Microsoft unveils new Surface tablets


Microsoft's Surface 2 is seen during the launch of their Surface 2 tablets in New York September 23, 2013. Photo - Reuters/Shannon Stapleton

Microsoft unveiled two new versions of its Surface tablet Monday, aiming to ramp up its efforts in mobile computing after a failed launch a year ago.

The Surface 2 and Surface Pro 2 have "significant updates, including improvements to processing power and battery life," Microsoft said in a statement as it unveiled the devices at a New York event.

The changes represent "the revamp we need," said Microsoft vice president Panos Panay as he showed the new tablets to news media.

The launch is Microsoft's second stab at the growing tablet market after the Surface released last year failed to make a dent in a market dominated by Apple's iPad and various devices using the Google Android operating system.

Panos said the new device includes Microsoft's revamped Windows 8.1 system, the popular Outlook program and a whopping 100,000 applications, up from the 10,000 in the previous version.

The Surface 2 will start at $449 and the Surface Pro 2 at $899 for US customers. It will be sold initially in 22 markets, with pre-orders starting Tuesday.

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