Surface Review: This is what a tablet should be

Discussion in 'Microsoft Surface General Discussion' started by omega1234, Mar 27, 2014.

  1. omega1234

    omega1234 Member

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    Hi guys, I'm new here and wrote a short little review on the Surface. I have the original RT with 64gb and I love it. Without further ado, my quick review:

    The Surface RT was not my first foray into tablets, I've owned iPads, Android tablets, and Kindle Tablets, so I have some experience with all the competition. With the exception of my 2013 Nexus 7, they all pale in comparison to the Surface, especially the iPad. All could, for the most part, handle recreational use, but none could handle work. The Surface RT didn't make an amazing first impression on me, I just wasn't blown away. Then I really started to use it and immerse myself into the Windows 8.1 RT experience. Its intuitive, but not simplified to a dull level. The multitasking feature is simply put, amazing and I feel really at home in the Desktop and Metro UI. The bundling of Office with RT is extremely compelling for the OS and makes the Surface feel even more worth it. The build quality is top-notch and oozes quality. The kickstand, I don't even know where to start with the kickstand. Its brilliant, I guess that would be the only way to describe it. It makes the integration of a tablet into every day life not just feasible, but seamless and enjoyable. People often complain of the lack of apps on the Windows Store, but I've found it to be a non-issue, because of Flash. I don't need an HBO GO or Google Play App if I can just view content directly on the internet. Also, in the 10 months I've owned the Surface RT, I've seen tremendous growth in both the quality and quantity of apps. Just last week, I checked to see if an app was available to watch NCAA March Madness games and I was pleasantly surprised to find the official NCAA Tournament app, the app situation is no longer pathetic as big developers, like Gameloft, start to publish to the constantly growing Windows Store. The inclusion of a USB port and Micro SD card slot is also awesome. My criticisms are few, its thick, the screen could be a lot better (and is on the Surface 2), and its slightly heavy. The bottom line is that Windows 8.1 is great software and the Surface RT is tremendous hardware. It comes together in a highly protable, highly functional, and completely stupendous package.

    As for my next Surface, it will probably be the eventual Pro 3, if not the next-gen RT model.
     
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  2. TunaSurface

    TunaSurface Active Member

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    Nice review, actually took time and read it. :)
     
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  3. ibenzawla

    ibenzawla Member

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    The Surface RT is one of the most underrated pieces of technology in recent memory and I say so with a lot confidence. This beautifully crafted machine has almost entirely replaced my notebook. Please don't get me started about the build quality. What about battery life? Safe to say that your charger will be angry with you. Is it perfect? No it is not. Just like anything made by man. I have heard a lot of good things about its successor the Surface 2 however to this day I have not been able to find a solid reason to ditch my RT and get the Surface 2. A tablet for serious people that's how I like to think about the Surface.
     
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  4. kundas1

    kundas1 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    ^^^ couldn't have said it better...
     
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  5. TunaSurface

    TunaSurface Active Member

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    Agree. Surface 2 doesn't really have that much going for it against the surface.
     
  6. kristalsoldier

    kristalsoldier Well-Known Member

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    I upgraded because of two reasons: (1) the 2-step kickstand. I find this more comfortable that the single-step version. I almost always use my Surface 2 in the second kick-stand position. (2) The Tegra 4 chip, which makes the device just that more responsive. That said, I have not really used the RT with 8.1. I believe 8.1 has made the RT a bit more responsive that what it was.
     
  7. ibenzawla

    ibenzawla Member

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    Two valid points that I entirely agree with. I think a single Kickstand position that is poorly placed is unwise for a tall man like me. However I have been able to take care of that by getting a very nice case that has a comfortable position both for the tablet and the Type 2 keyboard. As for performance I am yet to use the Surface 2 however I know it has a faster processor. However the question is whether the difference is enough to force me to make the dive. I have made some tweaks that have yielded some positive results and my RT as it is right now is snappier than the day I got it. Above all the constant updates that Microsoft keeps pushing for the RT makes me confident that it will only get better. For instance the swipe back to previous page in IE 11 appears to be a bit faster now at least on the sites I frequent.
     
  8. omega1234

    omega1234 Member

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    Grossly underrated. It really bothers me actually, reviewers play with it for a week and then rail on it, but never really get to know the device.
     
  9. kristalsoldier

    kristalsoldier Well-Known Member

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    I can understand and appreciate this. However, when I used the Surface RT, I did not see a cover/ case which would have taken care of the angle of the kickstand - and I found that angle to be too awkward to use over time. In fact, it is only much later - long after I bought the Surface 2 - that I discovered a cover that could deal with the kickstand angle.

    My Surface RT is now used by my partner. I have upgraded the system up to 8.1 and it runs well. However, I have noticed that despite the optimizations that MS has done for the RT, it does seem to be a bit sluggish as compared to the Surface 2 and this I chalk down to the Tegra 4 Chip (or lack thereof in the Surface RT). A case in point: I am fascinated by the PC Settings live tile. I have it installed on the Surface 2 and on my partner's Surface RT. When I tap it and go to the Updates section therein, the Surface 2 seems to be just a little bit more responsive than the RT. And, while (as I mentioned in my previous post) I have not done any other comparisons between the performances of both devices, I think the RT will end up being a bit slower than the Surface 2 purely as a function of the SoC. Sometime soon, I would also like to do a comparison between the devices in terms of battery power. It would be interesting to see if there are any differences.

    To bottom-line the matter - I like the Surface 2. It is a svelte machine, responsive and rather futuristic. But then again, when I got the Surface RT, I had said the same things too and these impressions are not necessarily contradictory to each other.
     

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