LOS ANGELES – I’m blogging live from the Microsoft event at the Milk Studios in Los Angeles. (The following is in reverse chronological order.)
4:57: And that’s a wrap, folks.
4:56: Ballmer: “Because of Windows 8, the Surface is a PC. The Surface is a tablet. And the Surface is something new that we think people will absolutely love.”
4:55: Sinofsky: Surface for Windows RT will be available iaround the time of the Windows 8 general availability. Windows 8 Pro will come about 3 months later.
4:35: Panos Panay, GM of Microsoft Surface, says name of Surface comes from idea of hardware fading into the background so software can shine. Simplicity of design.
Says kickstand might fly in the face of seamless design. But said incorporating kickstand important. Designed kickstand to have the audible click and feel of operating things in a high-end car.
VaporMg case – the name for the magnesium casing – can be molded to .65 thickness, and incredible smoothness.
Panay talks about Touch Cover: 3 mm thin. “Had to be a cover you wanted to connect” and always be with you. Attaches with a magnet with an audible click. Can be folded back – and it has an accelerometer in it so when you fold it back (to use Surface as a tablet), it turns the keyboard off automatically.
4:33: Mike Angiulo, Microsoft CVP, introduces Windows Surface Pro. Dual high-performance antennas and receivers for better WiFi signals. Can read e-ink – and keeps handwriting smooth as it zooms in. Surface has 2 digitizers: one for touch and one for digital ink. So when you’re writing with a stylus, the screen image doesn’t move while you write on top of it. Support for USB 3.0 and super fast USB drive. Comes with integrated kickstand and Type Cover.
So: What was introduced today: Surface for Windows RT, Surface for Windows 8 Pro, and several integrated covers.
4:29: Surface comes with integrated stand and keyboard (called Touch Cover).
4:23: Windows President Steven Sinofsky takes the stage. Calls Surface “a tablet that works and plays the way you want it to.”
Sinofsky: Surface is 9.3 mm thick. Has USB peripherals. Edges are beveled at 22 degrees. “Surface is the first PC with a full magnesium case.” The liquid metal is formed into an ultra rigid, ultra light frame, Sinofsky says.
4:22: Ballmer introduces Microsoft Surface tablet
4:21: Ballmer says “With Windows 8, we wanted to give it our own” hardware-software innovative combination. “A whole new family of computing devices from Microsoft” — Surface.
4:18: Ballmer; “Our most successful (hardware) product has been the Xbox.” And developers pushing possibilities of Kinect. “This combination of hardware, software and peripherals… work together to deliver an unbelievable experience.”
He says he sees that working in the PC ecosystem too – hardware and software companies working together. “Those partnerships are essential.”
4:15: Ballmer talks about the dynamic of hardware and software pushing each other. Shows video taking a look back at Microsoft hardware.
4:12: Steve Ballmer takes the stage. Talks about how Windows has exceeded expectations, and now powers 1 billion PCs. “With Windows 8, we’ve reimagined the Windows product.”
3:32: I’m still in line to get into the mysterious Microsoft event at Milk Studios. Line’s about a block and a half long. I’ll update on this blog post as the event gets under way.