Why no gps?

Discussion in 'Microsoft Surface Pro 2' started by starstreak, Nov 4, 2013.

  1. starstreak

    starstreak Member

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    Anybody know the reason why MS didn't put in a GPS into the SP2? I mean really, out of any tablets out, they should've. Should've gone hand in hand with cellular ability.
    MS makes software called streets or something that can use GPS to track you on the map already. From years ago, I remember having a battery operated gps device that connected to my laptop that I used when I was on a trip in the mainland. You don't even need cellular for it to work. You could dump the map on the hard drive. This was before there was a thing called TomTom. I would've paid $10 more for gps in my SP2.
     
    Last edited: Nov 4, 2013
  2. oion

    oion Well-Known Member

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    Since MS bought Nokia, it's just a matter of time. However.

    Your $10 is rather funny. How much more expensive is the LTE model of iPad versus the identical but wifi-only iPad? The wifi models of iPads outsell the LTE versions for a reason.
     
  3. beman39

    beman39 New Member

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    I hear ya, I don't know why they didn't include a bagel toaster too! I mean that would only cost $12 bucks more! LOL j/K I really don't see why you would want a GPS in a tablet when every phone has a GPS like it was mentioned in another post, also you can have a TomTom or garmin device for like $50 bucks nowadays which almost every car I see has one of those devices so why would you want a huge tablet in your car as a GPS...I don't get it. also I think oion has a point that it would cost more to have a gps in the Surface when they're pretty expensive as it is and I don't think people would approve/appreciate the higher prices.
     
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  4. starstreak

    starstreak Member

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    Adding GPS is cheap. In your cellphone, it's probably part of a all-in-one chip already. Cost for the chip with gps is a few dollars over one without. Cellular ability on the other hand would cost more and now MS would have to consider who would be the carrier. So I can understand it not having the ability.

    As for why have the gps chip? Next time you're somewhere with wifi, ask bing to put you on the map. Since it's only guessing where you are, one moment, you are right where you should be. Next you could be a block away. It would bother me if I asked bing to show me how to get to a store in a town I didn't know and it walked me down the wrong street.

    For commercial side of things, having GPS is great when you're in the field and need to mark where you are. I was at Best Buy (and that's what made me think about the GPS again) and a government contractor was trying to see why he would want the surface pro 2 vs a ipad type device. When he mentioned he was going to be using it in the field to mark points on a map, I thought the GPS would be helpful. Granted, a modern internet phone could do it, but now he has to get the coordinates from the phone and key it into the surface. Now its a two-step process and could make errors typing in a string of numbers.

    Of course all this would be mute if someone can tell me why the heck does AT&T charge $10 for tethering on a limited data plan on my phone? I paid for the 2GB of monthly data, it shouldn't matter if I did it on my phone or on a tethered device.
     
  5. oion

    oion Well-Known Member

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    It's redundant for the vast majority of people. Wifi-only models of tablets are more popular on the market, hands down. You can pull all sorts of random numbers "oh it would only cost this much to add," but these features are business decisions first and foremost. (I also have no idea why you say something weird like "In your cellphone, it's probably part of an all-in-one chip already"--what does that have to do with the Intel or Nvidia Tegra? Are you saying the Surface lines are phones?) If adding GPS was "cheap," why on earth would Apple charge so much more for an LTE version of their iPads?

    "Why" isn't even a point of useful discussion. You can find all sorts of use for any additional features; why NOT is the business decision--maybe you were the one killed your own argument in a different thread: "All cell phones have GPS so why can't this?" Exactly. Smartphones have GPS. Everyone has a smartphone. Thus. Ergo. Moot. And yeah, look at your additional data costs.

    In field use, the people who need GPS on a larger tablet format are still very much a minority. I'm sure MS looked at the market data and considered that. Every additional thing is going to weigh on the overall cost; people still complain about the keyboards, and that's infinitely more useful than a GPS chip with additional data plan for the vast majority of users.

    There's supposed to be LTE in certain Surface model sizes in the future. Since there's going to be a Surface mini of some type, I'd expect it in that. There may or may not be wifi/LTE models of larger Surface tablets. However, Microsoft is not going to win any points by charging for a premium LTE model the way Apple does.
     
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  6. kayzee

    kayzee Well-Known Member

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    The thing is prices in a product are never proportional. You mention Apple there, who are of course guilty of it, as is Microsoft... charging so much extra for a 512Gb SSD which isn't really justified.

    At least with the LTE thing, I was annoyed at first, but then came to release I would never use it. Tethering works damn well with my iPhone and now I have 8Gb p/m to use up I would never want an additional charge. Plus the bloody thing never leaves my room lol.
     
  7. D1vad

    D1vad New Member

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    There are a number of potential reasons.
    1) GPS chips need a clear sky view to be as accurate as cellular assisted GPS units are. With just a GPS it needs an un-obstructed sky view to get a good signal, with a cellular assisted GPS you don't just get a signal from a satellite but you also get cell tower signals and they can calculate your position even when you are not getting a clear sky signal.
    2) With a built in GPS you'd very likely need to position your surface on your dash, that would likely create a legal nightmare for Microsoft. Having a PC in view of the driver, in many areas would be illegal simply because you could watch a movie on it.
    3) Having a surface mounted on your dash has the potential to block your vision.
    4) For thoes needing a GPS they can still pick up a cheap Bluetooth GPS and place it on the dash where it has a clear sight picture, and where it doesn't drain the surface's battery.
    5) Having the surface out of direct sunlight (blocked from a clear view) makes it much easier to see, and again in many areas will help it stay at a better tempeture.

    Hope that answers why...
     
  8. Name Taken

    Name Taken Active Member

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  9. Telstar1948

    Telstar1948 Active Member

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    On the other hand, Nokia Lumia 2520 (to be released this quarter) offers LTE/GPS for a total price of $499.00 without keyboard. It's comparable to the Surface 2 plus a few extras thrown in (Nokia Here etc). I think the Surface 2 32 GB model is $459.00 — please correct me if I'm wrong on that.
     

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