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Old Nov 5, 2012, 03:04 PM   #1
smoledman
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Why the Surface is a terrible tablet right now and forever.

#1 Ergonomics - There is a reason the iPad is 4:3. It makes the tablet easy to hold in either orientation. Plus it makes viewing in portrait mode not look silly. There are a ****-ton of portrait-mode only apps in iOS that are fantastic. Also viewing web sites in portrait is the way to go. You can rail on about black bars on video, but people have been putting up with that on televisions for ages, so what?

#2 Storage - The Surface RT comes with only 16GB free on 1st use. This is from Microsoft's own website. By contrast with a 16GB iPad, you get 13.5 GB free on 1st use. That's horrific code bloat. Apologists say just plug in an SDXC card. First of all, if you have to plug in an SD card to make up for code bloat you blew it. Second, you can't install apps on the SD card, only content. Third, to even point XBox Music at the SD card as a "library" requires a horrific hack. Microsoft blew it all the way around here.

#3 Screen - ClearType blah blah blah. Maybe video looks ok, but 80% of blind tests showed people could detect the pixels on text and could not on an iPad 3. The screen is not bad, but people expect the retina display now.

#4 Apps -If you're in the market for a tablet, do you go with the iPad which has 275K apps on Day 1(1000s of truly great ones) or Surface RT that has 10K(only a handful of great ones). 275K > 10K on any day of the week!

#5 Accessories - Then the iPad has a universe of accessories(cases, covers, wireless keyboards). The Surface has just a few that Microsoft sells you at a huge premium.

#6 Backup & Restore - We all know how easy it is to backup all your app settings, email, music, videos, contacts to the iCloud and restore if need be. There is no such easy option for the Surface. As far as I know all that gets backed up to SkyDrive is your app settings & contacts. Another "Microsoft blew it".

I could go on all day about how the iPad is superior to the Surface in every which way, but it would fall on deaf ears. Let's say there are a 1000 use cases for a tablet. There are only 2 I can think of the Surface being superior at compared to an iPad. Watching widescreen video & composing Office documents.

998 > 2.

Also we know the Surface will never become 4:3, so even if all the other things improve it will always remain an ergonomic nightmare.
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Old Nov 5, 2012, 03:11 PM   #2
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#2 makes no sense
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Old Nov 5, 2012, 03:13 PM   #3
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#2 makes no sense
What makes no sense. With a 32GB Surface RT you only get 16GB free on initial use. With the 32GB iPad, you get 28GB free. That's all due to code bloat!
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Old Nov 5, 2012, 03:34 PM   #4
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What makes no sense. With a 32GB Surface RT you only get 16GB free on initial use.
Statements make no sense when key details are left out.

#3 "people expect the retina display now"--which is why no one is going to buy the iPad mini.

#4 People made the same argument when Android first appeared. (and for how many years did Apple users have to listen to "Windows has more apps"?)

#7 the history of commercial computing makes it clear that people buy what they want and rationalize it afterwards with long lists of "reasons"; technical advantages hardly enter into it.
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Old Nov 5, 2012, 03:40 PM   #5
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Statements make no sense when key details are left out.

#3 "people expect the retina display now"--which is why no one is going to buy the iPad mini.

#4 People made the same argument when Android first appeared.

#7 the history of commercial computing makes it clear that people buy what they want and rationalize it afterwards with long lists of "reasons"; technical advantages hardly enter into it.
Apple announced the sold 3 million iPad Minis in the first weekend. Except with regards to rationalizations, none are needed with Apple products. They just work, have a universe of accessories and unparalleled support.

Yet another example of the endless iOS accessories:

http://www.cultofmac.com/199676/unmo...-from-finland/

You will never ever see top accessory OEMs making this kind of thing for Windows!
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Old Nov 5, 2012, 04:34 PM   #6
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Microsoft Surface Review (with Windows RT)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gQhh...layer_embedded
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Old Nov 5, 2012, 04:36 PM   #7
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Apple announced the sold 3 million iPad Minis in the first weekend.
Thereby contradicting your point.
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Old Nov 5, 2012, 05:51 PM   #8
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[QUOTE=smoledman;16233819]Apple announced the sold 3 million iPad Minis in the first weekend.[/QOUTE]

Actually, I believe that Apple sold 3 million iPad Minis and iPad 4 collectively. The last thing I read didn't indicate how many were Minis and how many were iPad 4s.

Perhaps I missed some information somewhere, but I don't think they indicated how many of the 3 million were Minis.
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Old Nov 5, 2012, 03:37 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by smoledman View Post
What makes no sense. With a 32GB Surface RT you only get 16GB free on initial use. With the 32GB iPad, you get 28GB free. That's all due to code bloat!

#2 Storage - The Surface RT comes with only 16GB free on 1st use. This is from Microsoft's own website. By contrast with a 16GB iPad, you get 13.5 GB free on 1st use. That's horrific code bloat. Apologists say just plug in an SDXC card. First of all, if you have to plug in an SD card to make up for code bloat you blew it. Second, you can't install apps on the SD card, only content. Third, to even point XBox Music at the SD card as a "library" requires a horrific hack. Microsoft blew it all the way around here.
And you've used 16gb as an example not 32. If your going to pass comment make sure you put the details for people to see
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Old Nov 12, 2012, 10:45 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by smoledman View Post
What makes no sense. With a 32GB Surface RT you only get 16GB free on initial use. With the 32GB iPad, you get 28GB free. That's all due to code bloat!
32GB Surface costs exactly as much as a 16GB iPad.
I've easily freed up about 7GB deleting the pre-bundled apps.
None-issue methinks. Users are not going to be screaming for extra space. Not since you get more for exactly the same price anyway, regardless of whether some optional bundled Apps takes up a fair bit of room.

Quite like my Surface. Windows RT is much smoother than iOS has ever been to me. Now lets get them developers developing Apps for it. If a larger collection of Apps for it is built, WinRT + Win 8 tablets will fly.
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Old Nov 12, 2012, 10:52 AM   #11
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The Surface Pro is going to kill it in the enterprise. With full Windows 8 / Outlook / legacy app support, docking stations that turn it into a full-fledged desktop, and remote IT administration... IT departments will flock to these when replacing computers in the workplace.
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Old Nov 12, 2012, 11:03 AM   #12
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The Surface Pro is going to kill it in the enterprise. With full Windows 8 / Outlook / legacy app support, docking stations that turn it into a full-fledged desktop, and remote IT administration... IT departments will flock to these when replacing computers in the workplace.
This. is exactly what I'm hearing, too. It doesn't need a genius to see these benefits and wait...it even has an USB port? Must be some fanzy futuristic tablet.
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Old Nov 13, 2012, 08:54 AM   #13
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The Surface Pro is going to kill it in the enterprise. With full Windows 8 / Outlook / legacy app support, docking stations that turn it into a full-fledged desktop, and remote IT administration... IT departments will flock to these when replacing computers in the workplace.
Yeah, you should start holding your breath now!

I find it unbelievable the degree to which people who ostensibly have no dog in the tablet fight are singing the praises of a device that doesn't exist yet! Those of us reading those posts can be forgiven for suspecting that some of these early posts are simply "pie in the sky" wishful thinking.

I know that there are unmet needs in the Enterprise space, otherwise there wouldn't be people clamoring for a tablet that is the best of both worlds. However, the success of the Surface Pro will be limited to Enterprise, it seems to me. Is there enough unfulfilled demand within Enterprise to not only make it a success both now, and 2-3 years down the line?

That depends on Microsoft and the market.
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Old Nov 12, 2012, 11:03 AM   #14
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I've easily freed up about 7GB deleting the pre-bundled apps.
Based on the numbers earlier in this thread, I think you are exaggerating here.

Quote:
None-issue methinks. Users are not going to be screaming for extra space. Not since you get more for exactly the same price anyway, regardless of whether some optional bundled Apps takes up a fair bit of room.
They would be screaming if it was an Apple device! Heck we had people complaining in this forum about the minuscule amount of space that iOS takes up.

Seriously, it's not a problem as long as consumers are informed. All these comparison charts that compare various tablets should have an asterisk by the Surface built in storage.
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Old Nov 5, 2012, 09:02 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by DJTaurus View Post
Microsoft Surface Review (with Windows RT)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gQhh...layer_embedded
I highly recommend everyone watch this. I entertained the idea of buying one of these until I saw both the unboxing and this video.

Quote:
Originally Posted by smoledman View Post
#1 Ergonomics - There is a reason the iPad is 4:3. It makes the tablet easy to hold in either orientation. Plus it makes viewing in portrait mode not look silly. There are a ****-ton of portrait-mode only apps in iOS that are fantastic. Also viewing web sites in portrait is the way to go. You can rail on about black bars on video, but people have been putting up with that on televisions for ages, so what?

#2 Storage - The Surface RT comes with only 16GB free on 1st use. This is from Microsoft's own website. By contrast with a 16GB iPad, you get 13.5 GB free on 1st use. That's horrific code bloat. Apologists say just plug in an SDXC card. First of all, if you have to plug in an SD card to make up for code bloat you blew it. Second, you can't install apps on the SD card, only content. Third, to even point XBox Music at the SD card as a "library" requires a horrific hack. Microsoft blew it all the way around here.

#3 Screen - ClearType blah blah blah. Maybe video looks ok, but 80% of blind tests showed people could detect the pixels on text and could not on an iPad 3. The screen is not bad, but people expect the retina display now.

#4 Apps -If you're in the market for a tablet, do you go with the iPad which has 275K apps on Day 1(1000s of truly great ones) or Surface RT that has 10K(only a handful of great ones). 275K > 10K on any day of the week!

#5 Accessories - Then the iPad has a universe of accessories(cases, covers, wireless keyboards). The Surface has just a few that Microsoft sells you at a huge premium.

#6 Backup & Restore - We all know how easy it is to backup all your app settings, email, music, videos, contacts to the iCloud and restore if need be. There is no such easy option for the Surface. As far as I know all that gets backed up to SkyDrive is your app settings & contacts. Another "Microsoft blew it".

I could go on all day about how the iPad is superior to the Surface in every which way, but it would fall on deaf ears. Let's say there are a 1000 use cases for a tablet. There are only 2 I can think of the Surface being superior at compared to an iPad. Watching widescreen video & composing Office documents.

998 > 2.

Also we know the Surface will never become 4:3, so even if all the other things improve it will always remain an ergonomic nightmare.
1. Aspect ratio is not exactly a big deal as long as the software content easily supports the display effectively. People aren't going to be holding this thing in portrait mode, ever. I'd guess Microsoft just added it to avoid people laughing up a storm because it wasn't available.

2. I can't agree more here. Microsoft should really work on creating an OS that doesn't hog so much space.

3. Not all video looks okay. Have you seen the Surface try to render a video in flash? Pixel density is something people have become far too obsessed with. I think it's important to have a clean screen, but there's no point to be anal about it. Case in point is the complaints going around about the iPad mini, despite it actually topping the iPad 2 (due to pixel counts being compressed on such a small screen).

4. 10 grand worth of apps is nothing to underestimate. Obviously the market has been around for awhile and Microsoft has some catching up to do, but it's true that the application ecosystem still offers the essentials that most people use and need. This may be the fate of the Surface even if bugs and performance issues are worked out, take a look at what happened to the BB Playbook.

5. The new style charger for the most recent iProducts is a drawback, so let's not forget how Apple has treated third party support here. Your overall point remains true though, Apple has been on the market for a long time and has a lot of support in that regard.

6. I agree here.

Anyways, Microsoft didn't make money for the first 4-5 years of production of the XBOX. They just used their money reserves to keep pumping money into the system until it started to become profitable. I suspect they have the coffers to do the same thing here. They will likely keep funding the device for generations to come even if it remains a failing device in terms of the App ecosystem. I suspect the first revision of most products is going to be the worst, so we'll give Microsoft some time to fine-tune their device in order to solve performance issues. I do not underestimate Microsoft and their ability to make a product successful even if it isn't at first. We'll see what happens, but let's not become fortune tellers here. That's just silly.
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Old Nov 6, 2012, 12:58 PM   #16
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Why the Pro version of the Surface is a game changer

There are 3 tablet markets right now
1 - Premium market, dominated by the iPad
2 - Budget market, dominated by the Kindle, Nexus, and Nook
3 - Midrange market, which Apple is trying to create with the iPad Mini

The Surface Pro creates a 4th market that we can call Ultra Premium, higher end than anything that's currently in the tablet market. x86 CPU, 4 Gig RAM, full desktop OS and desktop sw compatibility

Why is that market needed?

Because there are a lot of power users out there who want the form factor of a tablet but also want to do things other than browse the web, watch movies, and play Angry Birds. They'd like streamlined enterprise integration plus the ability to run pro level software like Photoshop, MS Office, etc. You're never gonna get pro level apps on iOS/Android devices because they're budget markets.

If MS gets the functionality part of the Pro version right, it'll make the iPad look like an $500 toy
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Old Nov 6, 2012, 01:38 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by Liquorpuki View Post
Why the Pro version of the Surface is a game changer

There are 3 tablet markets right now
1 - Premium market, dominated by the iPad
2 - Budget market, dominated by the Kindle, Nexus, and Nook
3 - Midrange market, which Apple is trying to create with the iPad Mini

The Surface Pro creates a 4th market that we can call Ultra Premium, higher end than anything that's currently in the tablet market. x86 CPU, 4 Gig RAM, full desktop OS and desktop sw compatibility

Why is that market needed?

Because there are a lot of power users out there who want the form factor of a tablet but also want to do things other than browse the web, watch movies, and play Angry Birds. They'd like streamlined enterprise integration plus the ability to run pro level software like Photoshop, MS Office, etc. You're never gonna get pro level apps on iOS/Android devices because they're budget markets.

If MS gets the functionality part of the Pro version right, it'll make the iPad look like an $500 toy
B.S. The iPad is a full computing device.
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Old Nov 6, 2012, 01:49 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by smoledman View Post
B.S. The iPad is a full computing device.
Define full computing device

And what part of what I said do you think is BS?
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Old Nov 6, 2012, 04:29 PM   #19
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Microsoft already tried Ultra Premium years ago and it failed. The Tablet PC didn't take off, and I don't think the Surface will either. I guarantee you that the Surface Pro will just be another machine that people leave behind at work, just like the DELL and Toshiba laptops I see my dad bring home all the time.

The real problem I see though is that Microsoft is trying to capture the younger crowd with the colorful keyboards and touchscreen. Obviously, the machine costs $500, and the keyboard $120. That is about the cost of a mid-range traditional laptop with a large hard drive and better specs. No parent is going to buy their kid that when there are much cheaper options like the iPad Mini/Kindle Fire HD 8.9" and a Bluetooth keyboard. They don't care about the apps, they just want something for their kid to be able to take notes, write papers on, and read their textbooks.

Windows 8 is going to do well as long as its being used in laptops, and something like being able to choose between Windows XP and Vista doesn't come up again, however the Surface won't be a long lasting product line unless they bundle the keyboards and lower the price by at least $100. Make the money off screen/keyboard replacements and content and focus on gaining the marketshare.

For someone that just wants a portable internet device, it's also just too much money and specs. We want to think that tablets can be our only machine, but in reality, 99% of current iPad users have a main desktop/laptop they use in addition to it.
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Old Nov 6, 2012, 05:50 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by Jessica Lares View Post
Microsoft already tried Ultra Premium years ago and it failed. The Tablet PC didn't take off, and I don't think the Surface will either. I guarantee you that the Surface Pro will just be another machine that people leave behind at work, just like the DELL and Toshiba laptops I see my dad bring home all the time.
Difference is back then, the tablet PC was a laptop with a resistive touch screen. The OS used on Tablet PC's was basically XP with a tacked on touch UI, not an OS that was designed from the ground up with touch in mind. More importantly, there was no real tablet market back then. Totally different product and environment back then.

Quote:
The real problem I see though is that Microsoft is trying to capture the younger crowd with the colorful keyboards and touchscreen. Obviously, the machine costs $500, and the keyboard $120. That is about the cost of a mid-range traditional laptop with a large hard drive and better specs. No parent is going to buy their kid that when there are much cheaper options like the iPad Mini/Kindle Fire HD 8.9" and a Bluetooth keyboard. They don't care about the apps, they just want something for their kid to be able to take notes, write papers on, and read their textbooks.
Without piggybacking off Windows 8 popularity or the Pro's success, the Surface RT will probably be another iPad competitor that fails to gain significant marketshare. And that has more to do with branding than price.

But the Pro version isn't geared toward kids, and isn't trying to compete directly with the iPad or any existing tablet. It's trying to create a new high end market, which I think there's a need for. I've left my iPad 1 in the trunk of my car for the past 2 months because the most I use it for is as an e-reader or browsing the web. Give me a slate form factor device I can use to create Office documents, edit CAD drawings, and program on and I'll buy it. There's nothing on the market that can do that to a capable degree right now.

The biggest criticism I have of Apple is as good as their OS and hardware is, they don't pay enough attention to software. They've made it so the app store is the only way you can install software on your mobile device. So you have a ton of apps for sale, but only one store, and the commoditization has driven down prices/profit and turned mobile software into a budget market. Because it's a budget market, no one's creating power apps. Because there are no power apps, people still need their laptops to do the more complicated stuff.

Ignoring upcoming hybrids like the Transformer Book, the Pro is the only tablet that will be able to do power apps, because it has the same tech as a midrange laptop (Core i5, 4g ram, HD Graphics 4000) and breaks the app store tradition by letting you install desktop software on it. I'm not guaranteeing MS will succeed but if you're someone who wants the tablet to be more than just a portable internet device, you'll probably be watching how the Pro does in 2013
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Old Nov 6, 2012, 05:51 PM   #21
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Microsoft already tried Ultra Premium years ago and it failed. The Tablet PC didn't take off, and I don't think the Surface will either.
You could argue that the reason tablet PCs failed in the past wasn't because people didn't want them, rather they didn't want them as they were presented due to the technology of the time. Those old tablets were massive, fat bastards. Some of the larger ones were 2 inches thick, nearly 6-7 pounds, and lasted an hour and a half on a charge. That isn't something you'd want to hold in one hand or take out with you.

But now? We've got the RT which is a pound and a half and incredibly thin, and last about 9 hours before you have to recharge it. The Pro is only marginally larger and heavier (battery life is still a mystery though). They're much better tablets than the old tablet PCs were, and are likely to have more appeal because of that.

We'll see how much soon enough.
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Old Nov 12, 2012, 05:03 PM   #22
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B.S. The iPad is a full computing device.
Yeah except it doesn't have a file system..which makes it a half computing device.

The switch between the desktop/tablet interface is just terribly designed. The RT should be in a tablet interface all the time and the desktop computer should be in the desktop interface all the time. I don't understand why Microsoft thought running hybrid between the two was a home run.

I also think they would have been better off releasing the 'Pro' version first, people would have had a dip into the tablet world of microsoft while still retaining app compatibility.

Last edited by iEvolution; Nov 12, 2012 at 05:09 PM.
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Old Nov 11, 2012, 07:38 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by Liquorpuki View Post
Why the Pro version of the Surface is a game changer

There are 3 tablet markets right now
1 - Premium market, dominated by the iPad
2 - Budget market, dominated by the Kindle, Nexus, and Nook
3 - Midrange market, which Apple is trying to create with the iPad Mini

The Surface Pro creates a 4th market that we can call Ultra Premium, higher end than anything that's currently in the tablet market. x86 CPU, 4 Gig RAM, full desktop OS and desktop sw compatibility

Why is that market needed?

Because there are a lot of power users out there who want the form factor of a tablet but also want to do things other than browse the web, watch movies, and play Angry Birds. They'd like streamlined enterprise integration plus the ability to run pro level software like Photoshop, MS Office, etc. You're never gonna get pro level apps on iOS/Android devices because they're budget markets.

If MS gets the functionality part of the Pro version right, it'll make the iPad look like an $500 toy
THIS..

Plus with the Surface Pro you can eliminate the need for a laptop AND a tablet and consolidate your experience to one device. You will be able to use the Surface Pro as a fully feature laptop for ultimate productivity or as a Tablet for extreme mobility and multimedia. All for a price somewhere in between the cost of buying 2 devices(a laptop & tablet).

Microsoft is betting device consolidation will be the future direction. Only time will tell if it will pay off.
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Old Nov 11, 2012, 07:46 PM   #24
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I had the Microsoft surface RT for about a week. I really did love it, and thought it was an awesome little tablet. The deal breaker for me was that it did not support the security requirements for my company's Microsoft email exchange server. I filed a ticket, read up on forums and nothing worked. I finally returned it today.

I was really looking forward to breaking away from this walled garden, but I guess the surface won't be the way out for now.
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Old Nov 11, 2012, 08:49 PM   #25
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I had the Microsoft surface RT for about a week. I really did love it, and thought it was an awesome little tablet. The deal breaker for me was that it did not support the security requirements for my company's Microsoft email exchange server. I filed a ticket, read up on forums and nothing worked. I finally returned it today.

I was really looking forward to breaking away from this walled garden, but I guess the surface won't be the way out for now.
Im sorry to hear that.

The Surface pro WILL be a way out of the walled garden though.
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