When the Surface 2 and Surface Pro 2 tablets launch next week users won’t have to wait until morning to get their hands on versions of them. Microsoft says it’ll hold midnight releases at ten of its stores across the United States.
Beginning at 10 p.m. on October 21st, Microsoft Stores will open their doors to users for Surface related challenges and games in the run up to the Surface Pro and Surface Pro 2’s launch at midnight. Users will be able to sign up for different challenges and compete in trivia contests to earn prizes. Microsoft says it will fly one winner to Orlando, Florida for the grand opening of a new Microsoft Store in that area. Artist Pitbull will perform at the Orlando store’s opening.
While all the company’s 70 stores will hold events and giveaways later this month, only ten specific stores will open for the midnight Surface launch, according to today’s press release. Midnight launch stores include Bellevue Square in Seattle, Westfield Centre in San Francisco, Scottsdale Fashion Square in Scottsdale, Dadeland Mall in Miami, Lennox Square Mall in Atlanta, The Shops at Prudential center in Boston, The Westchester in White Plains, The Domain in Austin, The Fashion Centre at Pentagon City in Arlington and Oakbrook Center Mall in Oak Brook, Illinois.
The Surface 2 and Surface Pro 2 are upgrades for the Surface RT and Surface Pro that shipped last year. The Surface 2 features a new NVIDIA Tegra 4 processor along with an upgraded high-definition display and USB 3.0. Those changes aside, the device is still powered by Windows RT. It’s the version of Windows that forces users to only download applications from Microsoft’s Windows Store. The Surface 2 begins at $449.
The Surface Pro 2’s upgrades include a new Intel Haswell processor and larger storage configurations than its predecessor. Microsoft says that the processor upgrade means that Surface Pro 2 users can expect 75% more battery life when compared with its predecessor. The Surface Pro 2 begins at $849.
Users looking for quality hardware, Microsoft Office and integration with Microsoft’s other services could find the Surface 2 to be well worth Microsoft’s asking price.