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(ZDNet)   If you've ever wanted to pay $1000 for a tablet with a battery life of four hours, do we have good news for you   (zdnet.com) divider line 35
    More: Fail, pro, How Microsoft, John Wiley & Sons  
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10774 clicks; posted to Geek » on 30 Nov 2012 at 8:59 AM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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Archived thread
2012-11-30 09:20:06 AM
4 votes:

Kazan: also since when is 5 hours of battery life bad?


About 2010.
2012-11-30 11:11:23 AM
3 votes:
I'm an Apple guy, but I really like the idea of the Surface Pro. I don't think it's overpriced or the battery life is that bad for what it is.

I really like the idea of having a Tablet/Ultrabook in one. I've been going back and forth about getting a MacBook Air, and I think that I'll just continue to wait. Since the Surface Pro is x86-based, it's just a matter of time before someone shoehorns Ubuntu or OS X on it anyway.

I'm game for it, but count me out as an early adopter.
2012-11-30 09:35:28 AM
3 votes:
Manufacturers are constantly competing for "Thinner, lighter, more portable!" which reduces the space required for a battery inside the enclosure. I wouldn't balk at a tablet that's two millimetres thicker and an ounce heavier if it meant significant battery life improvement.
2012-11-30 09:11:35 AM
2 votes:
Surface pro really isn't a tablet, it's an ultrabook in the form of a tablet
2012-11-30 08:46:50 AM
2 votes:

sasbazooka: Well, Intel based is a good thing. Too bad Intel hasn't figured out how to be power efficient yet.


Better than having any sort of AMD CPU inside
2012-11-30 08:32:06 AM
2 votes:
And Ballmer scratches his head wondering why Microsoft isnt succeeding outside the Windows/Office/XBOX world
2012-11-30 08:08:24 AM
2 votes:
Pricing your tablet higher than Apple's doesn't make it better.
2012-12-01 08:23:36 PM
1 votes:
Okay, here's how I see it, if you care:

iPad: I've owned two of them. I loved them both. It's a solid tablet, and iOS is a really decent operating system. However, the prime problem with the iPad is the price. I always feel just plain wrong carrying around a tablet that costs that much, especially when I know that I can get a non-iOS tablet that can do just as much for around half the price. The other problem is that iTunes is a walled garden that doesn't offer an app if Apple doesn't consider it within their business plan. This means no emulators, for example, and I just don't like Apple being the gatekeeper when I disagree so much with their way of doing things. I especially find them hard to cope with when they sell the Mini for over $500... A ridiculous price by any measure.

Kindle Fire: This is the tablet I recommend to anyone who wants the "normal consumer" iPad experience without an iPad price. You get the same sort of simplified front-end, the same focus on media consumption, and the same walled-garden concept for app purchases. However, if you want to create media, the Kindle Fire is a poor choice because of the limited front-end. For me, this is a problem as I use my tablet to write, and without the ability to use a Bluetooth keyboard or run apps that aren't "optimized" for Kindle Fire, I find it wanting. For the average user, though, it's awesome for reading, watching movies, playing games, and consuming media.

Nook Color/Tablet: See "Kindle Fire" above, but with more expensive apps and a smaller selection of apps to choose from... Unless you hack it into a full-fledged Android tablet, then it's pretty decent, though limited by the fact that it's lagging behind on stable Android versions.

Other Android tablets: Of course, here there's another problem... There are so many crappy Android tablets out there that it's hard to judge the OS fairly. When it's on good hardware, it's great. When it's on lackluster hardware, it's a nightmare. I've had several Android tablets, and so far the only one that has been a good experience all-around is the Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 10.1" (or the 7" model, if you want the "mini" size). The ASUS Transformer is good, and if you don't mind very short battery life the Zeki isn't awful (but it's not great, either). The Nexus 7 is excellent except for the lack of an SD card slot (WHY, Google? WHY?).

Microsoft Surface and other Windows 8 tablets: Awesome idea, usually pretty decent hardware, but WAY overpriced. I like Windows 8 on my desktop, and it performs admirably on tablets. I just get back to my problem with the iPad when it comes to Surface and other Windows 8 tablets: I'm not happy wandering around with a tablet that costs over $500 when there are less-expensive, just-as-capable options.

And also, the commercials for Surface are just awful, and they drive me away from the product rather than making me want it.

I'm currently pretty happy with the 10" Galaxy Tab 2.0 -- It's just as good as my iPad was, but with a much lower price tag (right now) and the ability to use a Bluetooth mouse, which makes word processing a bit easier.
2012-11-30 04:55:49 PM
1 votes:

Vegan Meat Popsicle: ongbok: Except that the Surface Pro isn't a tablet. It is a laptop with a tablet form factor. Why can't people understand that.

Because some people have really creepy relationships with technology companies and react as violently to any perceived competitor in the market as if somebody were threatening their spouse.

It's weird.


I've often wondered if people are like this with other manufactured goods. Are there threads full of flamewars between Skil users and DeWalt users? Do Hoover owners think Dyson owners are inferior people? If your choice of brand defines you as a person to the point that you feel the need to hurl insults and slights at others who chose differently it's time to take a step back and reevaluate your life a little bit because frankly, that's pretty damn pathetic.
2012-11-30 04:19:00 PM
1 votes:

ongbok: Except that the Surface Pro isn't a tablet. It is a laptop with a tablet form factor. Why can't people understand that.


Because some people have really creepy relationships with technology companies and react as violently to any perceived competitor in the market as if somebody were threatening their spouse.

It's weird.
2012-11-30 04:08:55 PM
1 votes:
Except that the Surface Pro isn't a tablet. It is a laptop with a tablet form factor. Why can't people understand that.
2012-11-30 02:43:54 PM
1 votes:

neongoats: Yep, they saved a hundred bucks. Grats. There is a reason that apple has been crushing the rest of the PC industry when it comes to mobile pcs. Pretty much only Lenovo has the quality to compete.


Except that they aren't....Windows laptops are still king. Unless you are comparing Apple to individual Windows laptop vendors, which would be a bit dishonest. Or if you count iPads, which is even more dishonest.
2012-11-30 02:39:06 PM
1 votes:

Moopy Mac: Kazan: also since when is 5 hours of battery life bad?

About 2010.


Depends on if we're talking theoretical or actual. ACTUAL laptops die after around 3 hours of real use and anyone who claims otherwise is lying.
2012-11-30 02:37:14 PM
1 votes:
I'd rather have a useful tablet with a 4 hour battery life than a worthless dust collecting brick (*cough*iPad*cough*) with any amount of battery life.

This thing is infinitely more capable than any existing tablet.

Gimme one of these for work and a Chromebook for home and I'm happy.
2012-11-30 02:15:42 PM
1 votes:

Vegan Meat Popsicle: If you don't want it is,


If you don't know what it is, even....
2012-11-30 01:09:09 PM
1 votes:

mcreadyblue: Why?


the Windows Surface RT is designed to compete with iPad, etc and the hardware is designed to so

Windows Surface Pro is designed to compete with Ultrabooks, but it fills a niche where a lot of corporate IT users want a tablet format, but with Ultrabook features.

The only think they have in common is the "Surface name", they both run (variants) of Windows, and they both have the same basic external physical design. Other than looking like each other they are ENTIRELY DIFFERENT BEASTS.
2012-11-30 01:08:21 PM
1 votes:

ForgotMyTowel: Why would I want something more expensive and powerful with less battery life just to post updates to Facebook?


So, basically, it's a bad tablet because you don't understand it.
2012-11-30 01:05:04 PM
1 votes:

mcreadyblue: IntertubeUser: As a student, I'm looking forward to taking notes in a classroom with this. OneNote recognizes the handwritten symbols and operators used in college-level math classes. I've been lusting after better ways of taking notes in class and recording lectures and it looks like the Surface Pro will work wonderfully.

My only gripe is that it won't have Office 2010 (or 2013) already installed; I'll have to buy that separately.

Comparing the Surface Pro to the iPad is stupid.

Why?


The Surface Pro uses the technologies in advanced laptops, but in a tablet form. You can run Windows in a full format, including full desktop applications. Something like the iPad is grown up from a Mobile format - lower power technologies that run simpler systems. You can do some amazing stuff on them now, admittedly, but they would make a piss poor job of running Windows as an OS.

They're simply meant for two markets. That explains the Winddows 8 RT Tablets - they're more the equivalent of an iPad, using lighter mobile technologies.

Help a little?
2012-11-30 12:49:19 PM
1 votes:

BullBearMS: ForgotMyTowel: You work with some kind of CAD program, like AutoCAD for example, at your desktop. You're in the middle of updating some designs and you need to take a look at the actual layout. With the Surface Pro you can have a full version of AutoCAD installed, with the exact same interface and capabilities as the version on your desktop(because they are the same version).

You know what else lets you run AutoCAD on the go? An ultrabook with double the battery life and a much, much, better screen resolution. Not to mention a discrete GPU with CUDA support.

Also, AutoCAD isn't capable of using a touch interface at all, so why would you want to run it on a device with a touch screen?.


AutoCAD can use a touch interface, you just can't "draw" with it. Instead you'd use the stylus the same way you would a mouse. Remember, AutoCAD won't know it's running on a tablet, it'll think it's on a standard desktop with a mouse and keyboard. Also, AutoCAD was one example I came up with off the top of my head. There are many other different programs across many industries that don't translate well to tablets because of limited processing power or other limitations of the architecture.

As far as an ultrabook being better, I imagine in many cases an ultrabook or laptop would be better. There are also instances where it's nice to have the conveniences of a tablet and it's simplified UI with the ability to switch over to work mode and run your full suite of desktop programs from one device. I'm not saying it's a one size fits all solution, but it fills the gap between ultrabooks and tablets. People will always be able to say "yeah but in this situation, device X would be better!" and they're normally right. But suffice to say, there is a demand for more powerful and capable tablets from the business world and MS is looking to meet it. How well they do it remains to be seen....
2012-11-30 12:49:08 PM
1 votes:

moothemagiccow: Kazan: Surface pro really isn't a tablet, it's an ultrabook in the form of a tablet

we all know how well those sold


I think you're thinking of netbooks? Ultrabooks are doing well.
2012-11-30 12:40:52 PM
1 votes:
If you stop and consider that the Pro does 50% more stuff and processes nearly EIGHT TIMES faster than the regular... it might make sense.
2012-11-30 12:12:06 PM
1 votes:
For those trying to understand what the Surface Pro is and why it is spec'd the way it is, let me run this scenario by you:

Suppose you're an engineer and at some factory somewhere. You work with some kind of CAD program, like AutoCAD for example, at your desktop. You're in the middle of updating some designs and you need to take a look at the actual layout. With the Surface Pro you can have a full version of AutoCAD installed, with the exact same interface and capabilities as the version on your desktop(because they are the same version). That allows you to grab the tablet, go downstairs and take a look at whatever it is you're designing and make complicated changes with the full version of AutoCAD installed on your tablet right there. When you're done, you can go back upstairs and continue working on your desktop, all seamlessly. Now I know that there are AutoDesk released an app for iOS and Android but they're a different layout and no where near full featured. It's also somewhat limited in what file types it can use and how it uses them. In addition, the iOS and Android tablets are using low powered processors which are slow and cumbersome (or just not capable) when looking at large DWG files.

In addition to this, from an IT perspective it's also very convenient. Since the Surface Pro is running Win8 Pro, it can seamlessly integrate with your domain and take all the GPOs and other security software. There's no need to try to shoehorn the software into the company network like you'd have to do with Android or iOS. Also, from a user perspective, the UI is identical whether you're on a tablet or desktop. You can configure you tablet to run exactly like you desktop with all the desktop programs OR you can configure it to use the more tablet friendly Metro style apps.

This all is very ambitious on MS's part and I'm skeptical that they can pull it off. But the vision, once you understand it, is actually pretty straight forward and not all that off the wall. The hope is that when a CEO or CIO decides that his company needs to get in on this tablet thing and looks at what it out there, he'll see that the MS tablets are already full compatible with all of his software and with the company network, plus they do all the same things iPads and Androids do. In short, MS is after the business customer, not you.
2012-11-30 11:22:18 AM
1 votes:

poot_rootbeer: sasbazooka: Too bad Intel hasn't figured out how to be power efficient yet.

Intel has some fairly power-efficient models. Core i5's aren't among them.

WTF are you doing, Microsoft.


Choosing a platform with enough power/price ratio?

Intel seems to be moving away from LGA to BGA in their mainlines by the end of the 2013s. Integrated, lower power. I think If you're looking for full power PCs in tablet form with low power, you're maybe waiting til then.

Intel's current lower power chips may not have been the right choice here.
2012-11-30 11:08:27 AM
1 votes:

Vaneshi: As I've said before and I'll say again.

It's going to be yet another x86 based full fat tablet. It's not going to be heavier, thicker, hotter and noisier than an ARM based slate it won't have the battery life of an ARM based slate.

You can buy these already and in fact they pre-date the ARM based slates by a considerable number of years (going all the way back to 96 and the GRiDPad).

Also, suck it MS fanbois & shills. I was right. But then I know the farking technology.


It's more than a tablet, it's the only tablet that is capable of doing the same work as a laptop. This is designed for enterprise not for home use. Our head honcho has a laptop and a new iPad, buying both of those cost us more than $1200. We could now get the Surface pro and save money since it could be used to do actual work and still be in tablet fashion.

Go dig up Jobs and give him another hummer.
2012-11-30 10:36:55 AM
1 votes:
It's not too far out of the norm for an i5 laptop, both price and battery life, which is what the Surface Pro is. Comparing it to an iPad is like comparing an old clamshell cell phone to a Galaxy S3 and biatching that the latter is more expensive and drains faster.
2012-11-30 10:15:18 AM
1 votes:

sasbazooka: Well, Intel based is a good thing. Too bad Intel hasn't figured out how to be power efficient yet.


Except for the Atom processor based tablets. This thing offers an i5 or an i7 processor. You'd expect that in a laptop or desktop, not a tablet.
2012-11-30 10:11:38 AM
1 votes:

MayoSlather: IntertubeUser: Comparing the Surface Pro to the iPad is stupid.

And buying a Microsoft tablet for a grand so you can take better notes in a few classes is what?


Having a digital version of my class notes, which takes my crappy handwriting and makes it readable, lets me edit and rearrange and color code and highlight my notes, and can sync with recordings from the lecture ... a thousand dollars might be worth it. Hell, I could even get Kindle versions of my textbooks and lighten my backpack up even more.
2012-11-30 10:02:54 AM
1 votes:

IntertubeUser: Comparing the Surface Pro to the iPad is stupid.


And buying a Microsoft tablet for a grand so you can take better notes in a few classes is what?
2012-11-30 09:53:06 AM
1 votes:
As a student, I'm looking forward to taking notes in a classroom with this. OneNote recognizes the handwritten symbols and operators used in college-level math classes. I've been lusting after better ways of taking notes in class and recording lectures and it looks like the Surface Pro will work wonderfully.

My only gripe is that it won't have Office 2010 (or 2013) already installed; I'll have to buy that separately.

Comparing the Surface Pro to the iPad is stupid.
2012-11-30 09:46:58 AM
1 votes:

cman: Kazan: also since when is 5 hours of battery life bad?

I think the bigger issue is the fact that this, the Surface Pro, in the same family as the Surface, costs twice as much as the regular and has half the battery life. Normally in a regular tech company, the Pro version would have better power.


it has better power which is why it has lower running time.

AdamK: it's half that of any laptop or competing tablet


LAPTOP? WAT?

maybe a tablet yes... but the problem is Surface isn't really competing with the existing tablets on the market. It's going for the ultrabook segment that want a tablet with all the features of their ultrabook


mtb9000: Their only chance at success is to go after the enterprise market.


that is EXACTLY the target audience of Surface Pro

sasbazooka: kalor: wearing socks because of cold.

My home rig is Intel/NVidia, and my wife's rig is AMD/ATI. My system will be cool and quiet, and when she runs her system, it sounds like a 747 gearing up for a takeoff, and the whole room feels like someone turn the car heater on high. It's crazy.


amusingly..

Intel/Nvidia = Cool/HOTOTOTOT [until the 6xx series)
AMD/ATI = Hot/Cool [excluding the old HD2k series]
2012-11-30 09:44:45 AM
1 votes:
That's actually fairly average for an Core i5-based system, both in battery life and in price. Yes, yes, I know, the iPad has better battery life, but the iPad is also not nearly as capable.

To put it in terms an Apple fan can understand, the Surface RT is the iPad. The Surface Pro is the Modbook. I'm not saying that I'm a fan of MS's current direction, but comparing the iPad to the Surface Pro is like comparing apples to bulldozers.
2012-11-30 09:40:56 AM
1 votes:
Last time I will ever get excited by any Microsoft hardware. For that price you can get a nexus 7 and a laptop with an i5. They missed the part where they have to offer something that's better than their competition. Their only chance at success is to go after the enterprise market. The price tag isn't outrageous if the office buys me one...
2012-11-30 09:18:03 AM
1 votes:
also since when is 5 hours of battery life bad?
2012-11-30 08:54:02 AM
1 votes:

sasbazooka: Well, Intel based is a good thing. Too bad Intel hasn't figured out how to be power efficient yet.


That may be true, but I think the ultimate limitation is the form factor - remember, ultrabooks and the Macbook Air can get anywhere from 6-10 hours worth of battery life, and they all run Intel chips inside.
2012-11-30 08:41:38 AM
1 votes:
Well, Intel based is a good thing. Too bad Intel hasn't figured out how to be power efficient yet.
 
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