Forget the 15-inch MacBook Air, the Surface Laptop 6 could steal its thunder

a person in a pink jacket holding a pink laptop
(Image credit: Microsoft)

Microsoft’s Surface Laptop 6 seems to be charging ahead, with the upcoming refresh for the Surface Laptop 5 and new specification leaks revealing some fascinating aspects about the upcoming models.

According to Wccftech, Microsoft will be releasing two versions of its Surface Laptop 6, one with a 13.5-inch display and 2256 x 1504 resolution, and the other a 15-inch model with 2496 x 1664 resolution. The CPU options are rumored to be the Intel Core i5-1335U and the Core i7-1355U. The 13.5-inch can be configured with both options, while the 15-inch can only feature the more powerful i7 chip.

Another reveal from Wccftech is that, apparently, the 13.5-inch Surface Laptop 6 will last for an hour longer than the 15-inch model. If true, this means that the former will run for a whopping 21 hours compared to the already incredible 20-hour battery life the latter sports. 

Other specs revealed include RAM in 8GB, 16GB, and 32GB LPDDR5X configurations, though unfortunately they cannot be user-upgraded. The SSD, however, which is offered in both 256GB and up to 512GB, can be upgraded. As for port selection, we have a USB-C Thunderbolt 4 port, two USB-A 3.1 ports, a 3.5mm audio jack, and of course the Surface Connect port.

If you prefer a wider color selection, the smaller model has four to choose from: Platinum with an Alcantara palm rest, Matte Black with a metal palm rest, Emerald Brown with a metal palm rest, and Sandstone with a metal palm rest. The 15-inch, however, only offers two: Platinum with a metal palm rest and Matte Black with a metal palm rest.

Microsoft trying to compete with the MacBook Air? 

It’s interesting to note that both the 15-inch display size and the increased battery life are two specs that are in direct competition with Apple’s MacBook Air. The former is thanks to consistent rumors about a 15-inch MacBook Air that could be unveiled during WWDC 2023 on June 5. 

Battery life is something that has given the M-series of MacBooks a big advantage over competing laptops. The Surface Laptop 6 arriving to challenge that supremacy could end up being a huge deal, and could even inspire Apple to look toward other specs to improve on its MacBook line.

This is especially important as recent reports suggested that one of those improvements, a Gen 8 OLED panel upgrade for both the MacBook Air and Pro models, could be nixed due to declining MacBook revenue. Not only that, but the M3 silicon that was supposed to be paired with the 15-inch MacBook seems to not be happening, which is another market advantage Apple is letting slip by.

Going by these grapevine rumblings, Microsoft has a huge chance to cement its place in the market. Hopefully, this all turns out to be true, which means that consumers would have better options and Apple would be forced to adapt or risk worsening sales.

Allisa James
Computing Staff Writer

Named by the CTA as a CES 2023 Media Trailblazer, Allisa is a Computing Staff Writer who covers breaking news and rumors in the computing industry, as well as reviews, hands-on previews, featured articles, and the latest deals and trends. In her spare time you can find her chatting it up on her two podcasts, Megaten Marathon and Combo Chain, as well as playing any JRPGs she can get her hands on.