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Handhelds Microsoft Upgrades Windows Hardware

Surface Pro 2 and Surface 2: Now With New Kickstand! 294

Posted by timothy
from the seeking-balance dept.
UnknowingFool writes "For consumers who had hoped that Microsoft would greatly upgrade their recent entries into the tablet market, leaks and rumors have said that both machines will receive modest hardware changes. Surface Pro 2 will sport new Haswell processors which will increase battery life to 7 hours. RAM is expected to increase from 4GB to 8GB. Surface (formerly RT) will get Tegra 4 processors. The only other confirmed change will be new kickstands that have 2 positions instead of one."
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Surface Pro 2 and Surface 2: Now With New Kickstand!

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  • Surface Pro (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Cid Highwind (9258) on Thursday September 05, 2013 @10:22AM (#44765423) Homepage

    Is it still going to cost as much as a 10" Android tablet AND a low-end laptop, while offering neither the portability of the first nor the big screen and hard drive of the second?

    Yeah, I think I hear another billion dollar write-off coming...

  • Re:Size does matter. (Score:5, Interesting)

    by rossdee (243626) on Thursday September 05, 2013 @10:44AM (#44765667)

    How about something the size of a magazine, you could still carry it in your briefcase or backpack with your lunch, and it would be easier to read things like magazines and newspapers on.

    And the stylus should have buttons and maybe a scroll gadget on, so you can do all the things you do with a mouse. Maybe even wired to the table so you don't lose it so easily. (Then you wouldnt need to have batteries in the stylus or worry about bluetooth.
    To save costs you could leaveout the camera(s) and microphone, you can always plug one in if you need it, and no fixed camera or mic means your privacy is a bit safer

  • by clinko (232501) on Thursday September 05, 2013 @11:00AM (#44765823) Homepage Journal

    I want a _Surface_Tablet_ because ________.

    Examples, leaving iPad's out:
    I want _a_Tivo_ because _I_don't_like_my_Cable_DVR_.

    I want a _Honda_ because _I_trust_the_brand_based_on_past_experience_.

    My point is that the Surface doesn't fit anything for me.

    Based on Microsoft's own site http://www.microsoft.com/surface/en-us/surface-with-windows-8-pro/ [microsoft.com]
    Microsoft believes our answers are :

    I want a _Surface_Tablet_ because _I_Need_Office_on_a_tablet_.

    I want a _Surface_Table_ because _I_need_a_neat_keyboard_on_a_tablet_.

    I want a _Surface_Table_ because _I_need_USB_Port_.

    I'm not the target market, but I don't know who is?

  • Find the graveyard (Score:5, Interesting)

    by onyxruby (118189) <onyxruby@@@comcast...net> on Thursday September 05, 2013 @11:04AM (#44765855)

    The more interesting question is where is the graveyard holding millions of unsold original Surface tablets? Were they dismantled in Asia? Were they buried next to ET? Were they lost in a warehouse and locked up only to be discovered in 2021? Have they been lost at sea along with the cargo ship necessary to hold them all?

    I find this question far more interesting than a new kickstand on a product that has failed before ever getting released.

  • by wjcofkc (964165) on Thursday September 05, 2013 @11:26AM (#44766057)
    Then again, it's not difficult to get confused about an MS product lineup these days. So do I understand that Surface RT is now just called Surface or Surface Pro while they then have the Surface Pro 2? Having Surface RT in the mix was confusing enough, but at least the RT implied something was different. Now they're both called Surface, dropping the RT on the ARM model? Huh? I can see this resulting in a lot of returns when people realize they purchased the wrong model the hard way. Or few returns since they aren't exactly selling. Did I RTFA too fast and miss something or what?
  • by MaWeiTao (908546) on Thursday September 05, 2013 @11:31AM (#44766125)

    The community here is doing a good job of driving me away from Slashdot as a source for tech news. Every single story that mentions Microsoft turns into a circle jerk bashing the company. Few here seem capable of having a mature discussion about the topic with the level of cynicism going beyond any sense of reason. What makes anything Microsoft is doing inherently inferior to Google, Apple or Sony? Excluding, of course, the fact that Microsoft remains the company it's cool to hate. Nevermind everything they've enabled over the last few decades.

    It's one thing when the topic specifically discusses Microsoft's missteps, but this is getting ridiculous.

    More RAM and a better processor, which entails almost every single hardware update ever, for some reason paints a lackluster picture when Microsoft is behind it. Other than the stupid decision Microsoft made in offering the Surface RT, there was nothing wrong with the hardware. I'd be more concerned if they went with a totally new form factor.

    And what's with the fixation on the new kickstand? It looks to me like tech specs were leaked and some internet twat specifically brought up the kickstand to turn the news into yet another anti-Microsoft joke. They don't even know what the kickstand improvements entail, but that's what this writer chose to emphasize.

    The ironic thing here is that Infoworld even listed that kickstand as one of the 10 things Microsoft needed to improve. Microsoft has done so and now they're bashing them for it. But some of the stuff they're complaining about seems unreasonable because they tolerate worse from Apple. I don't think I've ever seen a single person complain about Apple charging $40 for a rubber cover embedded with a few magnets. Not to say I don't think the Surface Pro isn't expensive, but it's also far closer to being a proper laptop than the iPad.

  • Re:Holy cow!! (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Voyager529 (1363959) <(moc.oohay) (ta) (925regayov)> on Thursday September 05, 2013 @11:31AM (#44766127)

    I'd say including an active digitiser in the original Surface Pro was pretty innovative. It's the first tablet to do so.

    Given that I had to google to figure out WTF that is, and given that you can already buy a stylus for about $15 which allows you to do the same thing on a 'normal' touchscreen ... what fraction of the market actually knows or cares about that?

    It sounds like niche functionality which is just increasing the cost of these tablets for little benefit to most people.

    But, hey, if that's a feature you need for what you're doing, run wild with it. That neither my iPad nor my Nexus 7 have it and I've never missed it (or known what it is) means that for me it's not differentiating technology for most people.

    I'd say both you and the grandparent missed the mark. the HTC Flyer had one, as does the Galaxy Note (both phone and tablet flavors), and both companies have had them on the market for over a year. The $15 stylus is a night-and-day difference from an active digitizer; it's clear you've never used one. They're significantly more precise, and have the ability to detect differences in pressure. I've also found that the $15 stylus offerings for capacitive screens tend to be inconsistent - straight lines frequently have gaps in them (making the use of Swype or Swiftkey Flow a nightmare), and even the premium ones feel so light and flimsy.

    As for it being a niche feature, Samsung sold 5 million Note 2 phones within the first three months of release...and that was still in 2012. If we assume that that's five million handsets and that Samsung never sold another one since, and that 80% of the people who bought one don't care about the S-Pen...that still means that a million people bought their Note 2 for its active digitizer.

  • by BLToday (1777712) on Thursday September 05, 2013 @12:40PM (#44766783)

    As one of the few Surface owners, I can say on a general level the hardware is solid but the software makes me want to start straggling some UI designers.

    Issues:
    * on screen keyboard is overlay, so some applications you can't see what you're typing.
    * some basic functions (ie. sleep timer) is on the Desktop interface, which makes no sense since MSFT is trying to push the Modern Interface. Plus, Desktop interface is a pain to use on a touchscreen
    * "Home" button is capacitive touch and if you use it in portrait mode you'll hit it accidentally very very often
    * factory reset takes 2 hours to complete. And then another hour or so to "update" the laptop. Makes me miss Apple's OTA updates.
    * to close an Internet Explorer (in Modern), sometimes its swipe up, click on the tab's "x", which switches the active tab to another tab, click "x" on that tab again. Other times its single click on the tab's "x" you want to close. No very consistent
    * on-screen keyboard pops always pop up when you want it, like when filling in text fields on a web page

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