Microsoft unveils new touchscreen desktop PC aimed to enable more creativity

Microsoft has unveiled a new desktop PC that can be folded down into a second angle for drawing and sketching.

The Surface Studio is a 28-inch touchscreen PC on a stand, with the processing and power components built into the base, but can be folded down to a 20-degree viewing angle - similar to slanted desks found in art studios - to give users more room to be creative, the technology giant said.

Unveiled during a live event in New York, the tech giant's product chief Panos Panay said the new PC has "performance that is going to be unmatched".

The new PC, which will cost 2,999 US dollars (£2,500) will also come with a new control device called the Surface Dial, which sits beside the PC and can be used to scroll through apps, settings and screens on the Studio when the Dial is turned. Microsoft also demonstrated how the Dial can be placed onto the Surface Studio screen and used as a colour pallet when drawing or sketching with Microsoft's Surface Pen.

The technology giant also announced an updated version of the Surface Book laptop - the Surface Book i7 - one that Microsoft claims is "three times more graphics power" than Apple's 13-inch MacBook Pro.

Microsoft also revealed that a major update to Windows 10 will be launched in early 2017, called the Creators Update and including a 3D version of the popular Paint app.

The Creators Update will be released to all current users of Windows 10 for free in "early spring", Microsoft said, and will include Paint 3D, a version of the long-standing drawing app that will enable users to sketch in 3D for the first time, as well as edit and import parts from 2D photos to create three-dimensional scenes that can be saved and shared on social media.

3D editing features will be introduced to long-standing programmes - including PowerPoint - giving users the chance to create 3D presentations.

A new 3D Capture tool for smartphones was also announced, which will enable users to scan physical items and insert them into images.

Microsoft's Terry Myerson said: "With the Creators Update, we asked ourselves what can 3D do to unleash the creator in each of us?

"We need technology that goes across all aspects of our lives - work and play. Windows is your arena, sanctuary and kitchen table - the place where you get things done."

Mr Myerson also revealed that a range of virtual reality accessories and headsets to support the Creators Update will be released in 2017.

Microsoft also discussed gaming, announcing a new live broadcasting feature called Beam that will enable users to share their gaming with friends as they play.

The software will allow players to interact with others when using Microsoft's Xbox One console or Windows 10.

The new feature will be a direct rival to the Amazon-owned Twitch platform, which also currently enables users to live stream their games online as they play them and has more than 100 million site visitors each month.

New social tools are also being added to Windows 10 via the Creators Update that will enable users to place their most important contacts into the Windows task bar at the bottom of the home screen, from which users will be able to contact them in multiple ways, including email or Skype.