Okay, so it seems my predictions about Microsoft’s new tablet on the basis of the leaked document were far away from what Microsoft unveiled. Since the document talked of a 7-inch tablet and the released tab is a 10-incher – my predictions still stand a chance.
Let’s ignore my predictions for a minute and jump to what Microsoft unveiled at the press event that happened in Los Angeles.
Before the leaked document came into the picture, the tech community was expecting Microsoft to come up with a Windows 8 tablet; the so-called iPad killer, and the company did just that. Microsoft announced two tablets under the Surface branding – Surface for Windows RT and Surface for Windows 8.
What’s a Surface?
Surface is the name of the tablet that has been specially optimized to support a single version of Windows; just like Samsung Google Nexus (Android v2.3 Gingerbread) and Samsung Galaxy Nexus (Android v4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich).
By the looks of Surface for Windows RT, it seems Microsoft has spent a lot of time thinking what exactly people need from a tablet; attachable full multi-touch keyboard and track-pad is seriously – very impressive; it’s thin, doesn’t make the tablet bulky, doubles up as a protection cover and comes in several colors. People need a physical keyboard for ‘at least trying to do some serious work;’ that’s the reason why ASUS’ Transformer line-up is getting such great reviews from users.
Surface for Windows RT has 10.6-inch optically bonded HD display; ARM-based CPU manufactured by NVIDIA, twin 2×2 MIMO antennas for Wi-Fi connectivity, and one each HDMI, microSD and USB 2.0 port. All this awesomeness would come fitted inside an all-magnesium VaporMG casing that measures 9.3mm in thickness and weighs 1.3 pounds. According to Microsoft, this device would be priced competitively w.r.t. other ARM-based tablets and you would have to wait till October to grab one.
On the other hand, Surface for Windows 8 Pro is an Intel-based performer; with an Ivy Bridget Core i5 processor, USB 3.0 ports, and 64 GB/128 GB storage options it certainly challenges current Ultrabooks. It offers full HD 1080p resolution from the same 10.6-inch Gorilla Glass 2 display, measures 13.5mm in thickness and weighs nearly 2 pounds. The device also comes with a pen stylus with “Palm Block.” As for the pricing, Surface for Windows 8 Pro would priced around currently available Ultrabooks (approx. $799).
Whenever a company launches a tablet computer that is not designed for education (it isn’t cheap), the world starts comparing it with the iPad because even though tablets existed before the arrival of iPad; it wouldn’t be wrong if I’d say that Apple is the pioneer of the tablet industry. What Microsoft is doing right now i.e. making hardware for its software is something that Apple did a long time ago with its first iPhone – so people who are claiming that Microsoft is copying Apple have a point.