Don’t Buy a Surface Pro Until You Read This

don't buy a surface pro until you read this

Don’t Buy a Surface Pro Until You Read This

Key Points

  • The Surface Pro 9 has a starting price of $999 and offers limited diversity in terms of memory variants and processor configurations.
  • Key features of the Surface Pro 9 include a 13-inch PixelSense touchscreen display, an array of connectivity options, and a built-in kickstand.
  • The Surface Pro 9 has a sleek and lightweight design, with various color options available.
  • The Surface Pro 9 has a high-resolution display, but its brightness and bezels may not be as impressive as some competitors.

The Surface Pro range from Microsoft has had tremendous success since its initial launch way back in 2012. Now that the latest iteration, the Surface Pro 9, is upon us, we’re revealing all its details and asking if it is really worth buying.

You can call it a laptop, or you can call it a tablet. Either way, the Surface Pro boasts the best of both worlds. But the biggest question is if it is worth the high price tag, and how it stacks up against competing brands like Apple or Samsung.

In this article, we’ll cover everything, from performance details and compatibility issues to budgetary constraints. Let’s dive in!

Release Date And Price

Microsoft launched the impressive Surface Pro 9 on October 12, 2022, capturing the attention of tech enthusiasts worldwide. With an MSRP starting at $999, it is competitive with laptops and tablets like the iPad Pro or the MacBook Air. 

If you opt for a decked-out version with maximum specs, expect to pay closer to $2500. 

Different Models 

Surface Pro 9 doesn’t offer much in terms of diversity. There are only a few memory variants of this model: 8GB, 16GB, or 32GB, with a slight price difference between each configuration.

The good news is that a cellular variant of Surface Pro 9 also comes with 5G connectivity. This 5G model brings a Microsoft SQ3 processor into play. This power-efficient model, based on the Qualcomm Snapdragon 8cx Gen3 family of processors, amps up the battery life to 19.5 hours.

The biggest price differences are going to be dependent on which processor configuration you opt for. The Intel Core i5 models are the cheapest, at around $1000.

At the upper end of the price range, the Intel Core i7 models will run you over $2000. And sitting squarely in the middle is the SQ3 model, which runs around $1500.

Microsoft Surface Pro 9 - i5 Model
  • 12th Gen Intel® Core™ i5-1245U processor
  • Memory options: 8GB, 16GB, 32GB (LPDDR5 RAM)
  • Storage: Removable SSD options: 128GB, 256GB, 512GB, 1TB
  • 13-inch PixelSense™ Flow Display with a resolution of 2880 X 1920 (267 PPI)
  • Battery life: Up to 15.5 hours of typical device usage
  • Intel® Iris® Xe graphics

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08/29/2023 05:45 pm GMT


The Microsoft Surface Pro 9 boasts an array of impressive features. Chief among these is its 13-inch PixelSense touchscreen display, which offers vibrant colors, razor-sharp resolution, and the high responsiveness needed for intricate touch gestures. Perfect for those high-stakes presentations or weekend movie binges. 

The hardware suite is completed with an array of connectivity options, including USB-C, WiFi 6E, and Bluetooth. These offer the flexibility of connecting a multitude of peripherals, ranging from high-speed external storage devices to cutting-edge accessories.

Microsoft Surface Pro 9 - i7 Model
  • 12th Gen Intel® Core™ i7-1265U processor
  • Memory options: 8GB, 16GB, 32GB (LPDDR5 RAM)
  • Storage: Removable SSD options: 128GB, 256GB, 512GB, 1TB
  • 13-inch PixelSense™ Flow Display with a resolution of 2880 X 1920 (267 PPI)
  • Battery life: Up to 15.5 hours of typical device usage
  • Intel® Iris® Xe graphics
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08/30/2023 01:05 am GMT

Another standout characteristic is the kickstand, a seemingly simple feature that makes a significant impact on user experience.

Using this kickstand, you can adjust the device to your ideal viewing angle, whether you’re working at a desk or catching up on a favorite show on the go.

Sure, you could have just bought a case with this capability, but it’s exciting to see it built right into the device.


Display13.5-Inch Pixel Sense
Resolution2880 x 1920 (267 PPI)
Processor12th Gen Core i5, i7, or SQ3
MemoryUp to 32GB
StorageUp to 1TB
GraphicsIntel Iris Xe Graphics (Integrated)
Operating SystemWindows 11
Battery LifeUp to 19 hours

Surface Pro 9: Review

Microsoft has been honing its craft for over a decade with this tablet. The first-ever model launched to minimal fanfare in 2012. It had its fair share of problems, from cooling issues to random shutdowns.

After ironing out the most pressing bugs and design flaws, the Surface Pro series really started to gain some traction. Thanks to its laptop-like stance, it proved that it is great for getting some work done.

At the same time, its tablet-esque portability makes it feel right at home scrolling through social media on the couch. Microsoft created a few dozen different models after the original Surface Pro.

For laptop lovers, you have the Surface Laptop series, along with the Surface Studio and the Surface Book. The company is dedicated to the business market, evidenced by the Surface Hub, a whiteboard device for the office.

Now that we’ve reached the latest generation of the device, the Surface Pro 9, we get to enjoy the latest features and design elements, together with the latest operating system, Windows 11. There are still some complaints about the Surface Pro here and there. But overall, this generation is a solid improvement all around.

surface pro 7 vs surface pro x
The Surface Pro’s kickstand lets you prop it up anywhere so you can work or play in laptop mode.



Let’s delve into the remarkable design of the Microsoft Surface Pro 9. One noticeable change is the removal of the headphone jack, which may initially seem unnecessary. 

However, wired headphones have become less commonplace in an era where wireless audio reigns supreme. With the advent of advanced wireless earbuds, it is easier than ever to ditch the cable and pair via Bluetooth.

Apple was the first to do it back when they launched the iPhone 7. Now that Microsoft is following suit, we can see Apple was right all along.

Moving beyond the absence of the headphone jack, the Surface Pro 9 showcases a sleek and refined design that has been commonplace across the entire Surface lineup. 

The whole device is remarkably thin and lightweight, weighing under two pounds. With the addition of the signature keyboard and slim pen 2, the weight reaches a modest two-and-a-half pounds. 

Adding a touch of personalization to the Surface Pro 9, Microsoft offers various color options to suit your taste. The Intel version comes in silver, blue, green, and black, with the blue variant showcasing a striking appeal. 

On the other hand, the SQ3 version is available in sleek silver, meaning you’ll have to mix and match with keyboards and accessories if you want to show any unique personality or style.


Continuing the legacy of the Surface Pro 8, the Surface Pro 9 retains many aspects of its predecessor’s design. The standout feature is its remarkable display, boasting a 10-point multi-touch 2880 x 1920p resolution and a dynamic refresh rate of up to 120hz.

This is impressive, but compared to the iPad Pro’s 2048 x 2732 pixels resolution, it is not quite as crisp.

As for brightness, you’re looking at 450 nits maximum. This is great in laptop terms, which usually come at 200 to 500 nits. But compared to your typical smartphone, it is significantly less bright. Still, it is more than enough for your average office or indoor space, and it is easy to see even in a sunny room.

Another thing that is a little surprising to see in such a new device is the thick bezels. Despite maintaining the broad bezels seen on the Surface Pro 8, these bezels serve a purpose.

Hiding behind the bezel, you’ll find a top-notch 1080p front-facing camera, with facial recognition for login. Compared to the 720p cameras found on your average laptop, this is a nice upgrade.

Internal Thermal System

This 2-in-1 laptop employs an innovative internal thermal system that works effectively to control the heat and ensure the smooth operation of the laptop. It dissipates heat from the device’s components by combining passive and active cooling techniques. 

To provide effective cooling and prevent overheating, the system uses thermal materials and heat pipes that are arranged strategically to move heat away from vulnerable locations. Since the Surface Pro’s CPU, SSD, and RAM are all designed to be as energy efficient as possible, they generate less heat.


Microsoft calls Surface Pro 9’s keyboard “The Surface Pro Type Cover.” It is a removable keyboard designed to enhance the device’s adaptability.

The Type Cover magnetically snaps onto the device, making typing pleasant and responsive. When you feel like going full-on tablet mode, just pull the keyboard away, and you can enjoy complete freedom.

Despite the small size, it is more than comfortable enough to type for lengthy periods because of the keys’ superb tactile feedback and even spacing. The Type Cover also has backlighting, letting you operate in dimly lit areas. So, it is a great keyboard for the price.

Microsoft surface pro 7 vs. 8
The Surface Pro’s keyboard is detachable thanks to a clever magnetic design.

©Sompetch Khanakornpratip/Shutterstock.com


If you are a performance enthusiast, the Surface Pro 9 might not be a good pick. It doesn’t mean at all that it is an outdated or underpowered tech. But it won’t compete with a dedicated gaming setup or workstation laptop.

Depending on the model you pick, the Surface Pro this year receives an update to 12th Gen Intel hardware, either a Core i5 or Core i7 or the Microsoft SQ3 processor. These cores have the same number and configuration but operate at somewhat lower frequencies: its performance cores can reach 4.7GHz, while its efficiency cores can reach 3.5GHz.

The 12th Gen Core i5 and i7 won’t disappoint you in your day-to-day tasks or even some heavy tasks. But, if you wanna run some graphically challenging software or games, you would be better off with a gaming PC.


The Surface Pro 9 is equipped with a variety of ports to support a wide range of peripherals and devices. It includes two USB-C ports, which allow for fast data transfer, charging, and video output.

Additionally, it has a Surface Connect port for charging and docking, and a Surface Keyboard port for attaching a compatible keyboard. The 5G version of the Surface Pro 9 also includes a nano-SIM slot for cellular connectivity.

For wireless connections, both versions support Wi-Fi 6E and Bluetooth 5.1 technology. As the name implies, the 5G version also supports 5G cellular networks for high-speed internet access on the go.

The Surface Pro 9 also keeps you connected and in sync with essential tools and services. It synchronizes your calendar and emails with Outlook.

Plus, your files are automatically synchronized across devices thanks to the seamless connection with OneDrive, letting you view and collaborate on your work from any location. You’ll be diving headfirst into the Microsoft ecosystem and all the software that comes with it.


The Surface Pro 9 also features a dual-microphone array that delivers exceptional audio quality during video chats and recordings. 

As for the speakers, they are pleasantly surprising. You can expect up to 75 decibels maximum volume. For such a tiny device, this is pretty impressive.


Both the variants of Surface Pro 9 come equipped with a 47.7 Wh battery under the hood. That’s smaller than the Surface Pro 8 from last year as a point of comparison.

However, even with a smaller battery size, Microsoft has improved the battery life. This is possible due to the power-efficient hardware of this year’s Surface Pro.

Intel’s 12th generation i5 and i7 processors are also more efficient than ever, playing their role in the prolonged battery life of up to 15 hours. But the SQ3 version knocks both of them out of the park, with up to 19 hours of battery life.

Surface Pro with stylus
The Surface Pro lets you use a Stylus or Pen if you prefer more fine-tuned control.


Surface Pro 9: Is it a Buy?

Buy it if…

You’re looking for a flexible and potent gadget.

One of the biggest reasons to buy a Surface Pro is its adaptability to different use cases. The Surface Pro offers the portability and compactness of a tablet along with the increased productivity of a laptop, making it a great option if you want the best of both worlds.

Microsoft has been perfecting the Surface line for over a decade now, and the latest iteration offers the culmination of every improvement since the first generation. If you have been waiting for them to iron out all the kinks with this design, your time is finally here.

You want a highly portable device for on-the-go use.

The Surface Pro is designed to be highly portable, making it the perfect choice if you are often on the move. The design makes it easy to prop up anywhere and enjoy a movie or get some work done. Since it is so lightweight, you’ll hardly notice it in your bag or briefcase.

Whether traveling, attending meetings, or working remotely, the Surface Pro provides the convenience and mobility you can’t get out of a full-sized laptop.

Don’t Buy it if…

You want to upgrade your RAM later.

With a maximum of 32GB of RAM, the Surface Pro is well-equipped. But that is only the case if you buy the 32GB model. If you buy a model with less RAM and want to upgrade later, you’re out of luck. So, think carefully before settling on an 8GB or 16GB model.

You primarily play video games or need a laptop for demanding graphic tasks.

If gaming or graphic-intensive tasks are your primary focus, the Surface Pro might not offer the best experience. Although it can handle light gaming and simple graphics chores, it may not provide the same level of performance or specialized graphics capabilities as dedicated gaming laptops or workstations. You might want to look into alternatives that are more capable.

You operate in a field or require specific software incompatible with the Windows operating system.

If your work or profession relies on specific software or programs that are incompatible with the Windows operating system, the Surface Pro might not be the best option. Since it is a Microsoft device, it is fully engrained in their ecosystem. If you need Apple software instead, you should opt for a MacBook or iPad.

Best Dual-Purpose Option
Microsoft Surface Pro 9 – SQ3 Model
  • Microsoft SQ® 3 processor
  • 8 GB RAM
  • 13-inch PixelSense Flow Display
  • Up to 19 hours of battery life
  • Enhanced security with Microsoft Pluton
  • USB-C ports
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08/28/2023 07:22 pm GMT

Don’t Buy a Surface Pro Until You Read This FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions) 

Is the Surface Pro a conventional laptop?

Not exactly The Surface Pro 9 is a 2-in-1 PC, combining the small form factor of a tablet, with some of the performance benefits of a conventional laptop.

What is the warranty for the Surface Pro 9?

The Surface Pro 9 comes with a 1-year hardware warranty from Microsoft.

When did the Surface Pro 9 come out?

Microsoft released the Surface Pro 9 on October 12, 2022.

What software comes preloaded on the Surface Pro 9?

You get everything you need out of the box for web browsing and office work. The Surface Pro 9 comes with either Windows 11 Pro or Windows 10 Pro and preloaded Microsoft 365 Apps.

What is the battery life of the Surface Pro 9?

You can expect up to 15.5 hours under typical device usage, while the 5G version offers up to 19 hours.

What processors are used in the Surface Pro 9?

Depending on your configuration, the latest Surface uses the 12th Gen Intel Core i5-1245U or i7-1265U processors. The 5G version uses the Microsoft SQ3 processor.

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