I know how you feel - it's a decent amount of money. I can give you my thoughts, and hope it will help.
The Surface RT is a rev 1.0 product. It's not as fast as an iPad4, but my primary usage with the Surface is not a gaming machine. Many of my friends are using their iPads as Playstation Vitas.
My primary goals are:
Web Browsing - the Surface is hands-down the best tablet for browsing as you have the full IE10 browser w/Flash. The closest on iPad is Puffin. Many "apps" on iPad or Nexus are simply giving you an alternative to a website that doesn't run well in Safari or Chrome-mobile. With Surface, I just visit the full websites (Youtube, Engadget, CNN, Facebook, Amazon Cloud/Prime, etc.)
Web Browsing (tip) - Turn on tracking protection and add a few lists (Abine, EasyPrivacy, and Fanboy). That dramatically speeds up IE10 on Surface (and Desktop Windows 8 too).
Streaming - The Surface apps for Netflix and Hulu are great and stream quite smoothly. The HD is amazing, and headphones are rich sounding (if you're trying not to disturb a sleeping mate).
News - The Surface News app is actually quite good. I was a Flipboard ***** before, but I find the News app easier to navigate, giving me access to headlines quickly. I frequently switch sources (Reuters, ABC News, AP, etc.). I also use Bento for technology news - again an excellent way to navigate headlines.
Communications - I use Skype to keep in touch with distant friends - the video quality is not as good as an iPad, but works well as I don't really need to see HD video of my friend's messy kitchen in the background. I also use Lync for my corporate messaging and collaboration. The Surface Lync client is full featured, unlike the iPad or Android offerings.
Productivity - Nothing, and I mean nothing, compares to having full Word, Excel, and PowerPoint software. I routinely blow away my coworkers when I can open full Word documents, such as contracts, with complete red-line capabilities. My CFO drooled a little when he was able to open a complex Excel budget spreadsheet and work easily between tabs, inserting charts and pivot tables.
Productivity (tips) - You can map network drives on your AD servers, and add network printers (as long as there are built-in drivers - most HP LaserJets, Samsung, Lexmark, etc.).
Expandability - The ability to throw on a 1TB external drive, or a 64GB thumb drive, or the SD card from my Canon camera is a big bonus. I even connected a full mouse, because one of my coworkers hates trackpads.
Those categories aside, apps are software and they likely have bugs or need optimization. A few game apps I've tried lagged, but after updates they ran smoothly. I think the hardware can handle it, just the apps need to be optimized. Again, I'm not worried about lag in apps (mostly games) as I don't play too many games to get bent out of shape over.
So - to sum up... if you're looking for a gaming tablet, the Surface is a tough call. If you're looking for a productivity and/or streaming tablet for video and productive work, the Surface is an excellent choice. I personally think Surface (and more so Surface Pro) will supplant iPad as the dominant tablet in the corporate world.