Darren Weaver/Business Insider
Microsoft Surface Studio is a really cool, gigantic touchscreen Windows 10 PC.
When Microsoft released the first Surface tablet, it was mainly trying to show computer makers what a touchscreen PC might look like and what it could do.
Now, though, the company has turned the Surface into a full business, offering a lineup of four different devices. And the computers are so good even Apple is following Microsoft’s lead.
There are cheaper computers out there. But if you want one that combines the premium quality of an Apple device with the flexibility (and touchscreen) of a Windows 10 laptop, you should check out the Surface line first.
Here’s how to choose among the different Surface computers, going from the least expensive model to the priciest.
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Surface Pro — $799 and up
What is it? A tablet-laptop hybrid. The flagship of the Surface lineup, the Pro used to be sold as the “tablet that can replace your laptop,” but Microsoft now calls it “the most versatile laptop in the world.” It’s still a tablet, though — you’ll have to buy the keyboard separately.
What you need to know: Microsoft basically invented the whole idea of the two-in-one PC, and this is still the cream of the crop. It’s super-light and extraordinarily thin. It’s great for sketching drawings or taking notes, and it offers both a bright screen and rock-solid PC performance.
Comparable Apple product: The MacBook Air or the iPad Pro. Unlike the MacBook Air, though, it offers a touchscreen. And unlike the iPad Pro, it can run a desktop class operating system — in its case, Windows 10 — and the full, non-compromised versions of software like Adobe Photoshop and Microsoft Office.
What’s the catch? It uses a kickstand to stay upright, which is fine on a desk, but makes the Pro extremely difficult to use on your lap.
Price: From $799 to $2,699. Additionally, you’ll want the Surface Pro Type Cover keyboard, which costs $129 or $159 if you opt for the fabric-covered version. You might also want to add the $99 Surface Pen stylus.
Last update: Mid-June 2017
about Surface Pro.