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Windows 8 Surface: best tablet, best laptop OR compromised and confusing?

This topic was created by RegisterGav .

Windows 8 Surface: best tablet, best laptop OR compromised and confusing?

Microsoft and Apple have given their slightly loaded opinions on Redmond's debut fondleslab, but what do you think? Speak your brains here on Surface and on Windows 8 - the good, the bad, the ugly...

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Meh

I'm in the market for a tablet. I currently have a 27" iMac but, unlike my previous MacBook Pro, it of course isn't portable and the idea of a tablet, particularly in the kitchen (I do like cooking and recipes) and to use outside, appeals.

Yes, I will look at the new Windows product (amongst some others) but I suspect that I will eventually plump for the top-of-the-line Mac product. My reasoning is mostly that (1) there are plenty of apps for it (even though I'm not an app fiend), (2) it should be easier for me to "learn" than any other tablet (I'm already used to Macs), (3) Macs "just work" and although that can be debated, it *is* a valid argument, (4) say what you will but Apple products are definitely "stood behind", my current iMac is about to get a new HD because the previous one (Seagate as it happens) could potentially fail, my previous iMac got a replacement Logic Board, both free and both replaced well out of warranty and (5) it is a currently proven product rather than a brand new item in this genre. I suspect that (5) will eventually be the final arbiter to persuade me to go Apple - yet again.

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Re: my previous iMac got a replacement Logic Board

My MacBook Air didn't receive Apple service because August, 28 deadline has passed.:

http://support.apple.com/kb/ts2948

and this is theirs production defect, not any accident caused by my handling of the MacBook (I have service center conclusion confirming my words). I bought it several years ago for $2100 BTW. So please think twice before trusting Apple again.

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WTF?

What's with the 'full screen app' thing ? Do users really want to go back to the early '80s ?

The most frustrating thing about my phone is that I have to make one app disappear to look at another and am never quite sure if it will remember what it was doing or start afresh. Usually, it does the opposite of what I wanted - hardly surprising as there's no way to indicate the difference between 'move aside' and 'i'm done'

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CTO at Technicare

Its really interesting to watch the fanboi response to the Win8 plus hardware launch. This may well be the first major OS launch from ANY vendor that doesn't break large amounts of third party application software.

Take that Apple!

There has been so much whingeing about how the user community is going to be hopelessly confused by the UI changes in Win 8. These are not UI changes as much as they are UI extensions, and the vast majority of users will have these issues dealt with in a day.

Now if they would just get rid of that blowhard CEO....

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First day of a windows 8 touch screen

This is typed on a Samsung ATIV. Easy to use, took me a couple of hours to get use to the touch interface, now I'm a master of the 2/3 - 1/3 multi tasking, very quick to boot, switch windows, run desktop software. Overall this is the best device I've seen in years. My main reason for not getting an iPad/android tab was my work depends on office, I know there are products that do something similar on both platforms but nothing beats Microsoft Office for getting the job done, oh and how many of you have work files on a usb in your pocket with your keys?

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Silver badge

After over a third of a century trying to ...

... convince people to keep their greasy mitts off my screen, this entire fondleslab thang is abhorrent to me. I totally, categorically reject the entire concept.

People who can't type and refuse to understand the command-line, much less how the guts of the box work, will probably have a somewhat differing opinion. But then they are consumers, not computer users, much less computer/networking experts.

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Why ....

... does the "dekstop" UI pop-up unneccesarily - an annoying distraction from an otherwise innovative OS

... do people not see that application of apps to Windows across multiple platforms is a big deal

... are people not talking more about Xbox music - have you used it - its great ! If handled properly Spotify is dead - perhaps Apple should buy Spotify to shore up their poor position in streaming music

... is the Lumia 920 only on EE in the UK - to make an impact Nokia/Microsoft need to make the new kit easy to get - not hard

... do IT companies not understand IT is now about the consumer - BYOD is forcing this into the enterprise too. Its the 21st century - I should not need to know how to install the latest drivers for windows 8 to make my laptop work again - but *sigh* - I did. The average consumer would still largely be stuffed attempting an upgrade. (my laptop is six months old and I really only run office and iTunes on it)

... are memories so short. iPhone and iPad were derided on launch day - but are now worshipped. Can Microsoft perform the same trick on Win 8 platforms?

... Are the media obsessed with Apple. It's shedding senior directors, producing no innovative mobile products this year, unusually shipping a piece of rubbish software (maps). It's printing money - but has it peaked?

... do I want a Surface, when I have an iPad 3, iPhone, iPod Touch etc etc. PC integration is an attractive proposition, Xbox music across devices looks to be great - it is on Xbox and PC. Shall I part from the herd and go Microsoft ?!

... did I buy my kid a Kindle Fire HD - cos its cheap and I do not care if she drops it! The difference in price can buy a load of apps/films/music - she's 10 and won't care.

... do I spend any time reading these forums

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Surface's USB port

Please don't mention the USB port on Surface - you can plug everything in it, it's true, but the device will only support what Microsoft deems necessary, so it's closed exactly the same way as iPad's port (there is official camera adapter by Apple to load photos from attached camera or SD card and that's about all you can do).

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VPN support

I have LUKS/AES encrypted 2TB external USB3 harddrive attached to my home WiFi router (Asus rtn-16). This involved setting up TomatoUSB firmware on it and building custom kernel with support for md, crypt, dm etc modules and cryptsetup binaries and libraries with all goddamn deps. I know OpenVPN well but I decided instead on oldskool pppd-over-ssh VPN (also a lot of custom configuration). I managed to pull it all off. With Surface this all is impossible, especially the part where I'm able to access all my files and home computers and torrent and jabber and ftp and whois and more via VPN, from anywhere, including from behind corporate firewall which only allows outbound connections to ports 80 and 443 and even them only via proxy with authentication (I use transparent proxying BTW).

And I can access another corporate network simultaneously with the first one mentined before, with DNS working fscking great for both nets and the Internet in forward (A) and reverse (PTR), with krb5/AD entries resolving just fine etc and so on. Try to do that on any MS product you sheeple (http://xkcd.com/1013/).

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Like It

I've been using Window 8 on my laptop for about a week, and I really like it. Granted I banished the "Metro" menu in favor of Classic Shell, but the Metro isn't so bad, its just really not designed for a mouse. But on one of the Surface Pros with the real version of Windows 8 (none of that RT crap)? Its like, I get my real deal laptop (with the real keyboard case) when its the better tool (~80-90% of the time), and a functional tablet the rest of the time. Assuming its priced competitively against UltraBooks, sounds like a win.

It's pretty brilliant of M$ too. Apple is trying its hardest to turn the PC into a cell phone. M$ is trying to turn your computer into a cell phone. I've used my cell phone, i've used my computer; if I had to choose, i'm sticking with the computer.

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ElitePad

As a HP employee I was taken in by the discount pricing we get on the ElitePad 900, and whilst the Atom processor may not be a powerhouse, this is by far the nicest tablet I've ever picked up. It's a solid build with an aluminium case and Gorilla Glass, it's lighter than the Motorola Xoom that I had before it (and apparently lighter than the Surface too) and it gets decent battery life. I also find Windows 8 very intuitive with a touchscreen. I would easily have paid full price for it.

I almost did buy a Surface, but was ultimately put off Windows RT (and not wanting to pay the kind of money for the Surface Pro when it's so bulky/heavy and with such bad battery life).

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