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i3 Surface Pro or Surface 3 for tablet use?


Well-Known Member
Since Intel has abandoned the ATOM SoC designed for Tablets, the X3, X5 and X7 Tablets are all very similar in SPECs and there isn't an upgrade path. The only successor path is using the Skylake (or future CabyLake) M3-M7 (which the OPP SP4 uses). Currently the Core M Tablets are all trying to compete with the SP4 with 12" screens.

I'm hoping we will see an ARM based Surface Phablet (6.5 - 8") with Ntrig Support running Windows 10 AU with Continuum Support.

Well, I agree and I am bemoaning the fact!!!


Active Member
What would you suggest as an alternative to the S3 leaving aside the iPad Pro?
It all depends what you're looking for (size, power, weight, etc) and what you're willing to spend.

At the cheap end, I recently bought a refurbished Lenovo Yoga Tab 2 for $160. It's a relatively low spec 10" 2-in-1 that's fine for browsing, emails, light word processing, etc. (It has a z3735F CPU, 2 GB of RAM and 32 GB of storage, but a better than average 1920x1200 screen resolution.) According to Geekbench, the z3735F is about 1/3rd slower than the Surface 3' z8700.

You can get similar and slightly better spec'ed Asus T100s, Toshiba Click 10s, some HPs and Acers 2-in-1s for anywhere between $110 and about $200 refurbished. These same or similar models run $250 to $400 new. Be sure to compare their specs because the do vary. For example, the Asus T100HA comes with the mid-range Atom z8500, 4 GB of RAM, 64 GB of storage and 1280x800 screen resolution for under $300. All of these 10" Windows machines weigh more and have lower screen resolutions than the 9.7" iPad Pro.

For less than the 9.7" iPad Pro, you can also buy a variety of last year's model 12"+ 2-in-1s with Core M CPUs. Acer is offering its new Switch Alpha 12 with a i3 CPU and keyboard for only $600. The base i5 model is only $650. These 12"+ machines weigh considerably more that the 9.7" iPad Pro and probably weigh more that the 12.9" iPad Pro.

Your choice depends on what you want and want to pay.