Microsoft Surface with Windows RT Pros and Cons

The Microsoft Surface is the first Microsoft-designed tablet computer. Surface RT is powered by NVDIA Tegra 3 quad-core processor, comes with 10.6-inch display, 2GB of RAM, 720p HD rear and front facing cameras in a “VaporMg” magnesium casing. The Windows RT (Microsoft’s ARM-friendly version of Windows 8) tablet, also offers a built-in kickstand. The device is designed to compete mainly with tablets running mobile operating systems like Android and iOS (iPad).

The promise of Surface is simple: You get a tablet when you want a tablet, and you get a laptop when you want a laptop. For the most part this is true. You can lounge with your Netflix videos and Kindle books, you can listen to all-you-can-eat music or stream rented movies with integrated Xbox services, using the “Modern” style of navigation that’s easy to flip through with a finger.

You also get an Office suite that includes Word, Excel and PowerPoint, along with a surprisingly useful pair of keyboard-and-trackpad options — the Touch Cover and the Type Cover — which are sold separately but should be a required purchase for anyone going the Surface route.

 

IMAGE: MICROSOFT

Surface RT Pros :

  • Microsoft Surface’s Metro interface is innovative, elegant, powerful, and versatile. The tablet feels strong and well-built, includes Office 2013, and rich video and music services. Its keyboard cover accessories are the best ways to type on a tablet, period.
  • Quad core processor
  • Lots of RAM (2048 MB RAM)

Surface RT Cons :

  • Low pixel densitiy screen, below 180ppi(148 ppi)
  • The camera lacks autofocus, flash
  • Lacks global positioning system (GPS)

Pricing and availability: A “limited quantity” of Surface RT tablets will be available for pre-order Tuesday on Surface.com, starting at 9 a.m. Pacific time. The 32GB version costs $499, and if you want to bundle in the ballyhooed Touch Cover keyboard attachment (which I’ll describe in first-hand detail at the end of this report) you can get the tablet and a black Touch Cover together for $599. The 64GB version of Surface RT sells for $699 with the black Touch Cover included.

IMAGE: MICROSOFT

When stacking the Surface against the iPad, the most direct comparison available is the 32GB Surface with Windows RT (available to pre-order for $499) and the 32GB Wi-Fi only Apple iPad ($599). That $100 price difference will lure a lot of budget conscious buyers.

BOTTOM LINE :

We’d go as far as saying it’s our favourite iPad yet. The smaller size, thinner shape and lighter weight makes for a much better mobile experience. It’s easy to hold and manipulate in the hand but feels durable and well-built enough to accompany you throughout the day. It’s definitely more premium that we were expecting.

Key features :

  • OS :                               Windows RT; Microsoft Office Home and Student 2013 RT Preview (Word, PowerPoint, Excel,  and   OneNote).
  • Exterior :                    10.81 x 6.77 x 0.37in
    1.5lbs
    VaporMg casing
    Dark Titanium color
    Volume and Power buttons
  • Storage :                      32GB*, 64GB
    *1GB = 1 billion bytes; formatted storage capacity may be less
  • Display :                       10.6″ ClearType HD Display
    1366×768 pixels
    16:9 (widescreen)
    5-point multi-touch
  • CPU :                             Quad-core NVIDIA Tegra 3
    2GB RAM
  • Wireless :                    Wi-Fi (802.11a/b/g/n)
    Bluetooth 4.0 technology
  • Battery :                       31.5 W-h
  • Cameras and A/V : Two 720p HD LifeCams, front- and rear-facing
    Two microphones,
    Stereo speakers
  • Ports :                           Full-size USB 2.0
    microSDXC card slot
    Headset jack
    HD video out port
    Cover port
  • Sensors :                      Ambient light sensor
    Accelerometer
    Gyroscope
    Compass
  • Power Supply :         24W power supply
  • Warranty :                  1-year limited hardware warranty
  • Apps (included) :     Microsoft Office Home and Student 2013 RT Preview1 (Word, PowerPoint, Excel, OneNote); Windows Mail                                                and Messaging; SkyDrive; Internet Explorer 10; Bing; Xbox Music, Video, and Games.

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