Microsoft Surface Pro
Right before I left tonight a consultant we work with on occasion was in and showed me his Win8 tablet and some of the stuff he's been working on. The software doesn't look terribly different from his older stuff just formatted for the touchscreen, but what I was interested in was his tablet. Although he didn't say so, it looks like the Surface Pro which is the Microsoft tablet that has a desktop class processor in it (which means it competes against laptops as opposed to the slower ARM based Surface RT which competes more with the iPad and a slew of android tablets. The two models are discussed in this article. My first thoughts follow...
I guess my first impression of the Surface Pro is - yikes, its heavy. Its powerful enough to run desktop software, but doesn't have an integrated keyboard (like a laptop does) so you end up (as our consultant does) carrying around a wireless keyboard separately. Hardly competition to a laptop which you can at least close to protect the screen and have a keyboard already connected when you open it. It does seem powerful, but in my experience the more powerful the processor, the faster you kill the battery - one of the main benefits about the current low-power tablets is that they tend to have longer battery life than laptops do. Not likely for this device! The faster processor gives you the ability to run desktop class software, which might be good if you have legacy Windows software like Outlook or Photoshop, or wait - run Photoshop on a tablet? How terrible and useless would that be? You only have 32GB of space, and the screen is miniscule. Certainly you're not going to be running Outlook on this thing, right? Don't they have a decent email client for the tablet? And just think - you can run all your old crappy legacy windows software (none of which is optimized for touchscreen and instead assumes the old mouse paradigm) and for that privilege you can carry a heavier device, have (probably) crappy battery life, and either wish you had a wireless keyboard half the time or lug one around. Missing the point of the tablet I think.
This consultant seems like every Microsoft guy I've ever met - so sure that the reason I don't like stuff (if I don't) is because I don't understand how good it is for me, all the while telling me to do things their way and not the way I want to. I'm not talking about this guy's software which seems just fine but rather the mentality of the Microsoft way which, it seems, applies to their new tablets too. The way of most tech companies right before they implode and begin the death spiral into irrelevancy.