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Microsoft announces Surface for Windows 8 Pro: Intel inside, optional pen input

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Microsoft didn't just announce one Surface tablet today -- it's announced one for each of the main varieties of Windows. That includes the Surface for Windows 8 Pro, which is slightly larger and decidedly more Intel-based than its ARM-fueled counterpart for Windows RT. In addition to the more full-fledged OS, it packs a larger 42 W-h battery, an Ivy Bridge Core i5 processor (at least in the model on display today), USB 3.0 ports instead of 2.0, and your choice of 64GB or 128GB of storage (double the standard offerings of the RT Surface). You'll also get a higher 1080p resolution from the 10.6-inch ClearType display, but it comes wrapped in a package that's 13.5 mm thick and weighs 903 grams (compared to just 9.3 mm and 676 grams for the RT). That's apparently not big enough to disqualify it from Microsoft's new keyboard-laden covers, though, and it even gets another accessory of its own: a pen with "Palm Block." As for pricing and availability, Microsoft is only going as far to say that it will be "on par with Ultrabook-class PCs" and available about three months after the Windows 8 launch (when the RT model will be available).

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