Microsoft's Surface Pro Tablet Touches Ground February 9 for $899

Paul Lilly

Surface Pro wields a Core i5 processor and full support for legacy Windows applications.

After months of anticipation, Microsoft finally settled on a launch date for its upcoming Surface with Windows 8 Pro (Surface Pro from now on) tablet. It will be available in the U.S. and Canada starting on February 9, 2013, through all Microsoft retail stores, Microsoft's online store, and at Staples and Best Buy locations in the U.S., as well as from a number of un-named locations in Canada.

Surface Pro is aimed at buyers who need something more powerful and flexible than Surface RT. The Pro model sports a x86 foundation and will run Windows 7/8 applications. It's essentially a Windows notebook in a tablet body. It also comes with a Surface Pen and Full HD display, two features that are absent on the lower priced RT model.

"Surface Windows 8 Pro is an exciting new addition to the Surface family, bringing a powerful, work-ready device that is just at home in the boardroom as it is the family room," Microsoft says. "Whether you’re a road warrior, a student or someone who just wants a flexible and powerful Intel PC, the Surface Windows 8 Pro will deliver. It’s the perfect complement to the Surface Windows RT and delivers hours and hours of entertainment with plenty of power and productivity to get your work done as well."

Other features include 64GB or 128GB of internal storage, 4GB of RAM, 802.11n Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0, front- and rear-facing 720p HD LifeCams, full-size USB 3.0 port, mini-DisplayPort, and a microSDXC card slot.

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