If you were holding out for a Surface tablet with Windows 8 Pro, Microsoft has confirmed that they will be available in January. Just be sure to bring a bulging wallet. In a blog post on Thursday, Microsoft Surface general manager Panos Panay revealed that Redmond plans to offer two versions of the Surface running full Windows, …
Wowww, what a brain dead mistake
Apple and Google are selling stuff because its good UI. Big fail by MS.
Let's ignore the ludicrous price for now and consider the device itself.
If it has an achilles heel, it will be the fact that it is reliant on the x86 archictecture. Even the very lowest power sucking examples of x86 still use much, much more than ARM alternatives.
The bottom line is, if it has a fan in it, it will be a fail.
Nobody wants a tablet that runs hot and needs a whirring, buzzing fan to try and keep it from melting.
You may as well get an ultrabook that has a keyboard and can be put on a desk and avoid toasting your hands and arms while using it.
Not to mention needing a bigger, heavier, more expensive battery to keep it comparable with the competition.
At a guess, I think the idea is to run the Metro apps in Tablet mode, which won't really tax the i5 at all.
It would use "full power" when in full Win8 mode.
Issues: heat yes, fan no. Even my monitor has a fan in it (s23a750d)
We've already had half-decent phones using x86 (haven't we?)
The world and its dog has realised that Office isn't a prerequisite for a computer to be useful anymore. General Purpose Packages - so 1990s!
not just a consumer toy.
At that price it's an executive toy.
I for one was pretty shocked at the price, I was totally expecting the entry level unit to be around $1099 and higher up from there.
I suppose if you add the keyboard in it comes to ~$1024, which is closer to 1099.
Unlike most other folks I guess I view the Surface pro as a Ultrabook rather than a tablet. It runs a PC operating system, has an Intel processor, for the most part will be used with a keyboard.
Compare the specs/price of the Surface to that new Dell tablet/ultrabook that they have been pimping recently(that also is not yet shipping). The "XP12 Ultrabook" - Dell's price starts at $1199 with 4GB ram and 128G SSD.
The Surface is also a full 1.3 pounds lighter than the dell
Don't get me wrong I don't expect it to stem the onslaught of iPads, but I'd be sort of surprised if the Surface didn't do quite well against comparable devices from the likes of Dell/HP/etc.
I haven't noticed claims of battery life yet (nor do I see note of any on Dell's site for their thing)
I do think it's terrible that MS takes up so much of the space for their recovery partition and stuff, they should give the users the option to nuke that as part of the setup and reclaim that space. If they want to recover they can do so by say putting the recovery data on a SD card or hooking their tablet to their computer and running recovery software there (WebOS uses this method). It's not a big deal when you eat up a few gigs on a several hundred gig disk, but when it's as small as it is - they really should of thought that out better. Hopefully they fix it in the next iteration.
Re: good price
I can understand that viewpoint. The only problem is Ultrabooks aren't exactly setting the town alight with their sales figures either are they?
I'm not sure seeing the Surface Pro as a little Ultrabook is any more flattering than seeing it as an overpriced tablet.
Re: good price
> If they want to recover they can do so by say ...
I am not sure that would fit in at all with their 'secure boot' lockdown. It is probable that the USB only supports MTP so does not have access to the complete drive and it probably can't boot off the USB.
'Secure Boot' is not just to prevent Linux booting, it is also to prevent Windows XP and 7 as these are a bigger threat to the revenue growth that MS wants.
Very intrigued by it
We have been slowly slipping towards people wanting tablets in the classroom for teaching from (not one per pupil), and iPads have been been played around with but simply don't have the flexibility or capability needed really. So, at the moment, we have laptops issued to staff, and then some staff have iPads as well. Our head has a laptop, iPad and a desktop.
One of these Surface Pro devices would be powerful enough to replace all 3 for him. All he needs to do is dock it when he's in the office or classroom, we can encrypt it using BitLocker so Ofsted are happy when he goes out inspecting, and he still has the tablet form factor when he's wandering around.
The price isn't outrageous either, considering the spec. i5 + 4GB RAM + 1080p screen. Seems like its priced just right to me.
Re: Very intrigued by it
The private school my kids go to has a one iPad (or Android) per child policy, and I know several others with the same (the parents are expected to buy them).
A couple of my local state schools have announced they are going to have a one iPad per pupil policy from next September, one has mentioned multiple payments for parents and the other "free" (not sure how that is going to work out).
Not that bad
Many office workers have notebooks that spend most of the time in docking stations and they cost quite a bit more than this. They're seldom in use when not in their docking station except to check for e-mail or look something up on the interwebs or take notes at a meeting.
Something like this would probably be welcomed by a lot of people though I think the price will have to come down - even if the hardware is comparable to notebooks, tablets have got significantly lower price points.
I have to have one for a customer and I do resent carry > 2 kg around between docking stations. Have to see what the hardware is really like when it's available and, assuming I can get permission to use it on the network, then I might get one.
Re: Not that bad
A lot of that price though is probably the support contract (at least that's what our IT people keep telling us) and I don't see any word of that kind of thing here. I would be interested to know what an "industrial package price" (including machine, cover/keyboard and next-day on-site engineer support in case of issues) is for these things, and how it compares to a similarly spec'd laptop.
Plus whether there would be any kind of plan for desktop docks etc, for those who may want a decent sized screen when sat at a desk (touchscreen or not depending on preference and requirement).
Battery life will make it or break it
If they can get decent battery life out of it (like 10-12 hours) I think they have a fighting chance. However, at those prices they are ogling the enterprise, and even if I had a very good reason to recommend these for my engineers and construction managers I would never get IT to support 8, so it would be a no-no. MAYBE if they could get 7 to work on it without a hassle I could get them to condone it, but otherwise it''ll be smallish laptops.
Re: Battery life will make it or break it
Battery life - alleged to be 4-5 hours, according to a tweet from the Surface team. Which pretty much kills the thing dead in the water, for me....
you know what? i'm thinking about getting one of these (and know a few others who are also), and may get one IF(!) they don't just change the dollar sign for a pound sign and keep the numbers the same. like usual.
If you look at the potential use case for such a device it's actually a tempting proposition. For the enterprise it can run the Cisco VPN client and act as a domain member meaning you get the full level of connectivity and security that you would expect from a laptop. A battery life of 6-7 hours would be fine for how long such a device is likely to be used away from a desk, and because it's powerful, when you get to your desk, you would be able to plug a full sized keyboard, mouse and monitor into it and keep using it as your main computer.
For the individual used to iPads and the like, it's perhaps not so useful. That said for £700ish for the 128GB model with a keyboard, I'd be awfully tempted.
Is it desirable?
Does it look the same as the cheapest ARM Win RT model to the untrained (or mildly trained) eye? If so, they're going to have a hard time persuading people to buy it. Let's face it, we all like to show off our expensive bling once we've convinced ourselves that we deserve it - for whatever reasons make sense to us.
If people are going to think you've got a cheap and nasty Surface when in fact you've blown a chunky wad on it, it's not going to be very rewarding.
"One can't help but note, however, that these displays are still a far cry from the latest iPad's 9.7-inch, 2048-by-1536 Retina display".
Oh come on... 1080p on a 10.6" screen is more than ridiculous anyway. Lets tan the battery and gpu with even more pixels for ZERO benefit! Methinks the reviewer may be a fanboi...
Think of it as...
...a 10.6", portable, touchscreen, light iMac. With a decent version of Office.
One thing: the cover should NOT be extra. If it were built in, and came with a mouse as well, then it'd suddenly be an awesome competitor to ultrabooks as well.
Re: Think of it as...
It does come with a mouse (well trackpad). Bloody useful for navigating those annoying websites that use onMouseOver events that are fucking impossible to use on a touch only device. And even then some mouseover sites are damn near impossible to use WITH a mouse (Bugzilla I'm looking at you)
MS is missing where business desktops are headed
A lot of us are virtualizing our desktop environments, and it just doesn't matter how powerful the endpoint is. We have users with iPads and Android tablets who routinely do work remotely running the View client (against a Windows 7 desktop in the datacenter). Citrix users have been doing this forever. Obviously connectivity is the key, but it's getting to the point where not having connectivity is the exception.
I was on a Southwest flight a month ago that had WiFi, gave them my five bucks for the privilege, and spent the next three hours using a View session on my laptop to actually do work. It wasn't the smoothest experience, but the fact that it worked at all was impressive and just signals where we're headed.
You don't need powerful endpoints in the business world (which is I assume where the Surface is trying to fit). All you need is a decent display, keyboard and mouse, plus some low bandwidth connectivity, and you're all set. And you don't need $1,000 or Windows 8 to get there.
Re: MS is missing where business desktops are headed
While general enterprise desktop computing might be heading this way, ask the kind of people who use high powered workstations to do CAD or design work in a remote desktop session and they will very quickly tell you to bugger off.
I can also see this being useful in smaller companies that don't have large back-office systems. My dad's company would be a perfect case. The sales manager would find something like this perfect when out on jobs since he can still use Outlook and the VPN to the office, but doesn't have to lug around a laptop, case, charger etc etc.
Too low spec, too high a price
I'd forgive a higher price, but for the low specs.
Maybe Android can't run visual studio-which I need but it does have a 2500*1600 screen. Ms want me to accept far lower resolution, low storage (for a windows device!) where most is used by Windows with its winSXS folder bloat, a measly amount of ram and average processor speed?
I'd hoped to find a device suitable for visual studio. Not for heavy development either, just simple f# console stuff, light vb and c#, and casual tinkerings with ILasm-I'm learning these and a tablet I can do it on would be a god send.
But the specs on offer for the majority of my savings are deeply unexciting. Ok, I'm not the masses, just a developer playing with stuff. Have to confess though, win8 itself isn't exciting but for the very shallowest of reasons. I hate the new look :).