Surface 2.0

Soon after the successful launch of the first version of the Microsoft Surface, the researchers and developers started to work even harder on the device and started to work out charms. And as a result Surface 2.0 has just hit the market.

What’s New

The device has undergone a major facelift slimming down its to a merely 4″ thick which is very slimmer than the Surface 1.0 device which was almost 21″. Surface 1.0 was targeted to be a table top device making it unwelcoming in few places whereas the newer one can also be wall mounted. Let me run a comparison of the technical specification of both the devices.


Surface 1.0

Surface 2.0


Table Top

Table Top / Wall Mountable

Display Size



Screen Resolution

1024 X 768

1920 X 1080 (Full HD)

Hardware Spec (May vary from Devices)




Intel Core 2 Duo E6420 – Intel Xeon 5150

AMD X2 Dual Core 245E


2 GB – 4 GB




AMD Raedon HD6750M

Dimensions (W X H X D) Inches

42 X 22  X 21

43 X 27 X 4

 Both the devices supports Wi Fi and Bluetooth. The Samsung SUR40 is the official device available in the market as of now. Where as tailor made devices are provided as per the demand.

The new Surface device takes advantage of the Windows 7 GUI making it more efficient and rich than its predecessor. Also the device and applications are more streamlined to perform niche and touch response to perfection.

You can also now interact with the device using their PowerShell scripts and also remote administer device which would be one of the best feature for any developer.

The Surface 2.0 SDK also exposes more controls and features to the developers for building application which we will be talking through out this series. 

Pixel Sense

The Surface 2.0 uses the Pixel Sense technology; instead of relying on the camera. Pixel Sense on the current device act as the eye of the device which senses everything from touch, movements to objects and tags placed at the top of it.

Pixel Sense Technology

The Pixel Sense Technology Explained.


IR LEDs are placed below the screen which emits the infra-red light from the inner side of the screen. The object which is placed at the top of the screen reflects the IR light giving helping to identify the location and the physical appearance of the object in terms of pixel. These calculation is done by Pixel Sense processor which converts the reflection to the corresponding signal. The processor doesn’t rely on the reflection signal alone; to make a perfect outcome it also gets the input from various other sensors on the device and gets its match.

We will discuss more about the device internals in my next article.

Programming With Microsoft Surface 2.0 – Part 2
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