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Microsoft Surface Pro tablet labelled a ‘tweener’

Reuters/ AFR | Feb. 7, 2013
Negative reviews were given from being too costly and power-hungry.

"(But) you can't rest the Surface Pro comfortably on your lap without it flopping around. You can't adjust the angle of the screen when it's propped on a table with the built-in kickstand," Kovach added.

"You need to spend at least another $US100 to get the full laptop-like experience with one of the special keyboard covers. At 10 inches, the screen feels a bit small for traditional desktop computing.

"The cheapest model only has 23 GB of free storage, so you'll have to buy a separate memory card because you'll definitely need more than that."

David Pierce, writing on The Verge tech news site, singled out the high quality of the screen, quick startup time, the USB port on the charging hub and pressure-sensitive stylus.

But he criticised the lack of Microsoft's Office suite of applications - which have to be purchased separately - and its general awkwardness.

"Even a well-executed Surface still doesn't work for me, and I'd bet it doesn't work for most other people either," Pierce wrote.

"It's really tough to use on anything but a desk, and the wide, 16:9 aspect ratio pretty severely limits its usefulness as a tablet anyway," Pierce added.

"It's too big, too fat, and too reliant on its power cable to be a competitive tablet, and it's too immutable to do everything a laptop needs to do. In its quest to be both, the Surface is really neither."

Available in 64 and 128 gigabyte versions, both with wifi-only connectivity, the Surface Pro starts at $US899, excluding a $US120-plus keyboard. That is $US200 more expensive than a comparable iPad and closer in price to the 64 GB MacBook Air laptop at $US999.

 

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