AMD Actually Did It

Illustration for article titled AMD Actually Did It
Photo: Alex Cranz (Gizmodo)

Microsoft is making a 15-inch Surface Laptop for people who needed more screen and power than the 13.5-inch version, and beyond being bigger, the 15-inch Surface Laptop 3 will also offer AMD inside.


This is kind of amazing.

AMD doesn’t really do flagship devices. That’s something we noted when the rumors of an AMD-powered Surface Laptop first appeared. AMD might make high-quality CPUs and GPUs, and its products might be popular in the gaming sector. They also power the two most popular gaming consoles (the PS4 and Xbox One), but big flagship devices like the Dell XPS and Lenovo ThinkPad lines typically don’t lean on AMD.

So the Microsoft Surface Laptop—even just one version of it—relying on AMD is a pretty big deal. In the public consciousness, AMD has been trailing behind Intel for nearly a decade. It’s the “other” CPU maker. It isn’t the headline component maker in headline laptops.

That changes with the Surface Laptop 3, whose new 15-inch version features an AMD Ryzen 7 CPU branded as the AMD Ryzen Microsoft Surface Processor.

The 13.5-inch Surface Laptop 3 also offers a 10th-gen Ice Lake 4-core CPU that Microsoft Chief Product Officer Panos Panay claims is two times more powerful than the Surface Laptop 2 and three times more powerful than the current MacBook Air.


Panay claims the new Surface Laptop 3 will charge from 0 to 80-percent in under an hour and maintain all-day battery life.

Beyond new guts and a bigger version, the Laptop 3 has a 20-percent larger trackpad than the Laptop 2 and improved repairability.


We’re hoping to get more details after the event, but if you need Surface Laptop immediately, it’s available for pre-order now and will ship October 22. The 13.5-inch version will start at $1,000, and the 15-inch product will start at $1,200. You’ll be able to choose either the usual Alacantara fabric palm rest or a new “sandstone” machined aluminum option.

Senior Consumer Tech Editor. Trained her dog to do fist bumps. Once wrote for Lifetime. Tips encouraged via Secure Drop, Proton Mail, or DM for Signal.


AMD gets a whole lot of credit but also Intel has apparently been asleep for the last 5 years releasing the same damn Skylake 14 nm processors over and over again with tiny incremental improvements. Meanwhile AMD is straight pumping out 7 nm CPUs. So mad props to them for clearly out engineering the big giant.  Here’s to hoping that even more companies jump to AMD and ARM, and hopefully that wakes up Intel so they can start innovating again.