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Microsoft Surface Go Review: Productivity On the Move

microsoft surface go review

The road between Ultrabooks and tablets is getting thinner by the day, with tablets getting extra highly effective and conventional laptops getting leaner. These days, Microsoft has diverted its consideration from software program and has been focusing on refining its laptops and convertibles meant to problem Apple’s iPad line-up. Its newest tablet-laptop hybrid – Microsoft Surface Go – is strolling precisely in the center of this tight rope. For a beginning worth of Rs 37,999 in India, the Surface Go is unquestionably a extremely moveable providing, however does it justify the worth and proposition? We’ll see on this evaluate.

This evaluate analyzes how nicely the Microsoft Surface Go matches into the cellular pill pc class. Thus, the key areas that I’ll give attention to embrace mobility, ease of use, I/O choices, and its potential to be a full-fledged pc. Though I’ve additionally managed to place the Surface Go by way of demanding duties similar to operating Adobe Photoshop CC 19 and video games reminiscent of CS:GO, I’ve taken due care to keep away from this from majorly impacting my opinion about the Surface Go, since the gadget shouldn’t be designed for such a workload.

Earlier than I begin, I need to make clear that the Surface Go is available in three totally different configurations, of which solely two can be found right here in India. I obtained an opportunity to evaluate the 8GB RAM and 128GB storage mannequin and my observations are based mostly on these specs and never the entry-level 4GB RAM mannequin.

The system is primarily for lots of labor on-the-go and that’s what I’ll be giving most of my consideration to, on this assessment. So let’s begin with the specs.

Microsoft Surface Go Specs

On the first peek at the spec sheet, the Surface Go may really feel a bit underpowered. It’s because the system comes with an Intel Pentium Gold fan-less processor, which is clearly a stranger in a market flooded by Intel Core i3, i5 and i7. However as we’d see in the later sections, the processor is surprisingly good.

Listed here are the specs of the Microsoft Surface Go:

Dimensions 245 mm x 175 mm x eight.30 mm Show 10-inch 1800X1200 (217 PPI) PixelSense Processor Intel Pentium Gold 4415Y 1.6GHz dual-core with hyperthreading Storage 8GB Graphics Intel HD 615 Digital camera 5MP entrance, 8MP rear, 1080p video recording Storage 128G PCIe SSD OS Home windows 10 S Connectivity 1 x USB-C, three.5 mm Headset Jack, Charging Port Wi-fi Twin-band 802.11ac WiFi, IEEE 802.11a/b/g/n suitable, Bluetooth four.1 Battery 6 hours Worth Begins at Rs. 37,999

Microsoft Surface Go: Design and Construct

The Surface Go from its exterior look is a pill with the ordinary rectangular design however with an uncommon facet ratio. Earlier than switching on the show the entrance looks like its all show however that’s merely an phantasm. On the again, there’s a kickstand – plate, relatively, because it covers the whole decrease half of the Surface Go, identical to the bigger Surface Professional –  which could be pulled off to maintain the pill standing on a flat floor and even in your lap. The panel extends all the means as much as 180-degrees so you’ll be able to recline the pill at nearly any angle in between, and this flexibility is value rejoicing over.

microsoft surface go review

The one branding that you simply’ll see on the Surface Go is in type of a Microsoft emblem on the again plate. Alongside all sides, you’ll discover ridges which can help you use your nails and pull the plate out and these, typically, could be troublesome to seek out for those who’re not wanting instantly at them. The again plate could be very tight and typically feels caught, giving one the impression that you simply may snap or break it with an excessive amount of pressure. When you get used to it, nevertheless, the Surface Go feels a lot simpler to put on a desk at any angle. Hidden behind this can be a tiny, easily-missed microSD slot, which can be utilized to increase the storage.

microsoft surface go review

The higher half of the rear sports activities the mic, a digital camera and an LED indicator beside it. Alongside the higher edge, you’ll discover two buttons – one for energy and unlocking the display in addition to a quantity rocker. The fitting edge encompasses a headphone jack, a USB-C port for charging and knowledge syncing, and to ensure I/O stays unhindered, there’s a devoted charging port. This can be a magnetic port however the adapter makes use of an extended, flat plug, which could remind of the previous 30-pin charger which iPhone 4S and older fashions sported. There’s loads of empty area for a fingerprint scanner however Microsoft has determined towards placing one.

The underside edge has magnetic connectors for the Surface Go keyboard folio cowl whereas the left edge is totally clean. Each the left and the proper edges can be used to connect the Surface Pen, which is the way it pairs to the Surface Go and in addition costs. Each the keyboard and the Pen don’t include the Surface Go and should be purchased individually.

microsoft surface go review

On the entrance, there’s a 10-inch touchscreen which has a facet ratio of three:2. This isn’t the most favorable facet ratio, particularly when you’re planning to purchase the Surface Go to observe movies, however we’ll dissect that in the Show part. Camouflaged beneath the bezels on each the left and the proper sides of the show relaxation two tiny, front-firing audio system which aren’t loud however surprisingly do an honest job. Beneath the prime bezel is a front-facing digital camera together with an LED which lights up when the digital camera is in use.

While the Surface Go also has an LTE model in select markets, the company has not launched it in India.

The chassis of the Surface Go is constructed with a magnesium alloy and feels gentle to the touch, general, however stays rock strong whenever you attempt to apply strain. Certainly, that is one space the place the Surface Go will single-handedly beat the 2018 iPad Professional which has roped in Bendgate v2. Regardless of the strong development, the Surface Go feels mild and prepared for motion.

Microsoft Surface Go: Show

The Surface Go makes use of a 10-inch PixelSense show with a decision of 1800×1200. With a pixel density barely in need of 220ppi, the show is wealthy, crisp, well-contrasted and completely satisfying. In case you’re utilizing the Surface Go for primary designing or illustration, the colour accuracy can also be good. When it comes to brightness, the pill pc presents a brightness of greater than 400 nits which provides nice readability regardless of the overhead mild falling on the show.

microsoft surface go review

The three:2 facet ratio, nevertheless, is fairly odd and considerably discomforting, particularly whereas watching movies on YouTube, or apps like Prime Video and Netflix. That is problematic since Home windows 10 runs YouTube or different video gamers in the desktop mode and doesn’t help any choice to zoom into movies to cowl the clean patches. The show does stick out like a sore thumb, since increasingly producers are adopting 2:1 (18:9) and even greater facet ratios for his or her smartphones, which in flip has compelled creators to leap the bandwagon, too.

Microsoft’s selection of the facet ratio doesn’t really feel very consumer pleasant for video consumption. Nevertheless it permits customers to learn extra content material inside the first fold of an internet site (in panorama mode) and this argument is sensible when you think about that the Surface Go is primarily made for web searching, writing fast paperwork and browsing social media feeds.

If one can overlook the odd facet ratio, the show is a sheer delight

microsoft surface go review

In relation to responsiveness, the show does pretty properly too. It helps 10-point contact and is a appeal to make use of with a finger. Typing on this display isn’t troublesome both with the touches getting registered very simply and precisely, and Home windows’ pill mode helps quite a lot of keyboard layouts.

Aside from the facet ratio, the different factor that irks me is the measurement of those bezels, that are virtually an inch vast alongside all 4 edges and rob the Surface Go of a contemporary look. If these two issues don’t matter a lot to you, the show will supply a really palatable expertise. General, I’m extraordinarily happy with the high quality of this show which fills up these gaps.

Microsoft Surface Go: Connectivity and Ports

As talked about above, the Microsoft Surface Go includes a USB Sort-C port, a charging port, and a headphone jack. Whereas there isn’t any full-sized USB port, you possibly can make the most of the USB-C port with virtually any suitable dongle and use a number of exterior enhancements, together with wired mice and keyboards, shows, arduous disks and so forth. with out the want of exterior energy. I simply want the port was decrease on the physique in order that cable administration was simpler.

microsoft surface go review

Aside from this, the Surface Go helps IEEE 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac dual-band Wi-Fi and Bluetooth four.1 for wi-fi transfers and for connecting with the Surface Pen, Surface Mouse, or different wi-fi equipment. Moreover, there help for a microSD card if you’d like extra storage than the inbuilt 128GB SSD.

Whereas the Surface Go additionally has an LTE mannequin in choose markets resembling the US, the firm has not launched it in India. It’s priced at $679.

Microsoft Surface Go: Audio system

The Microsoft Surface Go sports activities a stereo speaker setup which is decently loud and has a usable sound high quality. When it comes to the output, the sound did not impress me and has poor bass. The quantity, too, isn’t shocking, and also you is perhaps higher off shopping for a sixth Gen iPad on this worth phase in the event you’re on the lookout for putting multimedia output from a pill. Nevertheless, the clean treble and acceptable mids make up for the missing elements.

With that stated, in the event you primarily watch movies or binge on Netflix, you wouldn’t encounter any type of crackling or distortion in these audio system. They’re nice for informal utilization however since these audio system are rated at solely 2W, audiophiles won’t get any pleasure nor ought to they anticipate a lot from the Surface Go.

Microsoft Surface Go: Cameras

Tablets usually are not sometimes nice at images – until you purchase an iPad – and that’s true for the Microsoft Surface Go. It comes with an 8MP auto-focusing digital camera on the again and a 5MP fastened focus digital camera on the entrance, each of which help video calling at 1080p. Each cameras are respectable sufficient for the job, however not precisely thrilling in any method.

Throughout my utilization, I discovered that the Surface Go’s entrance digital camera had higher colour copy than the one on the again – though the high quality of each is almost the similar. The standard is sweet for video calling or any pressing selfie – and a lot better than the MacBook Professional’s HD webcam, however I didn’t discover myself utilizing both of the cameras for any precise images.

microsoft surface go review

The digital camera encompasses a sort-of Professional mode the place you possibly can change attributes like the white stability, publicity, ISO, and in addition select the default scene. Whereas daylight could possibly be the saving grace for sure pictures, the state of affairs is dismal in relation to indoor and night-time images.

microsoft surface go reviewSelfie indoors

The digital camera additionally unlocks the laptop computer together with your face utilizing Home windows Hey IR face recognition.

Microsoft Surface Go: Efficiency

Microsoft Go is actually a smaller Surface Professional and as is clear from the identify, its main objective is to give you compute capabilities when you’re on the transfer. The Intel Pentium Gold 4415Y processor, which powers the Surface Go, is available in a dual-core configuration with hyperthreading which interprets to 4 digital cores. It’s clocked at 1.6GHz, which means that it’s able to operating duties with primary and middling necessities.

microsoft surface go review

Paired with the 8GB RAM, the processor does pretty nicely, and I used to be very stunned by Surface Go’s efficiency in case of routine duties like searching the net, watching movies, and even informal gaming. I additionally used this as my main gadget for writing for Beebom over a minimum of 4 days. It works like a appeal even with greater than 10 Chrome tabs opened directly, with no lag often whereas enjoying HD movies on YouTube.

I additionally pushed Surface Go out of its consolation zone and performed Counter-Strike: International Offensive, which just lately turned free-to-play on Steam, on it. I additionally ran the newest model of Adobe Photoshop. You possibly can run these instruments on Surface Go and whereas the expertise wouldn’t precisely be very clean, the packages at the least didn’t crash. Now and again, Photoshop will get a bit sluggish however the SSD immediately rushes to the rescue.

microsoft surface go review

I did max out on the CPU utilization nevertheless it was a bearable expertise and never precisely irritating. CS:GO ran with none lag on all settings set to low whereas pushing them to medium did make the recreation jittery – though playable however not likely gratifying. I additionally tried enjoying PUBG Cellular utilizing the Tencent Buddy official emulator however the recreation lagged closely even on the lowest settings.

Contemplating that the Surface Go makes use of a fanless processor, it did warmth up throughout benchmark testing and intensive utilization however by no means outdoors manageable temps.

Microsoft Surface Go: Geekbench, Cinebench Benchmarks

Coming to the benchmark scores, I ran Geekbench four and Cinebench R15 on the Microsoft Surface Go and the scores weren’t thrilling, particularly for the multi-core efficiency. The scores weren’t as golden as the identify of the processor however that doesn’t translate into poor efficiency in the sensible sense.

General, the efficiency feels justified for the worth, particularly contemplating the high quality of development and the extremely moveable design.

Microsoft Surface Go: Sort Cowl

Whereas the Surface Go doesn’t include a keyboard, you should purchase the official Microsoft Surface Go Sort Cowl keyboard, which is available in quite a lot of colours. The official keyboard attaches effortlessly to the Surface Go utilizing magnetic connectors and in addition serves as a folio cowl for the pill.

microsoft surface go review

The bottom is roofed in a soft-touch material and there are two variants of the material. The cheaper of the two is draped in microfiber material whereas the costlier one flaunt the premium Alcantara material which we have now seen in previous variations of Surface units. We acquired the microfiber model for evaluation, and it’s priced at Rs eight,600 in India. The colour variants of the Sort Cowl are priced at Rs 11,799 in India, which makes them fairly premium in our opinion.

The keyboard has one other magnet alongside its prime edge which permits it to be inclined. Utilizing this, you possibly can both lay the keyboard flat or increase it barely in the direction of the prime to make typing simpler. Throughout my utilization, there was no flex or bending in the keyboard in any respect in the inclined place, in order that’s a bonus. The keyboard additionally has three-stage backlighting.

microsoft surface go review

The keys are an altogether totally different case. Whereas the keys are tactile and have a great 1mm journey, their small measurement might be difficult initially. The “Tab” secret is shorter than regular whereas the proper CTRL key has been sacrificed due to the keyboard’s general small type issue.

It took me some irritating hours of errors (getting used to the “Tab” took longer than a day) to get used to this laptop computer. I’m positive Microsoft’s designers would have taken under consideration the common measurement of human arms and fingers earlier than designing the keyboard so it shouldn’t be “too small” for many on the market.

microsoft surface go review

Underneath the keyboard is a small mechanical trackpad, with a “glass face sheet” on the prime which felt like clean plastic to me. My expertise with it wasn’t precisely nice however I’ve no cause to really feel it was dangerous both. The Precision trackpad helps the multi-finger gestures in Home windows with none hassle.

Typing on this keyboard feels premium, regardless of the preliminary feeling of being cramped. Over time, as your fingers get used to the place of the keys, anybody who varieties lots is more likely to take pleasure in typing on this keyboard. The touchpad is just not very thrilling nevertheless it’s not dangerous both. The microfiber model is out there in Black when you get the extra premium variant in Burgundy, Cobalt Blue, and Platinum colours.

Microsoft Surface Pen

Microsoft Surface Pen is one other accent which you could purchase if you wish to write on the Surface Go together with your hand or draw one thing. The pen can be helpful for digital artists and nevertheless it is probably not as helpful to common customers as the keyboard case could be. The Pen is suitable with all Microsoft Surface units which help contact and attaches to the pill with the magnets on the left and the proper sides. I’m not good at drawing so I didn’t really feel its want apart from the occasions once I was too lazy to sort.

microsoft surface go review

It can be used for typing with Home windows’ handwriting device in the event you don’t wish to sort lots and even as a mouse. Urgent the button on the rear finish opens the Sticky Notes app the place you will get to the critical enterprise of note-taking (or simply doodle for a spot of meditation) whereas the one other on the grip works for granted click on as you contact the display whereas protecting it pressed.

microsoft surface go review

However for this luxurious, you’ll have to pay a premium of Rs 9,700 over and above the pill’s worth.

Microsoft Surface Go Battery

Considered one of the important necessities from a pc that you simply journey with, is dependable battery life and right here the Microsoft Surface Go does okay, however not nice. In my every day utilization, the battery lasted virtually six hours on average utilization and Balanced battery settings, whereas it lasted half of that point i.e. three hours on Excessive Efficiency mode. Furthermore, whereas gaming, it lasted barely over an hour.

microsoft surface go review

Recharging the Surface Go, nevertheless, is handy as you need to use both use USB-C or the normal charger. I used to be additionally capable of cost it with a smartphone charger rated at 15W, so this can be a handy choice. Utilizing the normal charger, it takes almost 90 minutes to cost absolutely whereas the price of USB-C is dependent upon the energy score of the charging brick. A MacBook’s 61W USB-C charger costs barely quicker however extra importantly, I actually like the choice of getting two charging ports; it’s very helpful.

Microsoft Surface Go: Software program

The system comes with Home windows 10 Residence locked in S Mode, which can forestall you from putting in apps from any supply aside from the Microsoft Retailer to make sure larger safety. Most of the Home windows customers like the working system for the ease of putting in apps from third-party sources. You can’t even set up Google Chrome or different mainstream browsers like Firefox Quantum, Opera, or Safari.

microsoft surface go review

Bypassing this restriction, nevertheless, is straightforward and extra importantly free. You could improve the Surface Go to Home windows Residence 10 however you can’t return to the S Mode after unlocking the gadget as soon as. I switched out of the S Mode to put in third-party software program like Google Chrome, Adobe Photoshop, Steam and so on.

Like some other Surface pc, Home windows 10 on the Microsoft Surface Go could be very properly optimized. There isn’t any seen lag or latency whereas utilizing contact or the trackpad. Nevertheless, a number of customers have reported a noticeable lag whereas altering the brightness and I skilled it too. However there’s a repair out there for it. General, the expertise has no hiccups and the SSD ensures that Home windows 10 boots up or shuts down inside 10 seconds (besides once you’re caught in the everlasting loop of a Home windows Replace).

Microsoft Surface Go: Execs and Cons

The Surface Go is a succesful tablet-cum-laptop that brings the ease of mobility and adaptability to your work and productiveness. It’s quick and highly effective however merely not sufficient to switch your desktop or gaming laptop computer; it’s going to make a terrific companion for the street although. Clearly, the Surface Go isn’t for everybody, however it nonetheless has quite a bit going for it as we will see:


  • Vibrant and brilliant display
  • Responsive 10-point contact show
  • Sturdy construct
  • MicroSD card slot
  • SSD storage choice
  • Home windows Whats up help
  • Twin cameras
  • A number of charging choices
  • HDMI Show help (by way of dongle)
  • Magnetic charging port
  • Runs primary and informal video games
  • Tactile keyboard
  • Surface Pen

microsoft surface go review


  • No fingerprint sensor
  • Single USB-C and no full-sized USB port
  • Common battery
  • Small keys require follow
  • Keyboard case and Surface Pen to be purchased individually

Microsoft Surface Go: The Sensible Pill PC

The Microsoft Surface Go is strictly for the shopper who has primary necessities from an ultra-portable laptop computer or pill however doesn’t need to compromise on the usability of a Home windows pc or the high quality. In contrast to the iPad Professional and the Pixel Slate, which draw back from truly being full-fledged laptops, the Surface Go does something that a primary Home windows laptop computer can do, and even has room for surprises. This makes me really feel that the Surface Go is extra sensible than the different two choices.

Surface Go Not solely poses Properly as pill however ALSO AS a pc

The Surface Go is unquestionably highly effective sufficient for primary productiveness and work duties, and could be a good choice for college kids, bloggers, digital nomads, and even work as a secondary pc, if in case you have one other work PC or laptop computer that you simply don’t need to lug round a lot. The most important profit is the big catalog of third-party software program and video games for Home windows 10.

Lastly, whereas I want Microsoft was a bit extra revolutionary when it comes to the Surface Go’s design, I actually don’t have any grievance contemplating the portability and the flexibility of utilizing the show on a flat floor. The design and lightweight weight make the Surface Go a fascinating selection. However you can’t overlook that you need to pay a premium worth for the cellular processor and different attributes that mirror high quality.

In case your present Home windows laptop computer accompanies you on most of your adventures, you may simply wanna move on the Surface Go. I wouldn’t advocate this to MacBook customers both. For those who simply need a pill, you’ll be able to in all probability decide up an iPad 6 (beginning at Rs 26,999) or a first-gen iPad Professional (beginning at Rs 48,260) with Apple Pencil (Rs 7,600).

Moreover, for those who purchase the Sort Cowl with the Surface Go in India, you will get a 46% low cost on the former. This manner, the two bundles value Rs 42,696 and Rs 54,696.

microsoft surface go review

Whereas I haven’t examined out the cheaper variant, you’ll get the similar show however a comparatively slower eMMC storage and 4GB of RAM, which could trigger a dip in efficiency. Nevertheless, you’ll be able to nonetheless take pleasure in the Surface Pen in addition to the keyboard with the decrease variant. I might, nonetheless, advocate spending the additional Rs 12,000 and selecting the extra highly effective model.

  • Purchase Microsoft Surface Go (64GB) on Flipkart (Rs 37,999)
  • Purchase Microsoft Surface Go (128GB) on Flipkart (Rs 49,999)