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Surface Pro Mini likely to be announced with Surface Mini

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Several industry outlets reported that the Surface Mini will officially be announced on May 20. They also announced that there will be other Surface devices announced, including one with an Intel chip. Los Angeles Industry Analyst Paul Mueller has revealed to this column that the device will likely be smaller (and thinner) version of the Surface Pro 2.

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"The Surface Mini is what news outlets picked up on. But the real star of the show on May 20 will be a smaller version of the Surface Pro 2. I have talked to people who have seen the device--it is smaller, thinner, but very powerful. It will run Windows 8.1 and will definitely give the iPad a run for its money, though it will be slightly more expensive," Mueller tells us.

A Surface Pro Mini makes a lot of sense. Dell, Lenovo, and even Toshiba have released 7 to 8-inch versions of Windows 8.1 tablets. Dell has had great success with the Venue 8 Pro, the first small Windows 8.1 tablet to have any type of success in the marketplace. However, some people balked at the outdated 1280 x 800 resolution display. Mueller tells us that the new Surface Pro will have a 1080p screen.

Even though Microsoft has been struggling since the release of Windows 8, the Surface Pro has been successful. In fact, the Surface Pro 2 is, by far, the biggest selling Windows 8/8.1 computer over the past two years (though some people still consider it a tablet). Microsoft is working on a thinner Surface Pro 3, but that won't be available until the fall. The Surface Pro Mini is a completely different project.

The Surface Pro Mini announcement will come on May 20, with the product actually appearing in stores within two weeks after the announcement. Are you excited about the Surface Pro Mini? Tell us in the Comments section.

Twitter: @ddeino