What is Microsoft Surface Go?

If you watch Microsoft’s User Go ad, you might think that this is a mini laptop. Sadly it is not, it is actually a tablet with The Type Cover keyboard that is not came with the tablet, you can get the keyboard itself for $100. While the Surface Go’s processing power is not as good as a laptop, but rather like Samsung Galaxy Tab S4.

The Surface Go use Windows 10 in S Mode installed, so you can choose it if you think Android and iOS are not enough. You can add Type Cover, Surface Pen and Surface Mobile Mouse if you feel like it, you have to spent some dollars for them though.

Design and Build

Someday, you maybe accidentally drop your tablet or you just give it to your children to play with it. Don’t worry, the Surface Go could survive a kiss or two with the floor with its sturdy magnesium frame.

The Surface Go’s stand is pretty stable too, you can prop it on the table while you are on the train without worrying the tablet will shaking. The flexibility of the stand’s hinge allowing you to title the device to various angles.

When we look at the outer design, the Surface Go looks simple and modern. With just a silver finish and shiny Windows logo on the back and a plain front. The speaker on the side of the device make a really loud sound. While the other things around the device is just the power and volume buttons.

The is a keyboard connector at the bottom of the Surface Go, so you do not have to bother connecting it with Bluetooth. The are also a headphone jack, a USB Type C and the Surface Connect Power port.


The Surface Go’s 10-inch IPS screen is solid. You can watch Netflix or YouTube without problems. The colors are punchy and realistic. The contrast is great, with the 1096:1 rating helping gloomy scenes stand out more vividly. Impressive black levels of 0.2057 nits also contribute to a decent overall image, especially in low-light scenes.

However, the Surface Go’s screen is not the brightest with just at 225 nits. You do not have to worry when using it indoor, but take the device outside on a sunny day and you’ll likely have to squint to see the screen.

Graphic designers and comic book creatives should be happy with the 92.80% sRGB score. Color temperature is admirable at 6382K, just a little on the warm side.  However, the Surface Go is not intended to professional photographers, Adobe RGN and DCI-P3 scores 65% and 68%. The lack of GPU and processors in sont suitable for photo editing.


The Surface Go use Windows S as an operating system, and you can only install certified apps from Microsoft Store. If you like to browsing with Edge and working with Microsoft Office it is no problem at all. But if you like more freedom, you can upgrade it to full Windows easily. You can just click the relevant link in the Microsoft Store and the switch is made, done.

After the installation of the full Windows, maybe you have a hard time differing it with Windows S, aside from the extra freedom. The performance such us battery life won’t be changed.

You can turn on the tablet mode for the touchscreen experience if you are not using Type Cover and Mobile Mouse. Your apps will presented as tiles on the desktop and the Surface Go is sensitive to multi-touch. With the help of Windows Hello, you can use face recognition to unlock the device by staring at the camera. If at some condition this is not working, you can use PIN/password.


The Surface Go’s performance is not the best though. Even with HP Envy x360 and LG Gram, is not the best thing to have in the device. This is not shocking because considering the processor of the Surface Go is Intel Pentium Gold 4415.

The Surface Go’s Geekbench single- and multi-core scores of 2091 and 3980 respectively are more comparable to rival tablets. That said, even the 9.7-inch iPad comfortably trumps the Surface Go with a Geekbench 4 single-core score of 3525 and Geekbench 4 multi-core score of 5972.

With the help of 8GB RAM in the Surface Go, simple task such as web browsing, writing documents or streaming videos is not an issue. You might encounter an issue when you open dozens of tabs at the same time.

With the integrated card and the low speed CPU, the Surface Go is not suitable for gaming either. Don’t be sad though, you still have the high-end storage model, the SSD boasts 128GB. The read speeds can reach 1116MB/s and write speeds 130MB/s.

Battery Life

The battery life is pretty decent in tablet mode. During the battery test on 150 nits brightness, the Surface Go can manage to stand on 10-hours mark. When you attach the Type Cover and working with Google Docs or just surfing the web, the Surface Go can just survive to 3h 30m. because of this you might want to buy Bluetooth keyboard and mouse instead.


When you want to work with the Surface Go, keyboard is an essential needs. Of  course you do not want to type on the touchscreen keypad. Is buying a keyboard that worth though? Well, it is slightly better then what you may expect from the Type Cover.

The touchpad is not bad too, even tough it is not what you can get from an actual laptop. What at the end, you have to spent a good $100 for it. With the same tag, you can get a lot better keyboard with various great features.

The next things are the Surface Mouse and Surface Pen. The Mouse is not a bad choice for the Surface Go with only $30. As I said before, going trough your works with the touchscreen is not a great experiences, especially if you got Windows 10 installed.

Meanwhile the Surface Pen is as not good as the Type Cover. With $100 you spent, it is not worth the money because the Surface Go is not aimed for a creative jobs

Should I buy the Surface Go?

The Surface Go is pretty light and have enough power to do basic tasks. It is pretty comfortable to use with the stand and Type Cover. But when you bought the Surface Go and the Type Cover, the cost is equivalent as the iPad and other accessories. Even though The Surface Go is cheaper than the Galaxy Tab S4, Samsung give S-Pen along with the tablet to make up the price.

Is there any reason too by Surface Go you ask? Well. The operating system is Windows 10 is a lot better than Android or iOS. If you like to do your works with it, Microsoft Office and Google Docs are up to your assignments.

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