Friday, January 25, 2013

Ten Enhancements to Give Surface Pro the Traction

Almost three months have passed by since Microsoft launched Surface tablet in the market. And as per the claims from the software tycoon, its enhanced version, the Surface Pro, was supposed to be released on Jan. 26, 2013. Although as per the latest news, the launch of Surface Pro is delayed a bit (Feb. 9 is now the launch date), I think it will be a good idea to see how Surface Pro is more enhanced than its junior. Oh! I forgot to add that I got a chance to look at Surface Pro at the recently ended CES 2013 at Las Vegas.

Operating System Is Pretty Fast
Should we start our walk with operating systems? As the name suggests, Surface RT has Windows RT OS that is built to run on ARM-based tablets and PCs. The OS works flawlessly with apps available in Windows store. Unfortunately Surface RT lacks the speed that we expect from modern-day tablets. The Pro in Surface Pro is nothing but Windows 8 Pro. Although the tile-based interface is very much central here as well, yet this tab can work like a regular desktop also from where you can access your older applications with ease. Usage of programs and apps available in the Windows Store is an easy task.  And obviously it is much speedier than its predecessor. 

Surface Pro has Better Productivity 
Let us now move further to the productivity part of both the devices. Windows 8 Surface RT tablet has 8 hours of battery life and arrives installed with Microsoft Office Home and Student 2013 RT. At the same time, you will find Surface Pro supporting full office experience as it runs Microsoft Outlook, Word, SharePoint Designer, PowerPoint, and more. 

A Better Choice in Application Part as Well 
Can I now take your attention to the application part in both gadgets? Well, let us first have a look at Windows RT. It includes Microsoft Office Home and Student 2013 RT Preview along with Windows Mail and Messaging services. Adding more charm are SkyDrive, Internet Explorer 10, Bing, Xbox Music, video, and games. You won’t regret selecting Surface Pro as all these applications are available in it as well. So, no worries on that part. Apart from that, Surface Pro also runs all programs that you currently run on Windows 7. That is something lovely to hear. 

No Need to Think Twice on Security
I think it is now time for me to introduce the security part of Surface Pro. Surface RT has several notable security features including device encryption to ensure that the data stored in it is intact and Windows Defender to keep an eye on online threats.  However, with Surface Pro security reaches the next level. The tablet has AppLocker and Group Policy to safeguard data inside. In addition, there is BitLocker to encrypt data in hard drive so that all your stuff is protected to the maximum.  Furthermore, Windows 8 Pro is equally compatible with third party security, management, and monitoring applications. Not to mention, the security features of Surface RT are also there. How’s that for a deal?

Connectivity is Important, Also the Battery
Always connected – as a punch line, it is music to ears. A big issue with Surface RT is that it is always connected; even while in standby mode. Of course, this ends up eating a lot of battery. Tell me frankly, haven’t you found it irritating. As if the company read your mind, Microsoft has modified this part in Surface Pro. The connectivity in this gadget goes off while hibernating, thereby preserving the battery. 

Screen Size is the Same but Resolution Is Better
Microsoft hasn't made any change to the screen size. It remains the same 10.6 inch. However the resolution in Surface Pro (1,920 x 1,080) is much better than Surface RT (1,366 x 768).  That is something I know that you love to hear.

Even the Basic Specs Are Better 
As now we have discussed the screen size, and the resolution of both Surface Pro and Surface RT, I guess it is time to move further to memory, and storage capacity of both tablets. Surface Pro has Intel Core i5 and has a storage capacity of 64 GB and a RAM of 4 GB. This is almost double than the memory and storage capacity of Surface RT. You already know that Surface RT has ARM processor, a storage capacity of 32 GB, and a memory of 2 GB. Finally, 720 mm webcam makes way for 1080 pixel camcorder.  

Minor Enhancements in Ports As Well
The stereo speakers, micro SDXC card slot, headset jack, and cover port available in Surface RT are available in Surface Pro as well. Yes, HD video out port is replaced with Mini DisplayPort and there are 2 USB 3.0 ports and 1 USB 2.0 ports in comparison to 1 full-size USB 3.0 in RT.  

And what’s This Surface Pen?
Unlike RT, Surface Pro comes with a stylus which Microsoft calls Surface Pen. The pressure sensitive device has palm-rejection technology integrated and clips magnetically to the charging port.

Extra Bling with Touch Covers
Only for a particular period, if you like to spend a bit extra, touch covers will have special laser-etched patterns. The touch covers are good to own only if you have your own keyboard and mouse. Likewise, you can add that extra bling to your Pro for $129.99. 

Finally, a Few Dampeners
The more advanced; the more expensive. As Surface Pro is advanced than Surface RT in features, it comes at a higher price tag. When a RT tab hits the stand at a tag starting at $499, Pro will reach your hand at rates starting $899. I don’t think price factor will be a distracter as Surface Pro is pretty charming, both in appearance and the features it carries.

The battery life of Surface Pro, however, is a dampener. Even Microsoft has admitted that the Core processor has reduced the battery to half. It’s a big time setback for all geeks that love MS products. 

All said and done, though the time gap between both devices is just a little over three months, Microsoft has made adequate changes in Surface Pro to make it look more appealing and advanced than its sibling. In my view Surface Pro is the real thing whereas Surface RT was just a starter. Don’t rely on my words though! Wait for the deal day to come to figure out on your own.