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  1. rocketboy's Avatar
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       #1  
    Right after mentioning "what's the big deal about apps?" my wife said, "I'm thinking about getting a tablet for the commute so I can do work." This means Office. So don't care about apps + want to run Office = Surface RT right?

    So I know Office will run in Desktop Mode. Can someone with a Surface tell me how well does the touch screen work for navigating a document with desktop mode? Scrolling, paging up/down, maybe an occassional edit with onscreen keyboard.I can't imagine the stand/keyboard cover combination being good to use on one's lap so I don't know if that's really a solution.

    The other option is some kind of ultrabook but that's clearly heavier. The other other option is iPad when it gets office.
  2. inteller's Avatar
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    #2  
    Word runs in Desktop mode, but it runs in a full screen fashion and most of the interface is optimized for touch. For reviewing documents? Perfectly fine.

    the iPad, if and when it gets Office, will only include the ability to view documents for free, and a subscription is required if you want to edit those. It really makes iThing owners suckers and I would avoid that option like the plague when a Surface can do all that built in -for free-
  3. fardream's Avatar
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    #3  
    With onscreen keyboard it's terrible, but that cover in fact works quite well
  4. NickA's Avatar
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    #4  
    The Office suite is not optimized for touch at all. It's Microsoft Office, on a 10.6 inch screen. At times it's difficult to navigate.

    The real downer is it's only for personal use, so no commercial work. Which means you (or her company) needs a license to use it for work.

    The Surface isn't too bad to use on your lap with the keyboard though. I do it a lot. There is always the Asus running RT that has a normal keyboard and more like a netbook. It would probably be easier to use on your lap.

    And about the iPad... Pages, the Word equivalent, is touch optimized on the ipad and it is Word compatible. It only cost 10 bucks and you can use it for whatever you want. If you wanted to go the Android route, they also have Office comparable apps.
  5. rocketboy's Avatar
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       #5  
    Wait. I have one post saying it is optimized for touch and another that does not? What gives?

    Man, who spends that much time on Office for personal use? There are games to play! I hadn't considered the personal license thing. Surface RT seems to be such a niche thing - too limited for "real" work and not yet competitive with others for general entertainment. Might need to reconsider the Yoga or something.

    In any case, she's been picky about not using Word clones like OpenOffice etc. Especially since the change tracking and formatting needs to be precise.
    Last edited by rocketboy; 11-20-2012 at 08:57 AM. Reason: wrong word
  6. NickA's Avatar
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    #6  
    It's not touch optimized in the way a Metro (or Modern UI) app would be. It's looks the same as it does on my desktop, just smaller, so some things are hard to do using your finger. Basically, it's Office compiled for the RT.

    I know what you mean about Office and personal use. I can't remember the last time I used Office for personal use. I think the RT license even says you can't use it for non-profit use either. I guess students would have a use for it though in it's current license scheme.

    I like the Surface, and it's batter life. I strongly considered (and still am) the Yoga, but the Surface is so much more portable for me. I suspect when the Surface Pro comes out I will end up selling my RT and getting the Pro, mainly because there are some applications I'd like to run, like Visual Studio, so when I'm away from home I can still do work if needed (without lugging my laptop around).
  7. VidJuhEffex's Avatar
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    #7  
    It IS optimized for touch in the sense that they have a touch mode toggle that increases the spacing between buttons and does some stuff under the hood in terms of predicative behavior to avoid misclicks etc. I don't use word as much as I use oneNote and I know in oneNote single finger scrolling is enabled so swiping down a document is super easy.

    As for the business/personal license issue, and this is a serious question, is that on the honor system or something? I mean if her work sends her a .doc file and she reads it? I mean how would they know? Or if she creates a file for her work on the surface? At that point its a personal ethics code issue, no? (and I know RT office is crippled in terms of extensions anyway, business license or not)
  8. stephen_az's Avatar
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    #8  
    Quote Originally Posted by rocketboy View Post
    Wait. I have one post saying it is optimized for touch and another that does not? What gives?

    Man, who spends that much time on Office for personal use? There are games to play! I hadn't considered the personal license thing. Surface RT seems to be such a niche thing - too limited for "real" work and not yet competitive with others for general entertainment. Might need to reconsider the Yoga or something.

    In any case, she's been picky about not using Word clones like OpenOffice etc. Especially since the change tracking and formatting needs to be precise.
    Office 2013 is sufficiently optimized for touch and works just fine on Surface RT. The reason it looks like Office 2013 on a desktop is it is supposed to look like Office 2013 on a desktop. They weighted common user experience above a new interface and I agree with the decision. They also made the essential change in Office with the adoption of the ribbon a few years ago. If I am working on a document on my laptop at the office and then want to do some edits on a tablet at a coffee shop or in a meeting, I don't want to have to think about how to do something on one versus the other. Personally, I also do not get the "its not touch optimized" comments from some circles since they are frequently coming from those who complained that the adoption of the ribbon in Office 2010 was really more useful for touch but Windows 7 wasn't. Set up the ribbon the way you want it and it is very touch friendly and far more useful then some crappy string of unlabeled buttons and document full of poorly formatted text on any Android tablet. BTW, if you flip the tablet to portrait mode, you also can review and edit documents rather easily even without the touch/type cover.

    With respect to the personal license issue, it would be nice if people would just give that subject a rest, or at least get some perspective. First, there are no Office police out there who are going to confiscate your tablet because you opened a work document on a train, etc.. Second, if a business is buying the tablet, it has been made clear that the license transfer is pretty painless. I would expect that people do know that unless you buy the single user-single device license for Office 2013, it can be used on two machines (minimum) and with the new Office 2013 subscriptions up to five machines per license. Finally (and somewhat related to my first point), if it is your personal tablet, it is highly unlikely that Microsoft is ever going to question how you use it. The issue was (and still is) only about what happens when businesses are buying for business use. Some of this stuff gets exceedingly silly anyway. You can now, for instance, get an annual subscription to use the full desktop version of ArcGIS at home for $100/year. How many people do you think are really going to use it because they do geo-statistical modeling for fun in the evening or want to geoprocess children's soccer scores by zip code/neighborhood, etc., etc.?
  9. inteller's Avatar
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    #9  
    whoah....this was the last place to see an ArcGIS reference lol....BTW it sure would be nice for their app to get out of preview mode.
  10. retyler's Avatar
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    #10  
    Rocketboy, I would wait and get an x86 tablet running Win8. They should be out during the 1st quarter of 2013. Microsoft is releasing an x86 Slate in January.
  11. ezcats's Avatar
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    #11  
    Quote Originally Posted by retyler View Post
    Rocketboy, I would wait and get an x86 tablet running Win8. They should be out during the 1st quarter of 2013. Microsoft is releasing an x86 Slate in January.
    Disagree. If it's only for Office tasks and other things that you would do on a tablet (not Visual Studio or something), then the RT is more than enough.
  12. NickA's Avatar
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    #12  
    Quote Originally Posted by VidJuhEffex View Post
    As for the business/personal license issue, and this is a serious question, is that on the honor system or something? I mean if her work sends her a .doc file and she reads it? I mean how would they know? Or if she creates a file for her work on the surface? At that point its a personal ethics code issue, no? (and I know RT office is crippled in terms of extensions anyway, business license or not)
    Quote Originally Posted by swyost View Post
    With respect to the personal license issue, it would be nice if people would just give that subject a rest, or at least get some perspective. First, there are no Office police out there who are going to confiscate your tablet because you opened a work document on a train, etc..
    Of course there are no Office Police, but a licensing system is put in place for a reason. Otherwise, why not just give the software away? It's one thing to disagree with it, but another thing to blatantly abuser it. If you know you shouldn't be using the software without a license, then buy a license. It's the right thing to do.
  13. NickA's Avatar
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    #13  
    Quote Originally Posted by ezcats View Post
    Disagree. If it's only for Office tasks and other things that you would do on a tablet (not Visual Studio or something), then the RT is more than enough.
    While I agree with you to some extent, there is always the "what if" factor. Especially after you get the tablet, you start exploring what else it can do.
  14. pedenske's Avatar
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    #14  
    Quote Originally Posted by retyler View Post
    Rocketboy, I would wait and get an x86 tablet running Win8. They should be out during the 1st quarter of 2013. Microsoft is releasing an x86 Slate in January.
    I have to disagree if the main purpose of the device is for office docs. Only RT comes with Office 2013. Windows 8 and Windows 8 Pro don't include office. You have to buy it separately. That's another $100-ish on top of the device you choose.
    Announcing the Windows 8 Editions
    Last edited by pedenske; 11-20-2012 at 02:45 PM. Reason: added link to editions
    Blackberry Pearl (8130) -> LG Optimus 7 (LG E-900h) -> Samsung Ativ S (SGH-T899M) -> Nokia Lumia 520-> Nokia Lumia 625
  15. inteller's Avatar
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    #15  
    many people getting a pro will have home use license access through work so it won't be a big deal. That's really how it works how with RT, if your company has access to home use licensing through SA, you can use the RT for biz use. The fair use rights conferred are really lightweight and almost any scenario qualifies.
  16. reepS's Avatar
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    #16  
    I use the RT w/ type cover daily for grad school. It handles one note, word, excel, and ppt work just as well as my laptop. If you want a tablet to do work on, and not play games then the RT works perfectly. And it is optimized for touch, I switch btwn using my finger and mouse naturally, and tend to use my finger more than the touchpad.

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