The Microsoft Surface Pro 4 has twice been replaced by new models – first by the Surface Pro 2017, then the Surface Pro 6. However, this tablet still remains top-notch, and still worth your consideration. This is because after its release four years ago, the laptop was highly acclaimed as the beginning of a new era, and the natural progression of the surface pro reign. And today, the Surface Pro 4 still influences one of the subsequent Surface devices you can buy.
Amazingly, the Microsoft Surface Pro 4 runs on Windows 10, unlike the Surface Pro 3, which runs on Windows 8.1. This is a great advantage for the Surface Pro 4, and one of the reason it still remains among the most sorted devices four years later.
Microsoft has put a lot of commendable effort to refine this tablet, rather than extremely changing its formula. It retains the same design as the Surface Pro 3, only refined, and improved. Meanwhile, there’s a new chromium Microsoft logo perfectly positioned on the metallic chassis. Aside from the design, the Surface Pro 4 was released with a new Surface pen that brings in more levels of sensitivity than the previous models. In addition, there’s a more satisfying higher resolution of 2,736 x 1,824, and 216 ppi density display.
Microsoft Surface Pro 4 Key Specifications
- Display: 12.3-inches matte display
- Resolution: 2727 x 1824 pixels
- Processor: 2.4GHz Intel Core i5-6300U
- Camera: 8MP rear-facing, 5MP front-facing, 1080p HD camera
- RAM: 8GB
- Storage: 256GB Intel SSD
- Battery Capacity: 3 hours, 15 minutes
- OS: Windows 10
Microsoft Surface Pro 4: Design and Display
Just like the previous models, the same unibody casing, all magnesium body is still there, only the “Surface Logo” has been battered for the new Microsoft’s logo in chrome. The size of the Surface Pro 4 has been increased from 12-inches to 12.3-inches. On the contrary, Microsoft has shaved out a few millimeters of its thickness to now become slimmer at 8.4mm.
Interestingly, Microsoft has brought in it’s trademarked PixelSense screen technology that brought the screen’s optical stack (diodes, sensors, and pixels underneath the glass) closer to the glass. This display’s key points are its fast responsiveness and sensitivity that make the Stylus Pen experience more massive.
When it comes to resolution, Microsoft made some slight changes by increasing the Surface Pro 4’s resolution from 2,160 x 1,440 (216 ppi, or pixels per inch) to 2,736 x 1,824. This will bring the Surface Pro 4 to 271 ppi density which outscores the MacBook Air 2017 (13-inches at 128ppi) completely, and slightly blows the first-generation iPad Pro (264 ppi for the 12.9-inches).
Notably, the Microsoft Surface Pro 4 screen proves to be more color accurate and luminous than the Surface Pro 3 when it comes to screen brightness. This would be a great advantage for any artist or designer who wants something more stylish than those calibrated monitor and Wacom tablet combo.
As for the normal users, this means more natural color looking movies, as well as vibrant photos and games. However, the Surface Pro 4 comes with thicker black bezels limiting your favorite movie shows to a 16:9 ratio, and more for those in widescreen format, despite keeping 3:2 from the previous model. This is a big concern for fans who want to watch plenty of movies or play games on a tablet.
Microsoft Surface Pro 4: Surface Pen and Type Cover
Despite having the aforementioned 1,024 levels of pressure sensitivity, the new Surface Pen has been redesigned to give it a pencil-like feel. The new design makes the Stylus pen more comfortable to use than its predecessor, with your index finger positioned slightly above the main function button on the flat end. Fortunately, the era of stylus loops is coming to an end as the redesigned Surface pen now has its left side glazed with powerful, thin strip magnets which easily allows the pen to cling on to the left side of the tablet.
When using the Surface pen with Microsoft’s PixelSense display, the combination brings out the best stylus feeling we’ve ever experienced on a tablet. Despite not being a graphics designer or an artist, this accurate pen tracking paired with the screen’s brilliant palm detection clears our doubt of whether the Surface Pro 4 is Microsoft’s best shot at taking over the tablet market.
However, these enhancements are nothing compared to Microsoft’s new Type Cover. To bring in a more superb design, Microsoft integrated the chiclet-style design, which keeps track of the current key your finger is on and lets the keys be individually backlit.
This Microsoft’s new-though-still-not-included Type Cover is more rigid and thicker than before, paving way for intense key travel and punchier feedback. In addition, there’s a quieter and sturdier surface to type on – not to mention the widened touchpad that’s coated in glass rather than the usual plastic.
Finally, there’s a version of this Type Cover with a biometric fingerprint ID that goes for ₦62,000 ($159, £149). This new only black Type Cover uses Windows Hello to log in with a fingertip press. This fingerprint scanner can authorize app purchases from the Windows Store. Another advantage of this keyboard is that it’s backward compatible, which means it can work with the Surface Pro 3 as well.
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Microsoft Surface Pro 4: Hardware Performance
The Microsoft Surface Pro 4 shows a slightly increase in performance testing. This means the tablet is already in it’s best form, except for its mediocre battery that needed fixing. The Surface Pro 4 with about 25% outscores the HP Spectre x360. The 13-inches MacBook Air score is nothing compared to what the Surface Pro 4 reached.
However, the Surface Pro 4 can play HD games at the highest settings without breaking a sweat, even at the default resolution. Plus the color-calibrated display will make the games much more distracting.
In conclusion, there’s no much difference between the Surface Pro 4 and it’s competitors on everyday performance, apart from the slightly bigger battery on MacBook Air. However, the Surface Pro 4 has a slightly better gaming performance than the 2015 Spectre x360, though none of them is a gaming device.
Microsoft Surface Pro 4: Battery Capacity
The tested Microsoft Surface Pro 4 delivered improved battery life results than the pre-production hardware testing, though it’s still below Microsoft’s own claims. However, the PCMark 8 Home Battery intensive test saw the Surface Pro 4 last for 3 hours and 15 minutes, which is below Spectre x360 (4 hours and 38 minutes).
Microsoft Surface Pro 4: Price in Nigeria and Availability
The Microsoft Surface Pro 4 isn’t just a brilliant choice for creative professionals on the go, but a worthy alternative to the Surface Book 2. Admittedly, the Microsoft Surface Pro 4 still has its drawback especially when it comes to battery life. However, it’s still one of the products we’ll recommend for fans who wants a Windows 10 high productivity tablet. Currently, the Microsoft Surface Pro 4 is priced at ₦420,000 ($1,078) for the 8GB RAM and 256GB storage variant. The device is already on sale at any leading gadgets store nationwide.