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Deal breaker


I was ready to buy a Surface RT today, but last night I was researching the VPN issues. I am a physician working in an ICU. I use my tablet to take notes as we do rounds. From those I write my daily progress notes. I have been using an iPAD 2 which is a great tablet except for word processing. It just doesn't handle Microsoft office documents well. So I said "If anything handles those well, a Microsoft device should". The Surface was the proper weight and size and had good battery life. UNFORTUNATELY, the VPN issue is the deal breaker. Our hospital uses Cisco VPN and uses IPSec. RT can't handle it. The PRO can handle it but it is at least $1000 with a keyboard (and you have to buy office) AND the battery life is only about 4 hours according to the people at the Microsoft store. So, I am looking for a better Windows 8 (not RT) tablet with a nice lightweight keyboard. Too Bad.
I don't know about the VPN, but I Think Arnold(here) was using his RT with Cisco.
Surface PRO comes with a PEN. So will you need a keybord for note taking? And the 4h battery is just a rumor, wait for the "real" battery time.
Thanks for your reply. Cisco has several protocols including IPSec, PP2P and L2TP. the first one, which is the one I have to use is the one they don't support. If the battery life turns out to be better, I will consider. I am just bumbed out, that's all.
Microsoft is apparently not allowing access to the required API's that Cisco needs to make an Any Connect App. I've even emailed NCP who make Cisco Compatible clients and they said the same thing. You might want to look at some of the Atom powered Tablets, the Latitude 10 is selling for about $650 and can get up to 10 hours with certain battery options. Since it's full Windows 8 you can install AnyConnect.

Latitude 10 tablet details
Sounds like you're going to want a Windows 8 Tablet with an Intel Atom (Clover Trail) CPU.

From all the reviews I've seen, tablets that feature this CPU have good battery life, similar profile to the ARM chip, but have compatibility with regular Windows software. For example, the Samsung ATIV Smart PC (not the Pro!) has the Atom chip, and should deliver the battery life you're looking for. Plenty of others on the market have this chip also.
Samsung ATIV is a nice tablet. I tried it a few weeks ago, and it also has a digital pen.
I very much appreciate the advice from the posters in this thread. I was at Best Buy yesterday looking at some of these devices. I am still holding out hope that the Surface Pro will have a better battery life than originally thought, but I am looking for other devices. I will keep watching this thread for great ideas. Thanks again!
Even if you dont get the Surface Pro because of the battery life, you might want to look at any upcoming Windows 8 Pro tablets from other manufacturers. They might have better battery life.