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back to article Microsoft's Intel-powered Surface Pro to launch in February

Microsoft has announced the next major push in its Surface consumer hardware campaign, including the launch date of Surface Windows 8 Pro, the Intel-powered big brother to the ARM-based Surface Windows RT fondleslab that debuted in October. In a press release on Tuesday, the software giant said its latest tablet will arrive in …

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Anonymous Coward

I'm so excited

And I just can't hide it

I'm about to lose control...

Blaaaarrrrggghhhh!!

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Meh

And I though Apple products were expensive!

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Re: I'm so excited

Hmm... you seem to have forgotten "and I think I like it"

Though judging by your last line, perhaps not.

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How can Microsoft get this stuff so wrong

It's not hard.

1. This device needs 8GB of RAM, 4GB is fine most of the time but sometimes it isn't, RAM is cheap but you can't put any more in this device so the manufacturer should include it.

2. The keyboard should be bundled, it's a major selling point of the device without it it's just a very expensive tablet with a limited supply of apps. If you're not bundling it then it should be $50 tops.

3. The SSD should be 128GB or 256GB, 64GB is going to disappear very quickly when you've got a full install of Windows. My laptop has a clean windows install and it's using 20GB, the surface pro will have a recovery partition using a similar amount. By the time you've installed Office and you're only starting at the formatted capacity of the SSD you're going to have about 10GB left for files.

My laptop is old and clunky and I'd definitely replace it with a surface if this stuff was solved, but the main problem with my current laptop is that it is maxed out at 2GB of RAM so I'm not going for anything that can't be upgrade to or comes with 8GB to start.

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JDX
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Re: How can Microsoft get this stuff so wrong

4Gb is fine. Mainstream desktops are still shipping with 4GB as standard, W8 is supposedly more efficient, the SSD will make swapping WAAAY faster, and ultimately the kind of apps which need 8GB are not the kind of thing you should be running on a tablet.

Kind of with you on the SSD except that for regular users, 64 probably is fine... meaning non techy types. With you on the keyboard.

Note though that this is really a reference device, anyone can make their own competing device since all this is is an ultra-slim touch PC. You'll have to wait for someone to make a beefier version.

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Re: How can Microsoft get this stuff so wrong

"RAM is cheap". True, but the margins on something like this are thin - even $50 on another 4GB of RAM could be more than half the profit.

"a recovery partition using a similar amount [20GB]". Why? An ISO for Windows 8 is 3.5GB, and you can, of course, do a full OS recovery from that. Any additional applications won't need a further 16.5GB.

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Paris Hilton

Re: How can Microsoft get this stuff so wrong

> the kind of apps which need 8GB are not the kind of thing you should be running on a tablet.

But then why bother with an Intel processor?

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Re: How can Microsoft get this stuff so wrong

> the kind of apps which need 8GB are not the kind of thing you should be running on a tablet.

>But then why bother with an Intel processor?

The quantity of software that requires Windows on an x86 processor but is very happy on 4GB or less:

Shitloads.

I've rarely come close to that limit, with multi-layered high res Photoshop documents, CAD, a rendering package and far more Chrome tabs open than I need.

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Re: How can Microsoft get this stuff so wrong

I'd agree with most of this, but I reckon that the derisory 64Gb is a conscious decision and deemed really only for "local" storage. Micro$oft will "encourage" you to use MS Skydrive to hold the family jewels. After all, we know how reliable and nationally pervasive mobile broadband is, right?

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JDX
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Re: How can Microsoft get this stuff so wrong

>>But then why bother with an Intel processor?

Well my main PC has 4Gb. I run Visual Studio, Word, Excel, Paint.net, a bunch of games, etc. MOST software doesn't need more than 4Gb, other than games and art tools. You could even run Photoshop or 3DS-Max on 4Gb (for limited complexity projects).

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Anonymous Coward

Re: How can Microsoft get this stuff so wrong - BECAUSE they've had practice.

He lives! Rejoice! (I think?)... erm... we've all been terribly worried (-ish - see below).

Anyway, welcome back Eadon! Have a downvote.

PS Where were you? Not burying the corpse of RICHTO I hope? He's been worrying quiet lately too... despite lots of appearances of his favourite topic. I hope that's ketchup spattered on your sleeves... :O

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Anonymous Coward

Re: How can Microsoft get this stuff so wrong - BECAUSE they've had practice.

"Not burying the corpse of RICHTO I hope?"

Like Dr Who I think RICHTO has regenerated (degenerated) into TheVogon - remarkably similar style and opinions, same icon

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JDX
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"the perfect complement to the Surface Windows RT."

Does that mean I'm supposed to have both?

I actually kind of want one, though damned if I know exactly why.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: "the perfect complement to the Surface Windows RT."

I read the same sentence and had the same thought, surely we don't need both? but if the Pro is a "general purpose PC" then maybe we do, we just dont know it yet, have to wait for MS marketing dept. to tell us we need them. I also kind of want one, most people at work have either an iPad or Android device for home use and I always ask what they use it for, "ohh everything, its so much easier than using the laptop.." etc etc, I have my Xbox account, my hotmail account and SkyDrive so going down the Windows route would tie them all up quite nicely and I would not need to get another login for Apple or the Google Play store, but...what do I do with it??

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Anonymous Coward

Re: "the perfect complement to the Surface Windows RT."

Because misery loves company, that's why.

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Go

Re: "the perfect complement to the Surface Windows RT."

@JDX: "I actually kind of want one, though damned if I know exactly why."

Because you, like many of us on here (myself included) are like Dug the dog from Up! when he sees a squirrel, only for us, the squirrel is new-to-market tech. In some ways it kind of doesn't matter if we actually have a use for it or if it's actually very good or better than other solutions. It's new, and shiny...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xrAIGLkSMls

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Thumb Up

Re: "the perfect complement to the Surface Windows RT."

Boss just gave the go-ahead to order as soon as it is available. I've been enjoying the RT, but the inability to run Win32 apps was a bit constraining at times so the Pro looks to be interesting to evaluate. Although, I suspect as soon as I start using the Pro I'll largely stop using the RT so I'm dubious about "the perfect complement to the Surface Windows RT" thing.

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I have a question... As its running Windows 8, which under all that finery is STILL using a system registry, it's presumably going to suffer the same system slow downs that all versions of windows have Ben affected with since the dawn of time (well win95 anyway)

What happens when the system becomes so cripplingly slow that you have to nuke and pave? Will it reinstall all your apps or is it going to be a PITA?

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>What happens when the system becomes so cripplingly slow that you have to nuke and pave? Will it reinstall all >your apps or is it going to be a PITA?

You make a disk image (clone) to an external disk (or network resource) once you have your system as you like it- settings, software installed, nice wallpaper etc. In the event of registry clog, theft, a nasty virus or an act of dog, you recover your system from that image.

What do you currently use?

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JC_
Windows

SSDs Save The Day

What happens when the system becomes so cripplingly slow that you have to nuke and pave?

Since switching to a SSD 4 years ago I haven't noticed Windows slowing down over time, so I wouldn't imagine that the Surface will, either. Plus, Windows 8 has some nice improvements in system backup & restore.

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JDX
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Re: SSDs Save The Day

It's just a PC without a keyboard... so what's the problem?

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Slower than a broken tube train

"it's presumably going to suffer the same system slow downs that all versions of windows have Ben affected with since the dawn of time"

It's ok it starts off slow and stays that way, well Metro apps (or whatever they are called this week) anyway. On the Win 8 desktop even Libra Office (oft criticised for being bloated) loads in an instant, but the Metro apps such as Weather and Calendar sit there spinning the hourglass for eons - I know they are cloudy, but it's connected to a fast ADSL and no google services take more than a blink of an eye.

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Bod

It's just a PC without a keyboard

As a PC without a keyboard, it's an expensive tablet.

As a tablet *with* a keyboard, it would become a very attractive proposition.

I want to replace my now relatively big, a little slow and low res netbook with a tablet but want something that runs specific Windows apps I use (with no viable "linuxy" or droid alternative that I like) *and* absolute must have is a keyboard, but also could be used as a tablet, ideally nice and thin. Surface Pro fits the bill, but stupidly expensive.

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@Moeluk

I've seen little evidence to suggest that Window's slowdowns are as a result of the registry. Uneducated users installing boatloads of crapware that runs on start-up, or malware is far more often the cause, in my experience at least...

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Win 8 Registry Improvements

Microsoft can't move away from its dependency on the registry because of all of the 3rd party apps that use it. However, the win 8 registry now automatically defrags the hives as they're loaded and keys are organised according to usage frequency. These factors reduce the disk and memory footprint of the registry and will improve its performance.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Win 8 Registry Improvements

All registry access is via APIs, so Microsoft could easily move away if they wanted. However the registry is a pretty optimal, fast and effective solution and way ahead of legacy alternative solutions like zillions of flat text files, so I can't see why they would want to.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: @Moeluk

They should have called this something else. Surface hasn't gripped people, so now Surface Pro somehow will? I've got a Transformer at home and for briefly writing emails it's far better than an On Screen Keyboard using device. I don't even use the trackpad, the screen is actually better for a device that size though smeary screens is an annoying occurrence.

I just don't really get Microsoft's thought process with this all though. It's all such mixed messaging.

Phone 8 = A phone

Surface = A tablet

Surface Pro = A tablet which has the main selling point of actually being really a desktop, and it's as expensive as a laptop

Windows 8 = A desktop OS that's trying to make you forget really hard that it's actually not a tablet OS, by hiding you in the interface of one.

So the tablets trying to be a desktop, and the desktop is trying to be a tablet. Jebus. If we could have the desktop trying to be a desktop that'd be a start. Under the hood Windows 8 is alright, an improvement on Windows 7... in terms of the Task Manager, SSD improvements etc. It's silly text sized interface, even in desktop mode with heavy tablet focus on my desktop PC that has absolutely not capability for touch, and never will as I actually quite like my arms as they are is a bit of a square peg in a round hole.

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Anonymous Coward

Microsoft's Intel-powered Surface Pro to launch [what?] in February

A bird? A plane? A ship? A rocket? Superman?..

Any chance of sparing us the grammatical ECT? Please?...

Microsoft's Intel-powered Surface Pro for launch in February?

Microsoft's Intel-powered Surface Pro to be launched in February?

...but wait!.. there's more!... the new grammwow™ can even jiggle those original nine words into a grammatically competent statement! ...and save two whole keystrokes in the process!..

Microsoft to launch Intel-powered Surface Pro in February

...but wait!... Order now and you could qualify for our special limited-time offer to convert those two saved keystrokes into unique and appropriate accessories... Yes, that's right!... If you call within the next thirty seconds, we'll convert those two keystrokes into a matching set of custom hand-crafted inverted commas!...

Microsoft to launch Intel-powered "Surface Pro" in February

Order now! This once-in-a-lifetime offer is too good to last! Quotation marks limited to the first five hundred callers.

Grammwow™ is not recommended by physicians. Side-effects include insertion of tongue into cheek, anal leakage and sudden account termination syndrome. Always enjoy grammwow™ responsibly.

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FAIL

Re: Microsoft's Intel-powered Surface Pro to launch [what?] in February

What is 'ECT'? Did you mean 'Etc.'?

Always enjoyable when grammar nazis include spelling and grammatical errors in their rants.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Microsoft's Intel-powered Surface Pro to launch [what?] in February

Electro-Convulsive Therapy.

What the hell do you think etcetera could do stuck there?

Always irritating when halfwits base rants on ignorance and their own spelling and grammatical errors.

Here, have your downvote back.

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Holmes

Re: Microsoft's Intel-powered Surface Pro to launch [what?] in February

You don't understand!

There are many people, and especially technical people, who continue to reject the notion that the disciplines concerned with social and cultural re-engineering, like marketing and political easing, can have anything to contribute, except perhaps peripherally, to the development of a new hermeutics of language. Still less are they receptive to the idea that the very foundations of their worldview must be revised or rebuilt in the light of such re-engineering. Rather, they cling to the dogma imposed by the long post-Enlightenment hegemony over the Western intellectual outlook, which can be summarized briefly as follows: that there exists an external world, whose properties are independent of any individual human being and indeed of humanity as a whole; that these properties can be described by ``meaningful'' grammatical laws; and that human beings can obtain reliable, albeit imperfect and tentative, knowledge of the inherent meaning of a phrase by hewing to the ``objective'' procedures and epistemological strictures prescribed by the (so-called) textual (and contextual) analysis.

But deep conceptual shifts within twentieth-century science have undermined this Cartesian-Newtonian metaphysics; revisionist studies in the history and philosophy of science have cast further doubt on its credibility; and, most recently, feminist and poststructuralist critiques have demystified the substantive content of mainstream Western communicative practice, revealing the ideology of domination concealed behind the façade of ``grammatics'' and ``morphology''. It has thus become increasingly apparent that grammatical ``knowledge", far from being objective, reflects and encodes the dominant ideologies and power relations of the culture that produced it; that the truth claims of sentence structure are inherently theory-laden and self-referential; and consequently, that the discourse of the community of linguistic "enforcement", for all its undeniable value, cannot assert a privileged epistemological status with respect to counter-hegemonic narratives emanating from dissident or marginalized communities. These themes can be traced, despite some differences of emphasis, in Aronowitz's analysis of the cultural fabric that produced, inter alia, quantum mechanics; in Ross' discussion of oppositional discourses in post-quantum science; in Irigaray's and Hayles' exegeses of gender encoding in subliminal televised messages; and in Harding's comprehensive critique of the gender ideology underlying the sciences of communication in general and marketing in particular.

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ECT

Oh, go on then. Electro-Convulsive Therapy. I'm just waiting to see if we can score eadon, bazza shitpeas, and obviously! like earlier.

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Anonymous Coward

@Destroy All Monsters

Eh?

;o)

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Anonymous Coward

Re: ECT

I think Eadon died

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Re: ECT

'Strewth DestroyAM, that's pretty dense. You seemed to have compressed Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance: An Enquiry into Values into the first paragraph, and it's follow-up Lila: An Enquiry into Morals into the second.

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Re: ECT

Except he left out the bits about going to the bottom of the sea for bunk-beds. And the hooker. Can't forget the hooker. Almost as vital as ECT.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Microsoft's Intel-powered Surface Pro to launch [what?] in February

@ Original rant...

Fuck off!

Is that grammatically correct enough for you?

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Re: ECT

It's actually plagiarized.

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Re: ECT

Doesn't Apple have a patent on that?

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This post has been deleted by its author

Stop

Re: Microsoft's Intel-powered Surface Pro to launch [what?] in February

Remember to cite your sources, Destroy All Monsters.

[1] http://www.physics.nyu.edu/sokal/transgress_v2/transgress_v2_singlefile.html

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Microsoft's Intel-powered Surface Pro to launch [what?] in February

Interesting that you wish to rant about grammar, and then you use an acronym without definition. That kind of ignorance, and grammatical error, is just as irritating as the examples quoted.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Microsoft's Intel-powered Surface Pro to launch [what?] in February

>That kind of ignorance, and grammatical error, is just as irritating as the examples quoted.

Knowledge != ignorance

Knowledge != "grammatical error"

Poor consideration, sometimes, but ECT is an extremely widely understood acronym. Why not test that? Highlight ECT then right-click on it and search... see what you get! If you're too ignorant to read common acronyms, too illiterate to realise that etcetera doesn't follow an adjective and too indolent to use a search engine, then you probably shouldn't be tangling with a grammar pedant. Consider yourself schooled young Turk.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Microsoft's Intel-powered Surface Pro to launch [what?] in February

You're being a prick, I didn't suggest it was anything to do with etcetera, I was well aware it was an acronym. However my point was that using an acronym, which isn't well known, and then being a grammar nazi about it is just you acting like an arsehole. Your comment that I should use a search engine to prove your point, that it is well known, does not stand up too scrutiny. That would only prove that ECT has a standard meaning, not a well recognised one.

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Holmes

Good luck Microsoft...

It'll be interesting to see if their vision becomes a reality; merging the fondle tablet and keyboad/mouse desktop genres. Time will tell weather it flops or flies.

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Re: Good luck Microsoft...

>It'll be interesting to see if their vision becomes a reality; merging the fondle tablet and keyboad/mouse desktop genres. Time will tell weather it flops or flies.

Throw in the wildcard of touchless human input- MS have researched this, LeapMotion are gathering interest (and have just signed a deal with Asus to incorporate it into laptops).

I say wildcard, cos it might be that people don't want to wave their hands in the air. Time will tell, as you say.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Good luck Microsoft...

It's as likely as a merger between the car and the toilet.

(Though there are probably researchers in Japan looking at that as we speak.)

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Re: Good luck Microsoft...

So we've already got people who look like twonks talking to themselves thanks to bluetooth hands-free headsets for phones, and now we're gonna have gesture recognition perhaps with people twitching and pulling odd gestures like Marcel Marceau on ice.

In days gone past people got locked in the loony bin for less...

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Pirate

Perfect for business use

as far as I can see, but Microsoft lost momentum. It will take a while to see which of the candidates eventually will get the professional business market share with tablets. At the moment, Android is still upcoming and Apple has a good footing in business. If Microsoft can catchup on this one, Android could easily become a marginal player with tablets for business use.

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