What's new

Upgrade path from Surface RT/2 (Windows 10/Mobile)


Well-Known Member
Now, Windows RT and Windows Phone paths both are essentially evolving into Windows 10 Mobile, which throws the Surface tablet upgrade path a bit out of whack when we look at available information.... (I don't know what the edit window is for this forum, so someone correct me on anything and I'll try to fix.)

* We know that Windows 10 Mobile is the continuation for ARM devices, particularly 8-inch and under.

* We also know that Universal Office apps (stripped down, not the full Office 2016 experience) are free on those Win10M devices.

* All other larger Windows tablets will be presumably Windows 10 on Intel architecture. (Where's AMD in this? Meh.) Microsoft Office will be a separate purchase.

This leaves the Surface RT/2 upgrade path in an awkward place:

* Going to a Win10 tablet of similar form factor and hardware quality and probably requisite "ultrabook" internals: How much more expensive will this be?

* Factor in the additional cost of Office for non-Win10M tablets; will Office 2016 be subscription-based only? I may actually stick with 2013 if that's the case ($200 ish). There's no information on the differences between UOffice and Office 2016 right now, though.

* If the free Universal Office apps are really important, you're stuck with an 8-inch and smaller device, which isn't great for people used to Surface RT/2 for writing manuscripts and the like.

Hmmm. Well, I don't intend on upgrading my mobile tablet in the next year anyway, but given my priorities (size and battery life), I hate having to shell out more cash for ultrabook internals and Office. At this point, it looks like I'll be waiting for deep cut sales of other non-MS Windows 10 tablets, and they'll probably be made entirely from plastic to stay on the cheaper side. A future Surface Pro will be too costly for my purposes (I don't need a desktop replacement because no mobile device can compete with a PC tower in gaming), which is an awful shame. Besides the fact that future SPros will likely keep the larger size, which I'm not looking for either. The dearth now is in the 10-11 inch space with quality hardware and Win10M+UOffice, a cheaper alternative to an ultrabook-tablet.

So for those with Surface RT/2 and looking towards the future upgrade paths, which way are you leaning towards? What aspects matter to you the most--size, price, Office, anything else?


Well-Known Member
I remembered another selling point, something I paid attention to during my imported subnotebook days: no fan. Having a quiet device with no fan is a big selling point for me, but I don't know of any Windows 8.x tablet that's fanless and does not run the risk of overheating (was there a Sony Wintab that had this problem?). It's too early to tell with Windows 10 devices, I guess.

Watch for a deal like this when the time comes.
Dell Venue 11 Pro with Office: $499
  • 10.8-inch Full HD touchscreen
  • Intel Atom Z3770
  • 2GB memory/64GB SSD

  • Up to 10 hours battery life

Sorry about the formatting ... copy paste ... it wasn't me :)


Super Moderator
Staff member
I was looking at the Intel roadmap earlier and during the first half of 2015 the next version of the Atom family, Cherry Trail SoC will be in Tablets and in the second half of 2015 the successor to Cherry Trail, Willow Trail is to be released. By the time your Surface 2 is in need of replacement whatever comes after Willow Trail will be out or maybe the version after that and there should be some good deals on whatever was just replaced. :)

Personally I'll be so disappointed that I cant get a Tegra X1 powered Surface I will be forced to buy an Android Tablet with it. It's historically significant to have the First Teraflop mobile SoC.:)