When Microsoft released the Surface with Windows RT at the end of October last year, it promised to release a more high-performance version based on Intel’s processor within 90 days. Now, just a little over three months later, it’s finally time for the debut of the Microsoft Surface with Windows 8 Pro.

A full PC with Ultrabook-like specs and the form-factor of a tablet, the Surface Pro is ideal for people who want the best of both worlds. It’s not without some compromises – the high-end specs and thin design mean you’ll only get about five hours of use on a full charge – but it’s still an excellent piece of hardware. In addition to running Windows 8 Pro, the Surface Pro comes with a stylus and a slightly modified design based on user feedback.

I’m really excited about the launch of the Surface Pro, since it offers full compatibility with all of your favorite apps and games. I don’t usually need to use desktop applications like Outlook and Photoshop on a tablet – that’s what my desktop PC is for – but they’ve certainly come in handy on occasion. If you’re looking for a companion device, the Surface RT is the way to go. But if you want a true laptop replacement which also doubles as a tablet, look no further than the Surface Pro.

Microsoft Surface with Windows 8 Pro is available at the Microsoft Store, as well as other retail locations including Best Buy and Staples. You can pick up the 64GB model for $899 or the 128GB model for $999 (I highly recommend reading Ed Bott’s piece on Surface storage space). A number of limited edition accessories are also being released to celebrate the launch.

Will you be picking up a Surface Pro?

[Microsoft]

Full disclosure: I am a member of the #IntelTablets #TabletCrew program, but any and all opinions expressed on this site are that of my own.