Surface Studio, 3D Paint and VR – Microsoft’s latest updates
A sensational all-in-one PC, create in 3D paint, improvements to the Surface Book and Windows 10 VR – our favourite bits from the Microsoft event…
31 Oct 2016
Microsoft Surface computers are known for innovation in engineering and design. With the Surface Pro, it put a powerful PC into a tablet design and then with the Surface Book it created one of the most advanced laptops we’d ever seen. Now it takes things a step further by creating its first all-in-one desktop PC.
Introducing the Surface Studio
The Surface Studio is for designers and creatives – illustrators and graphic designers and photographers and video editors. It’s a super powerful computer in terms of processing power and specs and all of the components are built into its 28-inch screen – there’s no separate tower.
You can control it with a keyboard, with your fingers or a digital stylus on the touchscreen. It can be used as a powerful desktop PC and a digital canvas for drawing and sketching. It transforms your workspace into a creative studio, says Microsoft.
This builds on Microsoft’s existing work with Surface for creatives. It’s worked with Adobe to help Surface users get the best from applications like Illustrator and Photoshop.
Surface Studio was launched at an event in New York alongside a new Surface Book and some Windows 10 software updates.
Surface Studio best bits
- Screen sharper than a state-of-the-art 4K TV with 63% more pixels and 4.5K resolution for working up close in Adobe software
- Hinged screen can be pushed flat against your table so you can draw and design like you would on a sketchpad using the Surface Pen
- New type of controller called the Surface Dial. About the size of an ice hockey puck, the dial carries out tasks when you turn it
- Run powerful Adobe design software smoothly with the Intel Core i7 processor and plenty of RAM
When does it launch? We’ll update you when we know for sure.
Surface Book gets bigger battery
When Microsoft launched the original Surface Book it called it the ‘ultimate laptop’. It’s a premium laptop with powerful processing tech and sophisticated design. Again aimed at designers, its touchscreen works with the Surface Pen for sketching on-screen.
The really clever bit though? The hinge that connects the screen to the laptop body detaches to give you a separate tablet when you need one.
We loved the original Surface Book. Now it gets an upgrade – the Surface Book with Performance Base.
Surface Book with Performance Base best bits
- More than twice the graphics processing power of the first Surface Book for the most demanding creative software
- 16 hours of battery life on a single charge for working all day and into the night
- Run powerful Adobe design software with Intel Core i5/i7 processors and plenty of RAM and SSD
- Work up close in Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop on the large high-resolution screen
Windows 10 goes 3D for VR
Microsoft also previewed the next version of Windows 10 – the major new operating system it first launched in 2015.
Nearly 400 million devices are running Windows 10 across 192 countries so you’d have to say it’s been pretty successful so far. Now it’s going to be updated with the Windows 10 Creators Edition that focuses on 3D and virtual reality, social sharing and gaming.
Microsoft showed off some of the 3D creating and editing tools at the New York event. At the same time it revealed a number of new virtual reality headsets to work with Windows 10 from the likes of Acer and Asus.
Cool things you’ll be able to do in 3D…
- Draw three-dimensional images in Paint 3D – the new version of iconic Windows application
- Scan objects like drinks cans or ornaments with your smartphone and it’ll be imported into Paint 3D
- Create virtual models by drawing them with your Surface pen on your laptop’s touchscreen
- Send your creations to a 3D printer to see how they work in the real world
- Liven up PowerPoint presentations by adding 3D objects to your slides
- Integrate your 3D creations with Microsoft’s upcoming HoloLens augmented reality headset
Microsoft’s announcement comes as we reach the end of what has been a big year for virtual reality. The eagerly awaited virtual reality headset Oculus Rift finally launched alongside ones from HTC and PlayStation as well as plenty of games to play on them.
Windows 10 Creators Edition launches in spring 2017 as a free upgrade for anyone running Windows 10.