Microsoft To Ship Surface Power Covers For Extended Battery Life Starting March 19

If you've been holding off on buying a Surface, perhaps the thought of a tremendous boost in battery life will sway you. As the tablet wars move into more granular battles, Microsoft has placed a new "Power Cover" up for pre-order on its site. In essence, this is a Type Cover (a cover that contains a tactile keyboard), but with additional batteries built in.

Lenovo itself offered something similar for prior Windows tablets, and now, Microsoft will do similar for its Surface Pro, Surface 2, and Surface Pro 2 tablets. According to the product page, the accessory is set to extend one's Surface battery life by up to 70%. The Power Cover weighs 0.55 pounds and measures 9.75mm thick, and sadly, do not have backlit keys.

They'll ship initially in the United States, Canada, and Japan in around a week, but the $199 asking price will likely spook some prospective buyers. You'll need to be a pretty serious road warrior to justify spending that sum for a bit of extra battery life, but those who frequently find themselves away from a power outlet may appreciate the option.