11-28-2013 04:10 PM
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  1. WillysJeepMan's Avatar
    I was looking to get a Kindle, though, right about the time they dropped the price on the original Surface RT. I decided that since Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8 were working so well for me, I'd give a Surface RT a chance and bought one. It was an eye opener. This is a great little device; it has all but replaced by home laptop, and that's because it's not just a content consumption device like the iPad. With its USB port and Bluetooth connectivity, I can use external keyboards and mice, thumbdrives, external hard drives, you name it. With the built-in Skydrive and Office, I can do actual work just like I do in my office, not on some watered-down Office-compatible set of apps. I can take it with me, prop it up on a table, and turn it around so that other people can see what I'm looking at for presentations and such. And if I find myself limited because of the small screen? For $20 or so I can buy an adapter to hook up an external monitor. There is no other tablet which gives you that much functionality (and by that I mean iPad/Android - there are other Windows tablets which do).
    "Functionality" is a combination of what the hardware is capable of and what software is available to exploit that hardware. From a hardware standpoint, even the most vociferous anti-Microsoft bigot acknowledges that the Surface RT/2 hardware is top quality... in terms of build quality, design elements, and flexibility of ports.

    What is holding the Surface RT/2 back is the software element of "functionality" which leads in to your other comment...

    All the comments about lack of apps are worthy of the hand-job gesture. Sure, you can't install desktop x86 apps on the RT tablets, but if you want to install desktop x86 apps you shouldn't get an RT tablet; get the Pro. Or another, similar Windows 8 tablet from another manufacturer. The point is that it's a baseless comment.
    You have taken a very narrow view of the complaints regarding application availability (lack of legacy x86 support) and dismissed the issue out-of-hand (pun intended). Claiming that complaints regarding software availability are a "baseless comment" simply reveals how small a perspective you have on the issue.

    The outcry of a lack of support for legacy x86 apps IS a red herring trotted out (primarily) by Apple apologists. That doesn't mean that thinking people need to fall for it, or to give it more credence than to acknowledge that the Surface RT/2 does not in fact support those apps. All the more reason for being concerned for the continued lack of quality native WinRT apps.

    Owners of the Surface RT/2 can certainly acknowledge the true condition of the situation without having to blindly embrace the RT as perfect in all areas. I'm a huge fan of the RT/2, I enjoy and champion the things that the RT can do that no other tablet can do. But I see the tremendous untapped potential. I can be honest about that. As impossible as it might seem, I can be a fan of the RT/2 AND be frustrated by the current availability of applications. The two positions are NOT mutually exclusive.

    I'm not even referring to niche software like I've mentioned in the past (podcast production). There are some basic fundamental applications that are widely used on smartphones and tablets for other platforms, like a hierarchical/tree text/markdown editor that supports DropBox. I currently use Notational Velocity, nvAlt, & Nottingham (OSX), Epistle & NotationalAcceleration (Android), WriteRoom (iOS), but nothing native for Windows (though I use Windows Explorer and my favorite text editor to accomplish the same), and nothing for WinRT. This is something that people who actually use the "smart" part of their "smartphone" (or tablets) rely heavily on.

    Some will suggest EverNote... and I used it for quite a long time, but it is a "heavy" app employing a proprietary format, not quite the same thing.

    It's funny in an ironic sort of way that Apple fans defend Apple's decisions knowing that Apple couldn't give a rip about what those fans want, and yet Microsoft is a company that actually WILL listen to their customers, and its fans overwhelming blindly defend Microsoft too when if they had spoken up, it is quite possible that Microsoft would've listened.

    Oh well.
    rav16 likes this.
    11-26-2013 11:56 AM
  2. anony_mouse's Avatar
    Not sure if I am misunderstanding you, or if you misunderstand the Surface 2. The Surface 2 runs Windows RT. If what you are calling "proper" software are Windows legacy applications, then the Surface 2 will not run these. The Surface Pro and Pro 2 will.
    Actually, my apologies, I misread the OP's question (and for some reason I find the new names confusing - Surface RT/Pro v. Surface 2/Pro2 - but I think that's my problem). You can ignore most of my post, but I'd stick to my advice to try a Surface <whatever> in a shop, though.
    11-26-2013 12:04 PM
  3. iamtim's Avatar
    First off, my pops has a '41 Willys. Pre-Jeep, of course, but I find so very few people who know of Willys pre- or post-Jeep. Cool.

    Claiming that complaints regarding software availability are a "baseless comment" simply reveals how small a perspective you have on the issue.
    It's one thing to take an anonymous comment and state it baseless; it's a very different thing to quote one person specifically and accuse them of having a small perspective. Tread lightly. :)

    I can be a fan of the RT/2 AND be frustrated by the current availability of applications.
    Of course. And I can be a fan of Windows RT and be perfectly happy with the current availability of applications. When one makes a post containing their opinions - in my case, what I called my reality - one speaks only from their unique perspective, right? From my unique perspective, if you find WinRT lacking in apps or app support then it's not the platform for you; switch to the Surface Pro where you can use any application you can use on a regular Windows desktop or laptop.

    There's no need to take up the RT banner and campaign for it to be a full solution for every need, with as much application support as its big brother has. It is what it is, and that's why the Surface Pro exists. Use the tool that suits the job, not the other way around.
    11-26-2013 12:21 PM
  4. Chris Sandiford's Avatar
    I bought an Acer tablet to try out Win 8 when it first came out and as much as I enjoyed the tabletty aspect of it, switching to desktop to carry out Office tasks or work in that environment was not a comfortable experience.
    I can't see how Win 8 works 100% with a tablet.

    I sold my Acer and have just got an Acer Aspire V5 laptop with touch screen and it's amazing.
    I get the touch for Modern UI, games, Fruity Loops etc and then have the benefit of the keyboard for typing like this.

    It's a winning combo.
    11-26-2013 01:28 PM
  5. Oliver Newell's Avatar
    The gadget show is terrible now. I don't watch it, loads of others are not and their ratings and views have gone down, especially since many more "trusted" online critics have appeared.
    11-26-2013 02:47 PM
  6. lovenokia's Avatar
    So I was watching the Gadget Show last night on TV (UK). Not something I normally watch and they had a someone reviewing three tablets, the Surface 2, the Asus Transformer Android tablet and of course the iPad Air. The reviewer took them all to a school to use and gave them their usual ratings out of 5. The tablets were used in three different areas, typing, camera (photos/video), and art (touch screen sensitivity).

    With the Surface 2 is was the usual statements I've heard a few times from other reviewers, lack of apps, confusing, cannot run legacy software, Office is not touch optimized, here's a link to the review: The Gadget Show | Microsoft Surface 2 review by The Gadget Show

    On top of that they didn't like the HD display ratio in portrait mode....

    The Gadget Show has had a love affair with all things Apple for some time. The reviewer gave the Air 5/5 and the Surface 2 3/5 (same for the Transformer). The Air had more apps and was the better productive tablet because of that. Also didn't need the keyboard because it was so easy to type on the the tablet (it won the typing round and art round). He didn't like the keyboards on screen or off of the Surface 2.

    Now I've been seriously thinking of buying a Surface 2 as a productive tablet but I'm having a hard time convincing the wife when these types of reviews keep popping up. I know reviewers are horrible when it comes to technology these days, if it's not Apple it's too complicated, is the mantra. Add the lack of apps statements and it becomes more troublesome.

    What I want to know is, what is your experience with the Surface 2? I need some good feedback from actual users if it's worth it to buy one. I'm tired of these crap reviews. If I'm going to drop anywhere from 400 to 600 on a device I want to know if I'm wasting my time or not.
    This was such a stupid review, like really, being a student I would never type a homework assignment on a touchscreen. It would bed torture, or rather a punishment to do that. The review was so fake, the reviewer said it is easier to type the english paper of the ipad is flat out lieing. Ms word beats any office software the ipad has hands down, and the guy does not know what he is doing clearly.
    11-26-2013 07:58 PM
  7. hagjohn's Avatar
    I think the people who pan Surface, don't understand it.
    11-26-2013 08:11 PM
  8. stephen_az's Avatar
    I was hoping people would give me some feedback here so I didn't have to go searching everywhere.
    ....then why not just ask questions instead of posting a thread with an inflammatory title and link to a bad review?
    11-26-2013 08:41 PM
  9. N_LaRUE's Avatar
    ....then why not just ask questions instead of posting a thread with an inflammatory title and link to a bad review?
    The title wasn't meant to be inflammatory. Just attention grabbing.

    I was hoping to get some clarity on the Surface 2 by explaining my concerns using a review done by a TV show, which lots of people still watch. I was hoping that some users would be able to explain to me where the reviewer and others have gone wrong or where they might be right.

    Problem with posting is most people seem to concentrate on one aspect of your post. I've had this issue with emails where I have asked several questions and receive an answer back on one of them. Not sure where that comes from but my guess would I think people get lazy looking at screens. My wife has the same issue when emailing people as well.

    As for the negative review, I think this is something MS needs to deal with and address. I live in the UK and the marketing for the Surface 2 is non-existent. Worse still is that the shops that sell the Surface tend to shove them in a corner, have them password locked so you can't use it, that's if it's on. I'm all for buying MS products but I'd like some idea of what I'm buying.
    11-27-2013 02:44 AM
  10. anony_mouse's Avatar
    I'm all for buying MS products but I'd like some idea of what I'm buying.
    Have you seen Microsoft Surface Tablets - The Windows Tablet That Does More ? It's an annoying site - phrases like "Meet Surface 2" are used, and there is some nasty small print, e.g. "Surface 2 comes with Microsoft Office 2013 RT. Some functionality may be limited. " ('may be limited' - is it limited or not?) - but there is lots of information and you should be able to get a good idea of what you are thinking of buying.
    11-27-2013 03:18 AM
  11. N_LaRUE's Avatar
    Have you seen Microsoft Surface Tablets - The Windows Tablet That Does More ? It's an annoying site - phrases like "Meet Surface 2" are used, and there is some nasty small print, e.g. "Surface 2 comes with Microsoft Office 2013 RT. Some functionality may be limited. " ('may be limited' - is it limited or not?) - but there is lots of information and you should be able to get a good idea of what you are thinking of buying.
    I'm not a big online shopper unless it's things I already know about. I actually like to get a feel for things before purchasing. That's why I was trying to get some insight from real users of Surface 2. If I do get more serious about it then I will go to a shop and make sure I can try one first, that's of course if they can figure out how to turn it on and get through the password. If you haven't guessed my opinion of most shop employees is fairly low.
    11-27-2013 03:39 AM
  12. Pete's Avatar
    Surface 2 is a great device. Since I've got it, my top-of-the-line Levono Ultrabook and Nexus 7 has been gathering dust. That being said, I'm not what you call a power user and don't use a huge amount of apps.

    People say that Office isn't touch friendly, but it's actually pretty useful - there's an icon on the toolbar that makes the icons spaced out a bit more to help with fat fingers. Yes, the finer functionality does need nimble fingertips, but the often used features are eminently pokeable.

    I'd advise you to take a punt on buying one, if it doesn't meet your needs, you'll be able to return it for a refund under the distance selling regulations.

    I have an idea that you'll get on with it just fine as you're already indoctrinated into how WP8 works.
    11-27-2013 07:51 AM
  13. GreatCanadian's Avatar
    Actually, my apologies, I misread the OP's question (and for some reason I find the new names confusing - Surface RT/Pro v. Surface 2/Pro2 - but I think that's my problem). You can ignore most of my post, but I'd stick to my advice to try a Surface <whatever> in a shop, though.
    No sir, I do not believe that is your problem. I think your confusion is Microsoft's fault. They should have called the OS on the Surface Windows Mobile or something to help people differentiate between Surface and Surface Pro. Unless you're really digging into forums to research before buying a Surface, I think most buyers would not know the difference.
    anony_mouse likes this.
    11-27-2013 07:56 AM
  14. JerseySal's Avatar
    Every Windows tablet I've owned or played with at stores has a far better on screen keyboard than my wife's older iPad and iPad Air. That guy is full of crap.
    11-27-2013 07:56 AM
  15. gwinegarden's Avatar
    "Can't run legacy apps" -- well there is not one x86 app, on my desktop, that I want to run on my Surface2, and, of course, the iPad can't run them either.
    "Lack of apps" -- there, certainly, might be some, out there, that I would want, but I haven't found any.

    How about what the iPad cannot do like connect to a USB3 device or connect via HDMI, or expand memory using a SD card?
    11-27-2013 09:46 AM
  16. neo158's Avatar
    I don't trust any reviews on websites, on TV or in magazines. I base my opinion of a product on my usage of it, granted with Surface that's a little difficult here in the UK. I wrote the majority of my dissertation on my 1st Gen Surface so my opinion is that for productivity the Surface family of tablets are the best on the market.
    N_LaRUE likes this.
    11-27-2013 11:01 AM
  17. Neo Nuke's Avatar
    I've had an ipad 2, ipad with retina display, a Motorola Xoom, surface rt, and ow a surface 2. The surface 2 is the best tablet I have ever owned. My gripes with the first one was load time on apps and lack of customizability with metro backgrounds. All my gripes have practically been solved. This things screams. I'm super entrenched in Microsoft services because they work so flawlessly together. Having the extra 200gb of skydive and the best of Skype makes this tablet amazing. Only having LTE would make this better. Having full adobe flash for streaming overseas soccer games and school web sites is super useful. Microsoft office and the USB, microsd, and HDMI ports make this the one device to take with you. Love it so much more than the surface rt and ipad
    Last edited by Neo Nuke; 12-02-2013 at 07:34 PM. Reason: misspelling
    dznk, GSOgymrat and N_LaRUE like this.
    11-27-2013 11:31 AM
  18. Angry_Mushroom's Avatar
    LaRue... here's the thing. The Surface 2 happens to be a pretty specific tablet. You must ask yourself... what are you going to use your tablet for? If it is playing angry birds and using bubble wrap popping apps... go for an ipad. If you plan on doing email, paper work, and excel stuff. I'd say go for the Surface 2. It's all about your needs. iPad is better at somethings, and the Surface 2 is better at others.
    11-27-2013 01:08 PM
  19. GSOgymrat's Avatar
    I've had an ipad 2, ipad with retina display, a Motorola Xoom, surface rt, and ow a surface 2. The surface 2 is the best tablet I have ever owned.
    I've got an iPad, Nook HD and Surface 2. Surface 2 is by far my favorite. I tend to dismiss a lot of reviewers on this subject because most of them come from iPad and find Surface "confusing" because it is different. Also most reviewers don't really use Surface for any length of time, I am talking weeks not days, and therefore don't see how many things this tablet does and does really well. For example, some reviewers complain about the screen dimensions but don't appreciate that when you split the screen and are composing your Word document on one side, have the book you are referencing on the other and you are typing on an illuminated keyboard, the screen dimensions make sense. They don't see when you are in Facebook and you click on a link the video plays on one side and you continue scrolling your news feed on the other. It all works together. I don't hate Apple and I think iPad is a great device and does what it was designed to do very well... but Surface does more.
    N_LaRUE likes this.
    11-27-2013 07:50 PM
  20. anon(8032808)'s Avatar
    The Surface 2 is basically an iPad for $100 cheaper, a better tablet / touch OS, better universal compatibility (e.g USB), and a few less apps. Depends on how much those iPad apps are worth to you.
    11-28-2013 12:55 AM
  21. N_LaRUE's Avatar
    LaRue... here's the thing. The Surface 2 happens to be a pretty specific tablet. You must ask yourself... what are you going to use your tablet for? If it is playing angry birds and using bubble wrap popping apps... go for an ipad. If you plan on doing email, paper work, and excel stuff. I'd say go for the Surface 2. It's all about your needs. iPad is better at somethings, and the Surface 2 is better at others.
    I don't think the Surface 2 should be a 'specific' type of tablet if they plan to sell more of them. That seems rather short sighted on MS's part if that were true. They only reason why iPad has anything over the Surface 2 is due to app availability. Nothing else. That and better marketing from Apple and with all the reviewers loving their 'i' toys its got free marketing and continuous slagging of MS.

    Let's be clear here. I'm no MS fanboy I've just used their products for a very long time now.
    11-28-2013 01:58 AM
  22. N_LaRUE's Avatar
    I don't trust any reviews on websites, on TV or in magazines. I base my opinion of a product on my usage of it, granted with Surface that's a little difficult here in the UK. I wrote the majority of my dissertation on my 1st Gen Surface so my opinion is that for productivity the Surface family of tablets are the best on the market.
    This is what I was hoping to hear. Real world application. Thank you. :)
    11-28-2013 01:59 AM
  23. N_LaRUE's Avatar
    I've had an ipad 2, ipad with retina display, a Motorola Xoom, surface rt, and ow a surface 2. The surface 2 is the best tablet I have ever owned. My gripes with the first one was load time on apps and lack of customizability with metro backgrounds. All my gripes have practically been solved. This things screams. I'm super entrenched in Microsoft services because they work so flawlessly together. Having the extra 200gb of skydive and the best of Skype makes this tablet amazing. Only having LTE would make this better. Having full adobe flash for streaming overseas soccer games and school web sites is super useful. Microsoft office and the USB, microsd, and Hemingway ports make this the one device to take with you. Love it so much more than the surface rt and ipad
    LTE would have been nice and I suspect the next gen will probably have it. It's not a priority for me but I would like the option to at least use a USB dongle if I wanted it. Though I can just simply use my WP.
    11-28-2013 02:00 AM
  24. Pete's Avatar
    I'm not sure that "next gen" when it comes to Windows RT tablets is worth considering at this point, since there might not be a Surface 3 as we know it.

    With Microsoft bringing together the three flavours of Windows 8, I've already seen a newspaper report of Windows RT being killed (as a product) sometime next year.

    But yes, internet sharing with WP works just fine.
    11-28-2013 03:18 AM
  25. N_LaRUE's Avatar
    I'm not sure that "next gen" when it comes to Windows RT tablets is worth considering at this point, since there might not be a Surface 3 as we know it.

    With Microsoft bringing together the three flavours of Windows 8, I've already seen a newspaper report of Windows RT being killed (as a product) sometime next year.

    But yes, internet sharing with WP works just fine.
    Was that the Guardian article? I wouldn't put too much into that. Also I thought the process was likely to allow running of WP apps or cross platform apps across all OS then merge. We really don't know do we?
    11-28-2013 05:25 AM
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