Opinion

Microsoft’s Surface to hit the tablet market

By KELVIN DAVIS Kelvin Davis is the director of Greymouse, a cloud service-provider that supplies high quality, time-bound and cost-efficient services through its own facility in Fiji. Microsoft’s first tablet
22 Oct 2012 10:13

By KELVIN DAVIS

Kelvin Davis is the director of Greymouse, a cloud service-provider that supplies high quality, time-bound and cost-efficient services through its own facility in Fiji.

Microsoft’s first tablet computer called the ‘Surface’ will be on sale from October 26, starting at AU$559 (FJD $1016.36).
The price matches Apples’ iPad, the most popular tablet computer.
For a software giant like Microsoft, this sudden move into retail hardware is an unusual one.
Traditionally, Microsoft is known as a supplier to the hardware industry for major manufactures like Dell, IBM and HP.
Microsoft has now established itself as a competitor in the hardware and software industry, a move that will certainly raise some eyebrows.
This Surface tablet has definitely stamped its mark in the industry with its high standards and raised expectations from its partners.
Along with the debut of Microsoft’s Surface, is the release of its long awaited Windows 8 operating system that is commonly known for its live ‘Tiles’ on the desktop.
The Surface’s key differences include,
•  32 GB storage (twice the entry level iPad)
•  Larger screen
•  Cover with built in keyboard
The biggest difference is that these extra keyboards are built in to the screen covers.  Two options are available”
1.  The ‘Touch Cover’ has a working printed keyboard on the inside of the screen cover. When pressed, these ‘keys’ do not move, instead it’s more like touching a printed keyboard. This keyboard cover costs another AU$120 (FJD $218).
2.  A separate ‘Type Cover’ with keys that move when pushed costs AU$149.99 (FJD $272.71)

Keyboard benefit
A major drawback of the iPad and normal tablets are the limited functionality when editing large word documents or graphic files.
Simply put, the existing tables are not built for this purpose, so I revert back to my trusty old laptop when editing large files.
Now the Surface becomes a small touch screen monitor, with a stand, keyboard and mouse add on.
Suddenly the traditional laptop or notebook computer market has a serious small computer competitor.

Office Apps
The first Surface includes a student version of the Microsoft Office suite (Word, Excel and Outlook). The full version will be provided on a ‘free basis’ through a windows update. (when it is released)
A negative side is that this Surface is not running an Intel based processor therefore it will not run traditional PC programs.
The Intel-style PC processor version of the Surface will be released later in the year.  (No price available)

Specifications
Some of its specifications consist of:
•  32 GB and 64 GB RAM options
•  680 grams
•  USB 2.0
•  3.5 mm headphone jack
•  HD Video out
•  Wi-Fi
•  Bluetooth
•  Expansion slot
•  720p HD front and rear cameras
•  10.6 inch screen
•  Nvidia T30 Processor
•  Up to eight hours battery life
For more information regarding Microsoft specification visit:
http://tinyurl.com/surface-specsheet
The Surface is Cloud ready, designed to use all your cloud based applications with live feed to your Tiles.
Surface Cloud apps include:
•  Mail
•  Calendar
•  Photos
•  Skydrive
•  Messaging
•  Defender
Using Microsoft on line store you can get more applications available at www.microsoftstore.com




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