Microsoft has launched the Surface Laptop Go 2, a minor improvement to its entry-level laptop. The 12.4-inch notebook, which is now available for pre-order and will be ready for purchase on June 7, will start at $599 with Intel’s Core i5-1135G7 processor.
From the appearance, the Surface Laptop Go hasn’t altered much since its launch in 2020. It has the same 1536 x 1024 display that we criticized for being less than 1080p. A fingerprint reader is still there on the power button, but not in the base setup. However, based on the photographs, there is a new sage green color with shades of gray and blue that I believe looks rather lovely.
The 2.48-pound laptop, like the original, is positioned as a competition to Chromebooks in schools as well as a potential low-cost solution for corporations, albeit with Windows 11 onboard (Enterprise customers can still get Windows 10). If it performs as expected in testing, the company believes it will last up to 13.5 hours on a single charge, which would be more than enough for a school or workday.
The Core i5 with 4GB of RAM and 128GB of SSD storage is most likely included in the $599 starting price. This is more expensive than the original’s $549 launch price, although that model contained 64GB of slower eMMC storage. I believe that having twice as much storage that is considerably faster is worth the extra $50.
The transition from Intel’s 10th Generation “Ice Lake” CPUs to 11th Generation “Tiger Lake” CPUs should provide a significant boost in graphics performance, given that’s when Intel shifted to their Iris Xe integrated GPUs.
The entry-level device, like the previous generation Surface Laptop Go, does not contain a fingerprint reader. The keyboard appears to be the same excellent one found on the 2020 laptop, which Microsoft boasts has “30% greater key travel than a MacBook Air.”
Aside from sage, the Surface Laptop Go 2 will also be available in ice blue, sandstone, and platinum
Inside, there are a few more alterations. Microsoft updated the Surface Laptop Go 2 to be more repairable. The SSD, as well as the keyboard and trackpad, display, battery, and Surflink cable, which is used for audio, are still removable (though Microsoft still recommends using an approved service provider).
Except for the battery, all of those parts are intended to be replaced by a technician using Microsoft’s service guidelines. The battery may still need to be delivered to Microsoft or one of its service providers.