Apple and Microsoft have been competing in the operating system space for decades, but they've had competitive hardware in recent years. The MacBook and Surface lines both have their own specifics and strengths that it's not easy to choose between them. To give you some more solid recommendations, let's put theagainst the in a classic head-to-head.
One is an acclaimed 2-in-1, the other an iconic laptop workhorse with classic Apple style. What will come out of the top when the dust settles?
Once you've figured out which model is right for you, check out the best MacBook deals and Microsoft Surface Pro sales available right now.
Leading the way in laptop style for generations, the MacBook Pro is helping to redefine what a premium laptop looks and feels like. While there are many more competitors for the best-looking laptop today, the MacBook Pro stands out as an exquisitely built machine. While we don't quite see the point of the Touch Bar just yet, the general appearance of Apple's MacBook Pro is top notch.
The Surface Pro 7 is disappointing in terms of its design. While we've passed the smaller design iterations in the past, we've finally had enough this year – as we said in our review, "The minor revisions to the Surface Pro 7 are hardly worth a numerical increase from 6 to 7." It still has large, unsightly bezels that seem increasingly out of place in 2019. In a laptop market where only millimeters of extra material is so often seen around displays, it feels downright outdated. It's also a bit too heavy for comfortable tablet use.
While the Surface Pro 7 may stick to some stylistic elements of the past, its inputs are a bit more appealing. The Type Cover ($ 129) is a fantastic must-have accessory if you really want to type. The touchpad is also excellent; It's quite simply one of our favorites among all Windows laptops.
The MacBook Pro's keyboard is a disappointment by comparison. Apple has gone through several iterations of its butterfly key design and while it is improving, we are still unimpressed. Sticky and broken keys are common and the typing experience is far from our favorite. Stiff, overly flat keys don't give you the tactile feedback you need for a comfortable and efficient typing experience. Fortunately, the touchpad is much better. So, if you want to do more than just type and browse, the lackluster keyboard might not be too much of an issue for you.
When it comes to connections, the Apple device has two or four Thunderbolt 3 connections and a headphone jack on the 13-inch version. This means you will likely need adapters for a variety of external devices. Microsoft has finally decided on USB-C, so that the Surface Pro 7 has a USB-C port, a USB-A 3.0 port, a headphone jack, a Surface Connect port, a Surface Type Cover port and a microSDXC port. Card reader features. This means that the Mini DisplayPort output from Surface Pro will be lost for 6 days.
The Surface Pro 7 is also a 2-in-1 – and our preferred 2-in-1 – which means you can drop the Type Cover and use it as a very functional tablet. The MacBook Pro just can't do that. It is 100 percent a laptop and the Surface Pro 7 can be available within a very short time. Windows 10 tablet mode doesn't offer many benefits, but is serviceable as an add-on to the entire Windows 10 experience.
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Thecomes with a dual-core Intel Core i3-1005G1 CPU, 4GB of RAM, and 128GB of SSD storage, and costs $ 749. You can swap out the processor for an i5-1035G4 or i7-1065G7, add 8GB or 16GB of RAM, and have up to 1TB of SSD storage for $ 899 to $ 2,299.
Every size and configuration of MacBook Pro is now equipped with the Touch Bar. Apple updated its entry-level model with 8th generation quad-core Intel i5 processors in early 2019. You also get 8GB of RAM and a 128GB SSD, plus Intel Iris Plus Graphics 645 for $ 1,299. With a 2.8 GHz Intel Core i7 CPU as well as 16 GB RAM and up to 2 TB super-fast SSD storage, the maximum can be achieved. That will bring you back $ 3,099.
While the entry-level MacBook Pro costs a full $ 550 more than the entry-level Surface Pro 7, you get a much more powerful processor and twice as much RAM. If you upgrade the Surface Pro 7 to an Intel i5 processor and 8GB of RAM, it'll cost you $ 899, which is still significantly less than the MacBook Pro. In addition, Microsoft uses Intel's 10th generation chips compared to the 8th generation MacBook Pro versions. Our test found that this was a "significant" step over the Surface Pro 6.
MacBooks have always been known for their amazing displays, and the latest generation MacBook Pro doesn't disappoint. It's bright and high-contrast with a decent resolution of 2,560 x 1,600. It's also fantastically colorful, with extensive color gamut support and an impressively low color error value. The smaller 12.3-inch display of the Surface Pro 7 offers a higher resolution, a much higher pixel density (2,736 x 1,824 and 267 pixels per inch) and is also bright and colorful. It's not quite as noticeably bright as the MacBook Pro, but it's not far behind.
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At 11.5 x 7.9 x 0.33 inches and just 1.7 pounds in tablet mode (1.74 pounds with the i7 chip and about 2.4 pounds with the Type Cover), the Surface Pro 7 is that slimmer and lighter device. The MacBook Pro is a sleek and relatively lightweight laptop measuring 11.97 x 8.36 x 0.59 inches and weighing 3.02 pounds. It can't match how easy it is to transport the Surface Pro 7, however.
Both the MacBook Pro and the Surface Pro 7 are a bit disappointing in terms of battery life. The Apple laptop lasted a little over 10 hours in our 1080p video loop test and has a lower capacity battery than previous versions. The Surface Pro 7 also took a step back and took almost an hour and a half less than its predecessor in light web surfing. Either device can get you through a work day, but you may find yourself reaching for the power cord sooner than desired.
The best 2-in-1 is the better laptop
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It's rare that a 2-in-1 can be serious competition for a dedicated laptop, but that all changes change when the 2-in-1 you're talking about is one of the best, that we've ever tested. The Surface Pro 7 has its disadvantages, namely the smaller screen and the bulky frame. But where it excels, it steams past Apple's MacBook Pro, offering more versatility and keyboard comfort, making it a more enjoyable device for longer periods of time and a far more portable device. The lightweight tablet mode is the cherry on top.
If you need more grunts and prefer the sleek looks and predictive port selection of the MacBook Pro, this is certainly a great option – although we could try tempting you with the MacBook Air or getting you to the more powerful 16-inch MacBook Pro . Compared to the 13-inch MacBook Pro, however, the Surface Pro 7 is a better all-round device. Even with the must-have Type Cover accessories, it's cheaper to configure it with comparable hardware, especially if you need additional storage space.
The MacBook Pro looks and feels that way, but the Surface Pro 7 delivers where it can't.