Microsoft's back in the tablet race, folks.

Monday the company pulled back the curtain on a small family of slates called Surface. Available in two flavors -- one all business for a full-featured install of Windows 8 Pro and another with Windows RT for mobile processors -- Surface is the tech behemoth's answer to the Apple iPad.

But how do the new Windows-based slates compare to Apple's high-selling game changer?

Well, for starters, the Surface are both larger machines. The screens measure in at 10.6-inches (with what's described to be full HD resolutions in Microsoft's press materials). Despite that win in size, the Surface twins are much heavier than the iPad, about 1.5 for the Windows RT version vs. 1.44 pounds for Apple's slate. The Windows 8 Pro model is nearly 2 pounds.

Some other points of difference include storage size: the Surface with Window Pro can include a 128GB hard drive. Since that more robustly equipped model is designed to have a more powerful, laptop-compatible processor, the added storage could be a welcome addition.

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Of course, that would depend on how much it costs to take a Surface tablet home, and we've got no word on that yet. For those of you already stoked for the Surface, here's how Microsoft's new tablets stand up against the iPad 3.


iPad 3

Surface (Windows RT)

Surface (Windows Pro)

Price $499  TBA TBA
CPU  Apple A5X dual-core  Nvidia Tegra 3 Intel Core i5
OS iOS 5 Windows 8 RT Windows 8 Pro
Display 9.7 inches 
(2048 x 1536)
10.6 inches 
(Resolution unknown)
 10.6 inches 
(Resolution unknown)
9.5 x 7.31 x 0.37 0.37 inches thick  0.37 inches thick
Weight (pounds)  1.44  1.5  1.5
16GB, 32GB, 
32GB, 64GB  64GB, 128GB
Ports 30-pin  microSD, USB 2.0, Micro HD Video, 2x2 MiMO Antennae  microSDXC, USB 3.0, Mini DisplayPort, 2x2 MiMO Antennae

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