The Verge reviews Microsoft’s Surface Pro: Too big, too fat, frustratingly poor battery life; it just feels limiting

“I’ve been waiting to review the Microsoft Surface Pro for a long time,” David Pierce reports for The Verge. “When I decided to make the switch to Windows 8, I did a pretty thorough survey of the computing landscape, and Microsoft’s second Surface seemed like it might be the one for me.”

MacDailyNews Take: David needs a new transit.

“Microsoft has proven it can build a nice-looking tablet with the Surface RT. Unfortunately, though, that was one of the only things the RT had going for it, and the brutal performance problems outweighed the aesthetic niceties,” Pierce reports. “The Surface RT was riddled with compromises, from the odd omissions — five-finger multitouch rather than ten — to the dealbreaking performance problems. The Surface Pro has none of those.”

Pierce reports, “Sure, it’s heavier and thicker than the Surface RT and has frustratingly poor battery life, but it’s worth both the tradeoff and the extra expense. If you’re going to buy a Surface, buy the Surface Pro. Period. (And buy the 128GB model.) But if you’re going to buy a $900 tablet, get the decked-out iPad with LTE and 128GB of storage… Even a well-executed Surface still doesn’t work for me, and I’d bet it doesn’t work for most other people either. 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.”

MacDailyNews Take: Steve Ballmer, big dummySigh. As we wrote last October:

That dumbass kickstand is yet another ill-considered, misguided, corporate committee-driven “differentiation” squirted out of Microsoft’s back door unbidden onto the public.

Microsoft is staffed with stupid and/or lazy people. There’s no other explanation besides crippling narcissism – which is a very real possibility. Most people use iPads while lounging around. All Microsoft’s Surface “team” had to do was buy some real iPads and use them for a few weeks. Steve Jobs himself even demonstrated the iPad while reclining in a comfy leather chair, not sitting upright at a friggin’ desk. Microsoft was shown the way and, once again, they failed to properly follow Apple’s lead. By now, that’s just stupid and/or lazy.

Microsoft suffers from delusions of grandeur. They think they matter and that people will buy their pretend iPad over other pretend iPads because it’s from Microsoft. Microsoft does not matter. Microsoft no longer has the power to sell superfluous products. The world already has iPad. The thinking world finally woke up and moved on from Microsoft’s soul-sapping dreck. That clueless Microsoft haven’t figured this out years ago (Zune, Kin, how many total face-plants do they need?) is illustrative of the depths of their delusions.

As with Zune, Kin, and Surface, Microsoft is unnecessary in today’s world. Their rapidly retiring/expiring IT Doofus firewall is the only thing keeping them around today.

And that’s not going to last much longer, either:
Gartner: By 2014, Apple will be as accepted by enterprise IT as Microsoft is today – February 4, 2013

Pierce reports, “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. It’s supposed to be freeing, but it just feels limiting.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: And this is one of the “good” reviews of this ham-handed piece of garbage with a kickstand.

As we explained quite clearly, and rather presciently, all the way back in June 2011:

Our initial impression is that Microsoft, in trying to cram everything into Windows 8 in an attempt to be all things to all devices, will end up with an OS that’s a jack of all trades and a master of none (which, after all, ought to be Microsoft’s company motto)…

We simply do not see the world clamoring for the UI of an iPod also-ran now ported to an iPhone wannabe that nobody’s buying to be blown up onto a PC display. From what we’ve seen so far, Windows 8 strikes us as an unsavory combination of Windows Weight plus Windows Wait… Not to mention that probably no one on earth knows how much or what kinds of residual legacy spaghetti code roils underneath it all (shudder)…

No matter what, if Microsoft’s going to ask Windows sufferers to “learn a whole new computer” (and that’s exactly how they’ll look at it, regardless of how Microsoft pitches it), millions will simply say, “Time to get a Mac to match my iPod, iPhone, and iPad!”

As if they needed it: More good news for Apple.

And as we explained just last month, when the ridiculous pricing scheme (starting at $1090.95 with keyboard and mouse) was announced for Microsoft’s latest debacle:

Hey look, it’s the thick, heavy, way overpriced, OS-limited “tablet” with mechanical fans and ugly vents that requires a desk (for its “kickstand”), a keyboard, and a mouse!


Obviously, smart buyers would choose an 11.6-inch MacBook Air with Parallels (if you’re still forced to slum it with Windows at times).

Bigger display, better looking, better battery life, better security (OS X, option to run crappy Windoze and Windows progams in a sandbox), access to all the world’s apps (Surface cannot run OS X or OS X apps), better, more responsive built-in keyboard, built-in “touch mouse” (Magic Trackpad), etc. – and all at a better price: starting at US$899.98. Even a 13.3-inch MacBook Air starts at only $1,099.98

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Spark” for the heads up.]

Related articles:
Microsoft’s Windows RT: Circling the bowl – February 5, 2013
Windows 8 bloat: Microsoft’s 64GB Surface Pro will offer users only 23GB of available storage space – January 29, 2013
Microsoft doesn’t reveal Surface sales, and probably never will – January 24, 2013
Microsoft blames PC makers for Windows 8 flop – January 24, 2013
Fujitsu President: Weak demand for Microsoft’s Windows 8 killing PC Sales – December 28, 2012
Philip Greenspun: Microsoft’s Windows 8 is a Christmas gift for someone you hate – December 7, 2012
MKM Partners cuts Microsoft price target, estimates on lower than expected Surface, Windows 8 sales – December 5, 2012
Why Microsoft’s Surface tablet is doomed – December 5, 2012
App developers shun Microsoft’s Surface tablet – December 4, 2012
Microsoft Surface Pro to offer only half the battery life of Apple’s latest iPad with Retina display – November 30, 2012
Microsoft’s Surface Pro iPad killer to start at $899 – November 29, 2012
Microsoft’s Surface tablet flops, orders reportedly cut in half – November 29, 2012
TechCrunch’s Siegler reviews Microsoft Surface RT: ‘It’s time for a drop test – right into the garbage can’ – November 19, 2012
Slate reviews Microsoft’s Surface tablet: Too slow, mercilessly buggy; why is it so bad? – November 6, 2012
InfoWorld reviews Microsoft Surface RT: A disappointment; you’re better off with Apple’s iPad – October 31, 2012
Gizmodo reviews Microsoft Surface RT: Do not buy; inferior to Apple’s iPad; the worst of both worlds – October 25, 2012
The Verge reviews Microsoft Surface RT tablet: ‘The whole thing is honestly perplexing; who is this for?’ – October 24, 2012
ZDNet’s Kingsley-Hughes: Microsoft’s Windows 8 is an awful, horrible, painful design disaster – June 8, 2012
Analyst meets with big computer maker, finds ‘general lack of enthusiasm’ for Windows 8 – June 8, 2012
Dvorak: Windows 8 an unmitigated disaster; unusable and annoying; it makes your teeth itch – June 3, 2012
The Guardian: Microsoft’s Windows 8 is confusing as hell; an appalling user experience – March 5, 2012
More good news for Apple: Microsoft previews Windows 8 (with video) – June 1, 2011


      1. David is now a big wheel, writing for SciAm and the Times, appearing on Charlie Rose, PBS, and CBS.

        He doesn’t have to live down his earlier Apple history—80s and 90s MacWorld columns, Macs for Dummies, etc.

        He doesn’t have to balance his praise for products that are obviously superior with nit-picking or with higher ratings for objects that properly belong in a thrift shop.

        It’s hard to figure the man acting so thin-skinned, defensive, overcompensating, emotionally needy. So what if he gets hate mail from DOS/Win/Android drones? I just wish he would snap out of it.

  1. And what did the folks at Apple say. You can’t build a tablet to do both, it doesn’t work. Apple was right, again! Stupid Anal-ists keep insisting that Apple make something like this. You can’t and expect it to work really well.

  2. Any 16:9 tablet is dead on arrival. That’s part of what separates the iPad mini from all of the other sub-10 inch tablets: not only the larger screen but just the fact that it stands alone as the only 4:3 mini tab. The only other tablet maker to get it right was Jon Rubinstein and Palm with their 7 inch HP Touchpad Go that never really saw the light of day. Everybody else keeps pushing this 16:9 junk for some reason and it’s fail fail fail.

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