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Microsoft Handhelds Windows Technology

Why Microsoft's Surface Pro Could Fail 442

Nerval's Lobster writes "Microsoft's Surface Pro boasts one feature that could rapidly become an Achilles Heel, especially if Microsoft intends for the device to compete against Apple's iPad and a host of lightweight Google Android touch-screens. In a Nov. 29 Tweet to a customer, the official Surface Twitter feed claimed: 'We expect it [Surface Pro] to have approx. half the battery life of Surface with Windows RT.' That means Surface Pro will have roughly four hours of battery life. That's roughly half the battery life (if not less) of Apple's various iPads, the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1, Research In Motion's PlayBook, Hewlett-Packard's now-cancelled TouchPad, and Motorola's all-but-forgotten Xoom. In other words, pretty much every tablet currently on the market. Nor can the Surface Pro compete with other tablets on price. The 64GB version of the device will retail for $899, with the 128GB version coming in a little higher at $999."
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Why Microsoft's Surface Pro Could Fail

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday November 30, 2012 @12:26PM (#42142559)

    The jury is still out, of course, but I'm going to take a hard look at the Surface Pro because it's an ultra portable, fully powered laptop. I have a Nexus 7 and they are in no way comparable. The Nexus is for light websurfing and gaming on the couch, the Surface could be for professional use as my main work computer.

  • by xxxJonBoyxxx ( 565205 ) on Friday November 30, 2012 @12:26PM (#42142567)

    Forget battery life - price is way too high.

    I'd love to have a 7-8 inch Surface...if the price was around $250-280 and it included Microsoft Office. Instead, I'm moving my wife and kids Nexus 7s ($200/pop) and hooking them up to Google Docs. I've even abandoned my iPad/iPod infrastructure at this point - tablets are way too fragile (and easily stolen) to be paying $400+ for each one.

  • by Missing.Matter ( 1845576 ) on Friday November 30, 2012 @12:37PM (#42142751)
    Exactly. This is for people like me who bought an iPad hoping it would replace my old Dell Latitude XT tablet i used for note taking in class and as a research notebook. I am sorely disappointed with the iPad's note taking capabilities, but still carry it around with my laptop due to its convenience on planes and while traveling in general. A device like the surface pro is a perfect replacement for my iPad and laptop for the work I do. For $1000 I could buy it, or a tablet + laptop and end up paying more money and carrying two devices.

    I didn't buy a surface rt because it doesn't solve my problem any better than the iPad, but the surface pro is actually offers many benefits over the iPad. Battery life is not one, but it's more powerful, has an active digitizer, and can run any windows x86 windows software, so i see it as a worth while tradeoff.
  • by Luveno ( 575425 ) on Friday November 30, 2012 @12:46PM (#42142965)
    Reflecting back, it is sort of amazing how far Microsoft has fallen. From being nearly synonymous with everything computer related to now being the last one you think of when it comes to the technology that is nearest to us (our cell phones and tablets), it is stunning. And everything they make now looks like a desperate me-too move. Even more broadly, just a few years ago I was working in all Microsoft platforms from server and web development to desktop and office automation. Now, with the exception of Exchange, I don't even see Microsoft products. Amazing.
  • by joh ( 27088 ) on Friday November 30, 2012 @01:12PM (#42143473)

    It competes with ultrabooks. Unfortunately, it doesn't compare all that favourably to ultrabooks either (about the same price, same weight, smaller screen, no keyboard included), and stealing sales from Wintel ultrabooks doesn't really help Microsoft or Intel.

    Yeah, it's a tablet that actually is a laptop that you can't use on your lap and is delivered without a keyboard anyway. Basically it's just an expensive PC that tries hard to look like a tablet. Because tablets are hot right now. So MS thinks that selling a bad tablet that also is a bad ultrabook must sell like hot cakes, because everybody badly wants the "full PC experience" everywhere.

    Some people will love that thing, most won't care at all.

    I think what MS will never understand is the simple fact that most people just hate PCs.

  • by Missing.Matter ( 1845576 ) on Friday November 30, 2012 @01:18PM (#42143581)

    Anyone else tired of the constant negative stream of non-sequitir flamebait summaries and articles on Windows 8 or even Microsoft/Apple on Slashdot and any and all positive or neutral news being totally ignored?

    Let's see...

    Monday - Windows 8 PCs Still Throttled By Crapware
    Tuesday - Hello, I'm a Mac. And I'm a $248 Win8 PC.
    Thursday - NPD Group Analysts Say Windows 8 Sales Sluggish
    Friday - Why Microsoft's Surface Pro Could Fail

    Also, note how news on Tuesday that Microsoft has sold 40M Windows 8 licenses so far completely missed Slashdot's front page... only to be briefly mentioned two days later in the NPD story summary. But when there was a rumor that Windows 8 sales were below expectations, there it was [] hanging on the front page.

  • by mystikkman ( 1487801 ) on Friday November 30, 2012 @03:21PM (#42145761)

    Can the iPad or a Android Transformer or Nexus do any of the following?

    1) It has a fully powered USB 3.0 port, connect any and all your devices you want to, even simultaneously with a powered hub
    2) You can connect a Nexus tablet or phone and develop and test Android applications on it with Eclipse.
    3) Has an active real digitizer and comes with Pen input, great for classroom and meeting use, especially combined with One Note
    4) Can run the real Photoshop and not the lite crippled touch based stuff available for the iPad
    5) Can run touch apps and browsing for couch use, although an additional cheap 7" tablet might be good for couch, bed and bathroom use.
    6) Does not consume 32GB+, perhaps around 15-20GB.
    7) Put in or swap through one or multiple 32GB/64GB/128GB SDXC cards. Upgrade to higher capacity or more in the future as prices come down.
    8) Use real touch optimized apps and games on it, like Fruit Ninja. The Macbook Air fails at this.
    9) Comes with builtin Defender(MSE) that's barely noticeable in daily use. Disable it if you're a capable geek trying to optimize the system.
    10) Comes with a 1080p touch screen and a mini display port supporting a monitor upto 2560x1644 resolution
    11) Alleged trainwreck UI is specially optimized for a device like the Surface.
    12) Does not come with a BIOS. Comes with UEFI which has many more features but boots very very fast, like in 7 or 8 seconds. Update your hate machine.
    13) Steve Ballmer? Ok you got me, Surface sucks if you're attracted to Steve Ballmer who you seem unhealthily obsessed with. Stay away. If not, there's some cool hardware and software in there.

  • by Jeremiah Cornelius ( 137 ) on Friday November 30, 2012 @04:09PM (#42146583) Homepage Journal

    You are a well-known MS booster. Your posting history would differ very little, were you actually paid to carry their water in this forum.

    The fact is - besides a two-post detour on sleeping-pills and a catalogue of south-Asian acheivers - you are a single-issue poster, delivering opinion and rebuttal almost exclusively on Microsoft products and that of their OEM ecosystem, versus Google and Apple.

    With that out of the way, let us respond. None of these capabilities or rebuttal points mean anything to those who will by tablets. Not even to the developers in my company.

  • by Jeremiah Cornelius ( 137 ) on Friday November 30, 2012 @04:30PM (#42146891) Homepage Journal

    You are new here - and have no sense of humor, either.

    I despise the stock market - which is a "house wins the take" game.

    The company at which I am employed is hardly "pico". I was formerly employed by Microsoft - and certainly understand just how badly they suck at product and R&D.

    They are EXCELLENT at building a sustainable developer ecosystem. The model is one I champion. However, they suck so bad at everything in their core market, that the developers are abandoning this ecosystem at a rate rivaled only by how they signed-on, at the advent of Windows 3.0.

When a fellow says, "It ain't the money but the principle of the thing," it's the money. -- Kim Hubbard