Microsoft Surface Laptop Go 2 review: A mid-range laptop that packs a punch

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Since the release of the original Microsoft Surface Laptop Go in 2020, hybrid portable tablets have been causing a stir in the tech world. They are sleeker and more compact than a laptop and have many more features than a standalone tablet. It is also the perfect model for small budgets.

The Surface Laptop Go 2 capitalized on that frenzy and is an upgrade from the first version. With a higher price tag, at £529, this laptop sits firmly in the mid-range category. It comes with all the features you’d expect, plus a few extras (more of which below), making it a great buy for those who need something to use on the go that won’t blow the budget.

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Specifications at a glance

  • Filter: 12.4-inch Pixel Sense display
  • Resolution: 1536 × 1024 (148 DPI)
  • Aspect ratio: 3:2
  • Processor: Quad-Core Intel Core i5-1135G7 (11th Gen)
  • Storage: 128 GB or 256 GB SSD
  • Memory: 4 GB or 8 GB of RAM
  • Camera: 720P front-facing
  • Connectivity: wifi 6 (ax), Bluetooth 5.1, USB-A, USB-C, headphones, Surface Connect, fingerprint sensor
  • Operating system: Windows 1
  • Dimensions: 10.95″ x 8.12″ x 0.62″
  • Lester: 1127 grams
  • Chart: Intel Iris Xe

Design

The new design is impressive. Available in four different stylish colors – platinum, sage, ice blue and sandstone, this laptop looks like it means business. For those looking for something lightweight, it doesn’t get any better than this as the whole device weighs just 1127g. In addition to its lightweight feel, it’s incredibly slim and is generally much more compact than other models – perfect for carrying to and from the office or while travelling.

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At 12.4 inches, we were slightly disappointed with the screen size. Compared to other similarly priced laptops, the screen is smaller and more tablet-like; a drawback for anyone using it as their primary laptop, but great if you need it on call for entertainment and light remote work. However, the size is also compensated by the higher 3:2 ratio which makes it suitable for everyday use.

The keyboard and trackpad were two standout design features. Both worked wonderfully. The keyboard feels like a full-size version, and the precision of the trackpad is impeccable.

Characteristics

When it comes to everyday use, this laptop comes close to perfect. It has a vibrant display, color contrast, and higher resolution than similar models, making it perfect for social media streaming and scrolling.

A marked improvement over the first model, the Go 2 features a 720p webcam and mic for crisp, clear sound, meaning those Zoom meetings have never been easier. The speakers also produce decent sound quality and volume, but won’t replace the need for a separate speaker.

Unlike its predecessor, there are no overheating issues or loud humming in the background, and it’s 23% faster.

Unfortunately, what’s the same is battery life. It still lags behind other laptops, with a full charge offering a light day’s use (around six hours), but it’d be risky not having a charger handy; far from ideal if you want to travel light.

The fingerprint scanner and one-touch login are a handy addition and add to the laptop’s efficiency.

We could open large documents normally and use multiple apps without issue. It’s clear that updates over the past few years have helped streamline Windows 11 and there don’t seem to be any software issues.

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Verdict

Overall, the design and feel of the laptop is remarkably similar to the iPad pro, but when it comes to how the Go 2 actually works, it works much more like a PC than a tablet thanks to its Windows processor.

New additions and improvements over the first version make this laptop worth the extra money, and of all Microsoft products, it’s the best value for money. If they could increase the battery life that would be perfect.

If you’re looking for a laptop for school or college, then little beats the Go 2 – it’s portable, great for note-taking via the keyboard or touchscreen stylus, and has all the firepower of Windows 11 behind him. It’s not just for students: as business travel resumes and telecommuting days are a permanent reality for many, a lightweight laptop that meets the demands of your work is an absolute must, and this laptop reliable will not let you down.

Or buy

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