Microsoft has recently held a very underwhelming Surface Event 2022 with the Surface Laptop 5, Surface Pro 9, and Surface Studio 2+. However, the company is today launching a much more interesting piece of non-Surface hardware. Known as the Windows Dev Kit 2023, this is Microsoft’s Project Volterra brought to life.

It is also a Mac Mini competitor of sorts. Sure, that name is a bunch of boring, but the Windows Dev Kit 2023 is actually interesting. It is the next step of Microsoft’s Windows on Arm push, and acts as a mini PC running on an Arm chipset.

That is Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 8cx Gen 3 platform, coupled with other specs such as NVMe storage and 32GB of RAM. In terms of connectivity, there are three USB-A 3.2 Gen 2 ports on the rear, ad another pair on the site. There is also a Mini DisplayPort and an Ethernet port.

Borrowing from the Surface Pro 9, the device also packs a neural processing unit (NPU), allowing developers to run their own hardware AI tasks on the device.

“More apps, tools, frameworks, and packages are being ported to natively target Windows on Arm and will be arriving over the coming months,” says Pavan Davuluri, CVP, Windows Silicon & System Integration. “In the meantime, thanks to Windows 11’s powerful emulation technology, developers will be able to run many unmodified x64 and x86 apps and tools on their Windows Dev Kit.”

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This device will allow developers to create native AI apps for the cloud. Volterra is a relatively non-descript mini PC that seems to take design cues from Apple’s Mac Mini. Microsoft points out it is stackable, so developers can link multiple Project Volterra units together.

Windows Dev Kit 2023 is available from today for $599. It is available in Australia, Canada, China, France, Germany, Japan, the United Kingdom, and the US.

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