The Surface Pro 10 for Business is good, but the one you want is coming in May

Microsoft recently announced the Surface Pro 10 and Surface Laptop 6 for Business, but these aren’t the devices you’ve been waiting for.

Key Takeaways

  • The real Surface Pro 10 and Surface Laptop 6 are not here yet – wait for the big reveal on May 20.
  • The upcoming consumer models will deliver a lot more than a spec bump.
  • Arm processors are changing the game for Windows PCs with improved performance and efficiency.

After more than a year without new entries in its most iconic Surface devices, Microsoft finally introduced the Surface Pro 10 and Surface Laptop 6 earlier this week. Well, kind of. What we really got was the Surface Pro 10 for Business and Surface Laptop 6 for Business, and if you’re thinking this is all Microsoft has in store, think again.

The real Surface Pro 10 and Surface Laptop 6 are still coming, and they’re going to look very different from the devices we saw earlier this week. So don’t go clicking the Buy button yet — you’ll see the good stuff on May 20.


Surface Pro 10 for Business: Everything you need to know about Microsoft’s flagship tablet

Microsoft’s latest tablet is a business-oriented product, featuring Intel Core Ultra processors and a new HDR display.

We didn’t get what we wanted, but we will

The Surface Pro 10 and Surface Laptop 6 for Business are good devices, but they’re not for you

To be totally fair to the Surface Pro 10 for Business and Surface Laptop 6 for Business, it’s not that these are bad devices, not at all. Microsoft made some long-overdue improvements like using an anti-reflective screen, plus new webcams, including a 1080p camera for the Surface Laptop for the first time. This comes along with big performance upgrades for both models, but especially the Surface Laptop 6, which now uses H-series processors for double the performance of its predecessor. Even the ports have been upgraded on some models, and these are, overall, very refined, but safe products.


Surface Laptop 6 for Business: Everything you need to know about Microsoft’s professional laptop

The Surface Laptop 6 may look similar to the old model, but it promises double the performance, plus other upgrades.

But of course, you probably heard the rumors before this event. We’ve heard of a Surface Pro 10 with an OLED display, a new design for the Surface Laptop 6, and Arm processors for both devices. What we saw earlier this week wasn’t that, and that’s probably disappointing for many. But that doesn’t mean the cool devices aren’t coming.

The Surface Pro 10 and Surface Laptop 6 are coming in May

And they’re going to bring huge news

Rear angled view of Surface Pro 9 with blue accents
Surface Pro 9 with 5G

Just before Microsoft’s event on this past Thursday, the company announced another event for May 20, just a day before its Build developer conference starts. You never hear about two Surface events so close to each other, but there’s a good reason for it this time. The March 21 event was just for business, and the real news for consumers will be announced at this second event on May 20.

Indeed, the real Surface Pro 10 and Surface Laptop 6 are going to be at this event, and it’s going to be a huge deal. For starters, as we’ve mentioned above, the Surface Pro 10 will come with an OLED display, a huge upgrade for image quality. If you’ve seen an OLED display, you know how great they can look with their vivid colors and deep blacks, and that’s what you can expect.

Meanwhile, the Surface Laptop 6 is getting a brand-new design for the first time ever. It will have thinner bezels around the display (a major pain point with the current models), and it will adopt the rounded corners we’ve seen on many other laptops, including the MacBook Air and Surface Laptop Studio 2. It will also have a new haptic touchpad, which uses vibration to simulate the feeling of a click.

But the real news will, of course, be the processor inside both of these machines. The Surface Pro 10 and Surface Laptop 6 are both said to come with the Qualcomm Snapdragon X Elite chipset, and there may not be any Intel versions at all. That may seem strange to you, but think about how careful Microsoft has been with adopting other processors that aren’t Intel in the past. If Microsoft is this confident in Qualcomm, you can expect big things.

Arm is going to upend the Windows PC market

And it’s not just Surface

Ever since Apple introduced Apple Silicon, the perception of what a laptop should be able to has radically changed, with a balance of performance and efficiency that was thought to be impossible. Until now, Windows laptops haven’t been able to catch up, but that’s changing with the Snapdragon X Elite.

We learned all the specs of this chip back in November, and it’s looking like it’s going to change everything for Windows PCs. With 12 high-performance Oryon cores, the Snapdragon X Elite is promising 60% more performance than a 13th-gen 45W chip from Intel while using a third of the power. For graphics, Qualcomm promises up to 80% better performance than AMD’s integrated graphics while using a fifth of the power. And recently, during an event for Snapdragon Insiders, we saw the NPU on the Snapdragon X Elite perform more than twice as fast as the one on the Intel Core Ultra processors in DaVinci Resolve (oh yeah, and Resolve will run natively on Arm, too).

We have our own tests comparing the Snapdragon X Elite to an Intel Core Ultra 7 155H, and Qualcomm comes out on top in almost every metric. And not by a small margin, either. Every benchmark gave Qualcomm a sizeable advantage, and that’s on pre-release hardware six months (or so) before these products actually launch. You’re no longer making a performance sacrifice by going with Arm, but you’re still getting way better battery life than on Intel.


Snapdragon X Elite vs Intel Core Ultra 7 155H: We ran the benchmarks

Intel stole the show at CES, but Qualcomm was there to say it’s still coming for them

The Surface Pro 10 and Surface Laptop 6 are two of the first devices to come with the Qualcomm Snapdragon X Elite, but they won’t be alone. In fact, the May 20 event will likely bring us many more devices from other partners, and you’re about to see a big change in the paradigm for Windows PCs. Arm is going to change everyone’s expectations for a laptop, and it’s no longer limited to MacBooks.

Windows is getting some updates, too

More AI and more Arm optimizations

Screenshot of Windows 11 with Microsoft Copilot shown in a resized window

Of course, hardware is just one part of the equation, and Microsoft has been working on some big new Windows features we’ll likely see at the May 20 event as well. One of those “features”, albeit a hidden one, is optimization work for Arm. Microsoft has already stated in the past that it’s working on big optimizations for Arm devices, and in fact, this is why we’re still waiting for devices to launch with the Snapdragon X Elite. Microsoft is doing a lot of work behind the scenes so Windows can take full advantage of Arm processors, so performance will be that much better. I can’t say whether Microsoft will go into further details about these optimizations, but they’re exciting all the same.

Aside from that, the May 20 event will also include some big AI news for Windows, and it’s likely many of them will take advantage of the NPU in the Snapdragon X Elite, so those experiences will always be better on these new devices. We’ve heard of a new Paint NPU app, built-in AI-powered upscaling (or Super Resolution) for games, and the rumored AI Explorer feature may all be a huge part of this. If the Snapdragon X Elite’s NPU is as good as we’ve heard, these features are a great reason to wait for these new devices, too.


Windows 11 2024 Update: What’s new and why it’s not Windows 12

The Windows 11 2024 Update will bring a ton of changes to the operating system, including better support for Arm devices.

Waiting is the right move

You might be tempted by the Surface Pro 10 for Business and Surface Laptop 6 for Business, but don’t be fooled, there’s very little reason for most people to buy them. It’s true that Intel has historically been better at performance, but things are about to change with the Snapdragon X Elite and a big Windows 11 update. A deluge of excellent Arm devices is coming, and the real Surface Pro 10 and Surface Laptop 6 will be one of the first. Wait just a little longer — it will be worth it.

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