In a blog post, Microsoft Corporation’s (NASDAQ:MSFT) Windows and Devices team announced the company will be holding a special event on Oct. 26. It has been a while since MSFT made any major product announcements, so what can we expect to see two weeks from now?
There are plenty of theories, but here are a few of the most likely.
New Surface PC to Take on the iMac
Photos have leaked online of a new Surface-branded keyboard and mouse.
The company has been always offered a range of wireless accessories. And recently, in wake of vulnerabilities discovered in millions of older wireless keyboards, MSFT has been heavily promoting its line of AES encrypted keyboards.
However … Given the credibility it has gained as a premium hardware designer after the release of the Surface Pro tablet, then the Surface Book laptop, a new Surface All-in-One PC seems highly likely. That keyboard and mouse may sell separately, but would likely be pack-ins included with the new desktop computer.
PC sales have been in the dumps, but MSFT has proven it has the design chops to steal premium device dollars from its OEMs in the Windows tablet and laptop spaces. It’s only natural it would want to take on the desktop PC as well.
But by going the route of releasing a minimalist, All-in-One Surface PC, Microsoft gets a device that looks infinitely sexier than just a box.
Just as importantly, it would have an option to take on rival Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) and its popular iMac line. A Surface PC using the All-in-One approach — which actually shows up in a patent filing uncovered by Windows Central — would have appeal to professionals, especially when paired with a Surface pen for interaction. Apple’s iMac lacks this capability altogether.
The Verge and other outlets are looking for the Microsoft Event to include a Windows 10 component. Specifically, MSFT is expected to outline its plans for two major feature releases in 2017, code-named “Redstone 2” and “Redstone 3.”
The general theme of the Windows 10 presentation is expected to be the operating system’s tight integration with Widows devices. MSFT will be pushing this as a productivity and convenience advantage. There could also be some Xbox gaming news, focused on Windows 10 integration.
Surface Pro 5, Surface Phone, Band 3?
Nope, Nope and cancelled (supposedly).
It looks as though MSFT isn’t going to show off a refreshed Surface Pro — or Surface Book, for that matter. Instead, rumors have Microsoft playing nice with its OEM manufacturing partners (perhaps repairing some damage done by the news of the new Surface PC), instead featuring their laptops onstage.
The Microsoft Band 3 fitness tracker apparently exists — at least spy shots have leaked of it — but the device has been cancelled, at least for now. Microsoft has gone on record saying existing Band 2 inventory has been sold through with no plans to replace it this year. Additionally, the company has removed the Band SDK for developers and is purging references from its webstore.
If you want to hear what MSFT has to reveal at the October Microsoft event, check the website for a live stream.
For all the details without having to listen to two hours of how cool Windows 10 is or how the new Surface PC is going to kick the iMac off trendy desktops everywhere, check back here for our post-event wrap-up.
As of this writing, Brad Moon did not hold a position in any of the aforementioned securities.