By Vamien McKalin | May 02, 2013 09:38 AM EDT
The best-selling Windows 8 Pro/RT devices on the market right now are the Surface tablets from Microsoft, so it comes as no surprise that a report claims the company is working on next-generation upgrades for release later in the year.
According to DigiTimes, the new tablets will be announced at Microsoft's Build developer conference in late June, and these new tablets will have a 7- to 9-inch display. If there's any accuracy in this report, it could mean Microsoft is preparing a tablet to compete with the iPad Mini and the plethora of 7-inch Android tablets.
We've been hearing of a 7-inch Surface tablet for quite some time; this rumor got even more interesting after we learned that Windows Blue would allow for the support of smaller displays, which would make for smaller and cheaper Windows 8/RT devices. The device is expected to come packed with an ARM-based processor, 288MB of RLDRAM 2 and a 7-inch display with 1280 x 720 pixels resolution. The operating system will likely be a custom version of Windows, which would work well, since the main idea behind this tablet is gaming and media consumption.
The focus at Microsoft's Build Conference would be Windows 8.1: by then we should learn more about Microsoft's 7-inch tablet plans and a possible announcement of the release date and price of the machine.
Furthermore, Microsoft is said to have plans to update its current Surface Pro tablet with the newest and greatest Intel chips. These chipsets should not only boost performance, but also boost battery life, as the current device's main weak spot is its lackluster battery performance. It's quite unforgivable in this day and age for a tablet to have battery performance comparable to a dedicated gaming laptop.
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