By Alexandra Burlacu | Jun 19, 2013 04:07 PM EDT
Microsoft is reportedly planning to launch a second Surface RT tablet this year, boasting a Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 processor and Windows 8.1.
Last year, the software giant surprised everyone when it decided to make its first foray into the hardware race, launching the Surface and Surface RT tablets. While it didn't exactly sweep the market off its feet, Microsoft is apparently not done yet and it has big plans for the RT game.
The current Microsoft Surface RT runs the Windows RT operating system, i.e. a version specifically designed for ARM processors. Windows RT doesn't offer any direct app support for software written for full Windows 8, and Surface RT slates so far failed to leave a significant print on the market. Original reviews may have appreciated Microsoft's hardware, but the limited range of apps and the lack of a cellular-enabled model left Surface more or less in the gutter.
According to a new Bloomberg report, however, Microsoft plans to take things to the next level and launch some new versions of the Surface tablet, this time rocking Qualcomm's Snapdragon 800 chip with support for LTE connectivity. In other words, it seems that Microsoft is finally trying to add mobile Internet to its tablet range, likely in a bid to attract more buyers and boost sales of the not-so-popular slates.
The move should not come as much of a surprise, as Qualcomm recently announced that its new Snapdragon 800 processor also supports Microsoft's Windows 8.1 OS. That's the same software set to power the second-generation Surface RT tablet, running the show as Windows RT 8.1.
Windows RT 8.1., meanwhile, will bring new features to the upcoming Surface RT 2, including Outlook email, interface tweaks and an updated Internet Explorer. According to Bloomberg, however, Qualcomm will not be the only star of the show, as Microsoft will reportedly release another version of its second-generation Surface RT tablet with an Nvidia processor.
It remains unclear at this point just what specifications the Microsoft Surface RT 2 would sport. The original RT tablet features a 10.1-inch display, dual cameras and comes in 32GB or 64GB internal storage configurations. Bloomberg offered no details as to when Microsoft may announce its purported Surface RT 2 tablet. Keep in mind, however, that nothing is official just yet.
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