isn’t due for another eight months or so, then we can expect it to come with Intel's next-generation Alder Lake laptop CPUs, which we’d expect to make their debut around September or October time. We’d also expect the Surface Pro 8 to come with boosted specs in terms of RAM and storage, potentially up to 32GB of RAM and 2TB of SSD space. 

Interestingly, WindowsLatest’s report noted that the Microsoft Surface Laptop 4, which is also seemingly delayed, will launch around April. We’d expect that to be a refreshed and hopefully a refined version of the Surface Laptop 3, likely with improved Intel and AMD laptops CPUs. 

With Apple having raised the bar with the MacBook Air with M1 and the latest iPad Air, Microsoft will need to pull something special out of the bag with its next wave of Surface devices. 

Roland Moore-Colyer

Roland Moore-Colyer is U.K. Editor at Tom’s Guide with a focus on news, features and opinion articles. He often writes about gaming, phones, laptops and other bits of hardware; he’s also got an interest in cars. When not at his desk Roland can be found wandering around London, often with a look of curiosity on his face. 

  • Tanuki Soba
    The pen technology has always been the dealbreaker for me. The IAF (Initial Activation Force) is too high, compared to the Apple Pencil and Cintiq pens.