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Microsoft Surface Hub 2S is a $22,000 85-Inch Touchscreen That Runs Photoshop

If you have deep pockets and have been dying to edit your high-res photos on a ginormous touchscreen, you may want to take a look at the 85-inch Microsoft Surface Hub 2S, which will begin shipping in January 2021. It’s a $22,000 display that can run Adobe Photoshop.

Microsoft first unveiled the Surface Hub 2S in April of last year before revealing more details this week.

The original Surface Hub unveiled in 2015 was extremely limited in what it could run — it was essentially an ultra-expensive whiteboard and videoconferencing solution.

What’s neat about the new Surface Hub 2S is that it will run Windows 10 Pro, allowing you to have the full Windows desktop experience on the giant display.

Windows 10 running on the 50-inch Surface Hub 2S.

What this means is that all the apps you use to work with photos on Windows 10 will be supported — software like Photoshop, Lightroom, GIMP, Capture One Pro, Luminar, ON1 Photo RAW, Affinity Photo, etc.

A photo illustration of Photoshop on a 50-inch Surface Hub 2S. Illustration based on photo by Microsoft.

The Surface Hub 2S supports multiple modes of input, from using the Surface Hub 2 Pen to touch to a standard mouse/keyboard combo.

“The Windows 10 Pro or Enterprise configuration on Surface Hub 2S gives people a truly personalized Windows experience on a brilliant large screen with all of the familiar features in Windows they enjoy on their PC, like the taskbar, Start menu and the window management customization,” Microsoft says. “Also included are features like browser favorites, the ability to run any app like they would on their PC, and task view that can be synched across other PCs for continuity no matter the device people are working on.”

Compared to the original Surface Hub, the 85-inch Surface Hub 2S features bezels has 45% smaller bezels and is 20% thinner and 30% lighter.

The 85-inch 16:9 IPS LCD display measures 44.5×62.8×3.4 inches (1130x1595x85.6mm), weighs 185 pounds (84kg), and has a resolution of 3840×2160. With a PixelSense Display, it features 10-bit color, anti-glare viewing, and support for 20 simultaneous touch points.

Inside the computer is a quad-core 8th Generation Intel Core i5 processor, 8GB RAM, and a 128GB SSD. Graphics are powered by Intel UHD Graphics 620.

While photographers can now take advantage of the new Windows 10 Pro support, the Surface Hub 2S is designed for team collaboration in today’s hybrid physical/digital workspaces, so you’ll still find the same whiteboard and videoconferencing capabilities offered by the display’s predecessor.

Microsoft has opened up pre-sale reservations in the US, but currently only to commercial customers. It’ll be offered to additional markets in the coming months, and it should be available to customers around January 2021.

This is the Sky Replacement Feature Coming to Photoshop

Adobe Photoshop will soon be getting a powerful Sky Replacement feature that lets you instantly swap skies in and out of your photos with a click. Here’s a 3-minute video that offers a sneak peek at the AI-powered system.

The Sky Replacement feature will be found under the Edit menu.

It’ll bring up options for choosing a sky, shifting or fading the edge, making adjustments to the sky or foreground, and selecting what it should output to.

There’s a selection of preset skies you can choose from, but you can also choose your own sky photo from your computer. The sky photos can be grouped into convenient collections.

Sky Replacement automatically distinguishes between the foreground and sky of your photos. Clicking any sky automatically instantly replaces the current one. In just moments, your photo can take on drastically different looks:

“Adobe Sensei-powered models do the heavy lifting of masking and blending,” Adobe product manager Meredith Stotzner says in the video.

The AI also uses algorithms to “harmonize the foreground of your image with the sky.” What this means is that as you change the sky, Photoshop will automatically adjust the colors and lighting of the foreground to match the sky, making the photo more believable.

If you only want a portion of a sky photo to be used in your shot, you can resize the sky with a Scale slider and then click and drag it around in your photo. And as you scale or reposition the sky, the look of the foreground will continually be updated to match it.

An original photo before Sky Replacement magic.
Using one portion of a sky photo gives the foreground cool blue tones.
Dragging to the sunset portion of the sky photo gives the foreground warm tones.

“What’s the most powerful part of this feature? The full force of Photoshop that’s preserved with every layer, mask, and non-destructive adjustment,” Stotzner says.

Adobe first teased a SkyReplace feature back at Adobe MAX 2016, but Skylum beat Adobe to the punch by releasing its own AI-powered automatic sky replacement in Luminar 4 back in July 2019.

If you’re a Photoshop user who has been waiting patiently for the technology to be released, the good news is that your wait will be coming to an end very shortly. Adobe says it will be sharing more about this feature at the virtual Adobe MAX 2020 conference that’ll be held October 20-22.