The 14 Best Apps for Microsoft Surface in 2021

These cool apps for Surface Laptop, Go, and Pro users are worth your time

There are loads of cool apps for Surface devices to be downloaded from the Microsoft Store app store or elsewhere online. However, from the various Windows 10 stock and cryptocurrency price apps to the numerous photo and video editors, it can be hard to sort through all of the software listings and find the best Surface app for each task. It doesn’t have to be though.

Here are 14 of the best apps for Surface Laptop, Surface Pro, Surface Go, and other Microsoft Surface devices that are worth downloading and checking out.

01
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Best Surface App for Instagrammers: Instagram

Instagram Stories in the Windows 10 Instagram app.
What We Like
  • Instagram Stories look great in this app and shine when projected to a larger screen.

  • Most of the main features seen on the mobile apps can be found here.

What We Don't Like
  • Lack of support for uploading content.

  • No Windows 10 Live Tile support.

Due to a renewed effort by Instagram to update their Windows 10 app with a better UI and more functionality, the official app is now one of the best ways to consume Instagram posts on a Microsoft Surface. This app lets you like, comment, and share posts made by others. You can also search the social network for more content, and access your messages.

The Instagram app doesn’t support the uploading of posts but this can still be done on Windows via the Facebook Creator Studio website.

The highlight of the Windows 10 Instagram app though is its support for Instagram Stories which look significantly better when viewed on a Surface screen as opposed to on a smaller mobile device. In addition to the video being larger, several stories are now displayed at the same time which gives you more control over what you watch next as opposed to just blindly swiping like before.

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02
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Best Microsoft Surface App for Print Publishing: Affinity Publisher

Windows 10 Affinity Publisher on Surface.
What We Like
  • All of the tools professionals need to design print and digital layouts.

  • No subscriptions or paid upgrades required.

What We Don't Like
  • This Surface app can look intimidating but Affinity does provide a lot of free tutorials to help beginners get started.

Affinity Publisher is fully-featured app designed for creating, editing, and publishing content both in print and on the web. This app can be used for throwing together basic pamphlets and posters though it also boasts a massive range of professional grade tools for producing some genuinely stunning book covers and magazine layouts as well.

Unlike its rival, Adobe InDesign, which requires a recurring paid subscription, Affinity Publisher is fully unlocked after its initial purchase which makes it a much cheaper option for Surface owners expecting to use it for years to come. Affinity Publisher also receives free updates on a very regular basis and doesn’t pressure users into buying a new version every year or so.

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03
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Best Microsoft Surface App for Crypto Trading: Crypto Chart

Windows 10 Crypto Chart cryptocurrency app on Surface.
What We Like
  • Live updates of all major cryptocurrency prices in a streamlined format.

  • Cryptocurrency price alerts are easy to set up and manage.

What We Don't Like
  • Portfolio feature can be a hassle if you buy crypto on a regular basis.

  • News feed doesn’t support stories by mainstream publications.

Crypto Chart remains one of the best finance tracking apps for Surface users that’s dedicated solely to Bitcoin, Ethereum, Dogecoin, and other cryptocurrencies. The app, which is completely free, supports price tracking of all major cryptocurrencies and displays them in a simple graph format that’s easy to understand and manage. 

Crypto coin prices can be viewed over a variety of time periods while the portfolio feature lets anyone manually enter their purchases to track in one place. One particularly useful tool is the price alert which can be used for staying up-to-date on a coin’s price. Just set the coin and the target price point and you’ll be alerted within the Windows 10 Action Center whenever the price increase or decrease happens.

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04
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Best Windows Surface App for Stock Market Tracking: MSN Money

Windows 10 MSN Money app on Surface.
What We Like
  • A comprehensive collection of stock, currency, and market tracking tools.

  • The built-in mortgage and currency calculators are easy to use and convenient.

What We Don't Like
  • No global or international setting for the news content.

The MSN Money app is an all-in-one finance app that tracks stocks, currencies, funds, and global markets in addition to curating a collection of the latest industry news. By default, MSN Money displays the assets currently attracting the most attention on the app’s front page but it also lets users add their own custom stocks which can be tracked via the Watchlist tab.

More information on individual stocks can be viewed by tapping their name within the app. You can also pin individual assets to your Windows 10 Start Menu as tiles which will display the latest price changes and related news. Need to calculate a mortgage or convert some currency? The MSN Money app’s built-in calculators can do both.

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05
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Best Surface App for Writing: Word

Microsoft Word on Surface Pro.
What We Like
  • Word can be used for basic and professional writing tasks.

  • Lots of free templates for every project imaginable.

What We Don't Like
  • The cost of the stand-alone Microsoft Word app is very pricey.

  • Microsoft 365 subscriptions can be expensive for casual Surface users.

When it comes to writing on your Surface, it’s hard to beat Microsoft Word. This classic word processor app can be used for jotting down some basic notes or for writing an entire novel with specific formatting requirements. It really is the writing app for everyone.

Microsoft Word features built-in spelling and grammar tools, support for collaboration with friends or colleagues, and an absolutely massive library of templates ranging from restaurant menus and pamphlets to wedding invitations and business cards. Microsoft Word is available as a stand-alone app for $139.99 though it can be obtained as part of a Microsoft 365 subscription which can cost around $70 per year. A free online version of Microsoft Word is also available.

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06
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Best Surface App for Streaming on Twitch and YouTube: OBS Studio

OBS Studio streaming app on a Surface running Windows 10.
What We Like
  • Supports all major streaming platforms.

  • Lots of advanced features for experienced streamers.

What We Don't Like
  • The interface is a bit intimidating for beginner streamers.

  • UI isn’t optimized for touch controls.

OBS Studio is one of the most popular apps for livestreaming and screen recording from a Surface device and it’s also one of the best. It’s free to use and contains almost everything you’ll need to create a broadcast and send it to all of the major streaming platforms such as Twitch, YouTube, Facebook, and even Twitter.

Stream layouts can be created from scratch within OBS Studio or imported from a third-party service such as StreamElements. There’s also support for multiple webcams, microphones, and other media sources which means you can make your broadcast as simple or as complex as you like.

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07
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Best Surface App for Audio Editing: Audacity

Windows 10 Audacity audio editing app.
What We Like
  • Lots of professional audio editing tools for podcasters and musicians.

  • Audacity is free to download and requires no premium upgrades.

What We Don't Like
  • The UI is too small to use with touch controls or stylus.

When it comes to editing sound files on a Surface, it’s hard to beat Audacity. This audio editing app launched way back in mid-2000 and has garnered an incredibly large and loyal userbase over the years due to its ease of use, continued support, and long list of tools. It’s also completely free to download and use.

Audacity is frequently used by podcasters to edit and save episode recordings on Windows computers and tablets though it also boasts loads of other features as well that have made it a kind of all-in-on sound editing app. Audacity can remove background noise from a recording. Audacity can also record a phone call on your computer.

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08
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Best Windows Surface App for Video Editing: DaVinci Resolve

DaVinci Resolve video editing app on Windows 10.
What We Like
  • Professional video editing software that’s completely free to use.

  • Support for modern film features such as HDR and 3D audio.

What We Don't Like
  • A bit too complex for casual users looking to just shorten a holiday video.

  • By default, DaVinci’s UI text size is very small on a Surface, but this can be adjusted.

DaVinci Resolve is a powerhouse video editing app for editing both small clips and major film projects. The app supports all of the usual editing functions for importing, trimming, and manipulating footage and also boasts a wide variety of transition and title tools as well.

Impressively, most of the video editing features found in expensive Adobe software packages can be found in DaVinci Resolve for free. The only major downside of DaVinci is that its UI appears incredibly small on a high resolution Surface screen but this can be fixed in under a minute by changing some Windows 10 settings.

To make DaVinci Resolve’s text larger on your Microsoft Surface, right-click its desktop shortcut, click Properties > Compatibility > Change high DPI settings > Override high DPI scaling behavior and select System (Enhanced).

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09
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Best Surface App for Audio Books: Audible

Windows 10 Amazon Audible app on Surface.
What We Like
  • All content can be downloaded for offline listening.

  • Large icons make it easy to use with touch controls.

What We Don't Like
  • The built-in shop feature often doesn’t work.

  • The lack of Live Tile support is disappointing.

Amazon’s official Windows 10 Audible app is a necessary download for Surface owners who consume a lot of audiobooks from Amazon. Once logged in, the app syncs all of your Audible purchases and listening from the cloud so you can seamlessly continue listening from where you left off on your smartphone or tablet.

As with the mobile Audible apps, this version for Microsoft Surface also lets you send audiobooks to friends, create clips to post on social media, and download files to listen to when offline. The built-in store can be a bit buggy but this isn’t generally an issue as you can always buy an audiobook from the Amazon website in a web browser. Any purchase made on the web will appear within the app moments later.

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10
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Best Microsoft Surface App for Podcasts: Spotify

Windows 10 Spotify music streaming app.
What We Like
  • Massive selection of podcasts in every genre imaginable.

  • Podcasts can be downloaded for offline listening.

What We Don't Like
  • Spotify Premium is needed to download podcast episodes.

  • The UI can be confusing at first.

Spotify is one of the best platforms for discovering and publishing podcasts with its absolutely massive library of shows for pretty much every demographic and interest. The company’s Surface app features almost all of the features found on the Spotify iPhone and Android apps and is actually easier to use thanks to its focus on basic menu links instead of the mobile apps’ confusing filter system.

Another improvement over the mobile versions is the social feature on the right side of the app which displays what your Facebook friends are listening to in real-time. Songs and podcasts can be downloaded to your Windows 10 device for offline listening though this functionality is limited to Spotify Premium members only.

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11
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Best Surface App for Reddit: Legere

Legere Reddit app on Windows 10.
What We Like
  • Easier and faster to use than the official Reddit website.

  • Ability to scroll comments while also browsing a category is a game-changer.

What We Don't Like
  • Very easy to get lost after exploring several links.

There are many third-party Windows 10 Reddit apps but Legere is the best. Browsing Reddit can often be intimidating given the number of links and menus on the official website but the Legere app streamlines the experience with a spacious layout and the ability to scroll through three columns of content simultaneously.

Legere supports a number of Windows 10 features such as Live Tiles, Windows Timeline, and background notifications and can be used whether you’re logged into Reddit or not. Multiple Reddit accounts are also supported which is a boon for those sharing a Surface with others.

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12
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Best Windows Surface App for Exercising: Fitbit Coach

Windows 10 Fitbit Coach app.
What We Like
  • Good selection of free workouts of varying difficulties.

  • Easy to track workout history and personal progress.

What We Don't Like
  • Need to be online to start each session.

There are quite a few cool apps for Surface owners interested in getting fit but few have the polish of the Fitbit Coach app. This beautifully designed Windows 10 fitness app features a massive library of individual exercises that are mixed and matched to create a solid library of workout sessions of varying intensities and themes.

The Fitbit Premium subscription from the main Fitbit app will unlock all paid features in Fitbit Coach. 

The real highlight is the Programs feature which generates dynamic sessions based on your own feedback after each workout. Found the burpees too hard? Fitbit Coach will ask you to do less next time. Too easy? The app will add more. Around a fifth of the app’s workouts are completely free, which should be enough for most, though a $9.99 monthly subscription to Fitbit Premium will unlock the rest.

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13
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Best Streaming App for Surface: Netflix

Netflix app on a Windows 10 Surface.
What We Like
  • Most episodes and movies can be downloaded on your Surface.

  • Massive selection of films, shows, and documentaries in multiple languages.

What We Don't Like
  • You’ll need to pay extra if you want to view Netflix content in 4K.

The Windows 10 Netflix app gives you full access to the streaming service’s massive library of cartoons, movies, TV series, and documentaries. Content can be streamed on your Surface via the app while online or downloaded for viewing when offline.

A basic monthly Netflix subscription costs $8.99 though you’ll need to pay $13.99 a month for HD video and $17.99 for 4K content.

Shows and films can be downloaded in either Standard or High quality while the amount of free space you have left on your Surface is clearly displayed. Netflix’s Smart Downloads feature is genuinely useful as it, once enabled, automatically deletes a movie or episode after it’s been watched. This makes managing disc space on your Surface far easier.

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14
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Best Microsoft Surface Search Engine App: Bing

Windows 10 search tool.
What We Like
  • Search feature is integrated into the taskbar.

  • Often much faster than opening a web browser and searching.

What We Don't Like
  • No option to change the search engine being used.

Believe it or not, the best Surface app for searching the web isn’t an app at all, it’s actually part of the Windows 10 operating system. The Windows 10 search feature is built directly into the taskbar that runs along the bottom of the screen. All you need to do is type whatever phrase you want to know more about and it’ll immediately perform a web search in a popup box without you having to open a web browser and navigate to a search engine’s website.

It is worth noting that the Windows 10 search tool is limited to using just Microsoft’s Bing search engine for results.

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