Windows 10 Hardware Event Rumour Roundup: This is Microsoft's Next Generation

By Darren Orf on at

Think of all the hardware Microsoft makes that’s not a peripheral. What you’re thinking is probably getting some kind of update announced today. That includes the wonderful Surface Pro laptop/tablet, but also the Microsoft Band and two new Lumias (finally). And maybe even a surprise or two, just to keep us guessing.

So, let’s see exactly what tech goodies we can most likely expect later today.

Surface Pro 4

Microsoft Surface laptop/tablet hybrid will most-likely make an appearance. For one, it’s been nearly a year and a half since Microsoft’s even updated the Pro series, though the less powerful Surface 3 came out only a few months back.

Since last year, many laptop makers seem to have found something worth building upon in the Surface series as we’ve seen things pop up like Lenovo’s IdeaPad Miix 700, HP’s Pavilion X2, and Dell’s currently rumoured (but probably not for long) 2-in-1 with a 4K display. You could even include Apple’s iPad Pro in this parade of imitation...or sincere form of flattery...whatever.

Arguably the biggest improvement for the Surface Pro 4 will be the chipset it ships with: Intel’s sixth-gen processors loftily named Skylake. The improved chip could mean the extra processing power the concept needs to really turn that tablet into a possible laptop killer.

On the outside, the hardware may also change and in some pretty big ways. It was a long process for Microsoft to finally find that workable 3:2 ratio display on the Surface Pro 3, so they probably won’t be deviating from it, but one Chinese tipster thinks a second, bigger Surface Pro 4 could be on the horizon, bumping the screen’s spec up from 12.2-inches to a whopping 14-inches. These new Surface devices may also come with 4K displays, much like Dell’s rumoured device.

A second line of rumours mentions that the Surface Pro could have ultra thin bezels similar to Dell’s XPS 13. This brings up another question. How do you hold an almost bezel-less tablet without it being an accidental touch nightmare? Easy: you make bezels appear when you want them. The feature is reportedly called “Smart Frame,” and when it’s undocked from a keyboard, a virtual bezel will pop up around the display so you can hold it as a tablet comfortably.

Rumour likelihood? Let’s give it a 7 out of 10. It’s very possible that Microsoft is returning to some 2013 tech showcased by Intel called North Cape that used that very method for making ultra thin bezels for 2-in-1s, as The Next Web mentions.

Windows 10 Hardware Event Rumor Roundup: This Is Microsoft's Next Generation

It’s also worth mentioning that the ever-present Surface Mini news is always around but still unlikely. And obviously, the Surface Pro 4 will be running Windows 10. Duh.

Lumia 950 and 950XL

Much like the Surface Pro 4, Windows Phone enthusiasts have been waiting quite sometime for any new flagship hardware from Microsoft. In fact, the Lumia 950 (Talkman) and Lumia 950XL (Cityman) will be the first flagship phones under the new Microsoft smartphone banner.

These phones will of course be running Windows 10 for mobile, which Microsoft is still working on actually, and thanks to several leaks from notorious leaker Evan Blass and Windows news guru Tom Warren at The Verge, we pretty much know exactly what we’ll be getting on Tuesday. Take a look:

Windows 10 Hardware Event Rumor Roundup: This Is Microsoft's Next GenerationLumia 950 (left) and Lumia 950XL

We even seem to have a rumoured full spec rundown as well:

Lumia 950

  • OS: Windows 10
  • Display: 5.2-inch WQHD OLED
  • Processor: Snapdragon 808, hexacore, 64-bit
  • Storage: 32GB internal, microSD card slot
  • Memory: 3GB of RAM
  • Cameras: 20MP PureView (rear); 5MP wide angle (front)
  • Battery: 3000mAh (removable)
  • Extras: USB Type-C, white, black with matte polycarbonate

Lumia 950XL

  • OS: Windows 10
  • Display: 5.7-inch WQHD OLED
  • Processor: Snapdragon 810, octacore, 64-bit
  • Storage: 32GB internal, microSD card slot
  • Memory: 3GB of RAM
  • Cameras: 20MP PureView (rear); 5MP wide angle (front)
  • Battery: 3340mAh (removable)
  • Extras: USB Type-C, white, black (and blue?) with matte polycarbonate

If those specs hold true, that would make these new Lumias just as powerful as any other smartphone, Android or iPhone, out there. Of course, the biggest barrier will still be that app store, which Windows 10’s universal apps will definitely help, but it remains to be seen if it will be enough.

But hey! Looks like the battery will be removable, an oft-lamented missing feature on many smartphones nowadays:

Windows 10 for mobile will also have Windows Hello and Continuum support, so where the specs are pretty run-of-the-mill for a 2015 flagship, the mobile software could have plenty of surprises in store that make Windows Phone truly unique compared to the competition.

There’s also been hints of a Surface-branded smartphone that would be even more premium than the Lumia line, but that rumour has been around since at least 2012 and seems relatively cold at this point.

Here’s one more shot of the new Lumias, you know, for fun:

Windows 10 Hardware Event Rumor Roundup: This Is Microsoft's Next Generation

Microsoft Band

Last year’s Microsoft Band was a neat little gadget that was just a bit too bulky and inconvenient. Microsoft’s reportedly going take another whack at it with a brand new wrist wearable, probably called the Band 2.

A leaked image from Windows Insider in Spain shows that the Band, at the very least, will be much more wearable this time around now that it has a curved body and display.

Windows 10 Hardware Event Rumor Roundup: This Is Microsoft's Next Generation

Windows Insider also notes that the Band 2 could be getting even more sensors, including an altimeter. The renders also suggest that some sensors are still embedded in the band so changeable strap seems incredibly unlikely. Also like last year’s model, the two hardware buttons appear in the same location though slightly redesigned. So many of the cool updates for the Band 2 are hopefully coming on the software side of things, like third-party app integration for example.

Windows 10 Hardware Event Rumor Roundup: This Is Microsoft's Next Generation

A Few Other Things


Recent rumours also suggest that this Windows 10 event might not be just a hardware party. A Google spokesperson is supposedly attending the launch and will announce Google’s plan to integrate Windows 10 more fully with Google apps, like Hangouts, YouTube, and Google Voice. This would do wonders for Windows 10, and especially the mobile side of things, which still lacks many of the key apps people use for work and just basic communication.

With lawsuits finally dropped between the two huge corporations and Microsoft aggressively building apps for both Android and iOS, it seems more likely than ever that Google could finally be bringing some of its software to Windows.


On the more unlikely scale of things, we could see a slimmer Xbox just in time for Christmas, but that seems unlikely as of right now especially since Xbox’s head honcho Phil Spencer pretty much shutdown that rumour as “not true” on Twitter.


It’s even possible that Hololens could see some updates and some floor time. Alex Kipman, the big brains behind Hololens, hinted on Twitter that the hardware event tonight is going to be EPIC:

Microsoft Hololens has also sent out emails to Hololens Insiders about watching the event, according to WinBeta. So who knows! We could maybe get a target retail time or details on different editions for enterprise and education.

Of course all of this is hearsay with some rumours being more concrete than others. Luckily, we only have to wait a little while longer before all will be revealed.