Talk about pure luck…a couple of weeks back I won a contest at work and received a 128GB Microsoft Surface Pro 3. I entered the contest a few months ago and completely forget I entered and was surprised to find out I was one of 3 winners. I am a tech geek and was absolutely thrilled to win one, since I was interested in getting it once funds allowed it.
I am going to give my initial impressions of it and nothing too heavily technical since you can easily find specs online. I just want to give an idea of how I feel about the device.
I will start out with the two negatives:
1) An external keyboard must be bought separately at a little over $100. Microsoft touts how the Surface will replace your traditional laptop. Not if you have to pay extra for a traditional keyboard. Mind you, the keyboard is nice and my wife surprised me with one last week, but if I had shelled out the money for the Surface then paying for a keyboard would have been much more frustrating. The keyboard must come with the Surface for it to truly replace a laptop.
2) Battery life is a little frustrating. I am hoping it is just the standard issue where it needs to be drained and recharged a few times to hold the charge better, but Microsoft states you will get around 9 hours of battery life with standard web surfing. I tried that test and within two hours of light usage the Surface lost half of its charge. We shall see if that changes in a few weeks and I will update this post if it does.
Now for the good and there is a lot of good:
1) It is fast. One thing I have always found annoying is boot up time. The Surface has almost no boot up time. I turn it completely off when I am done using it for the day and the next morning I turn it on and it is ready to go almost immediately.
2) Size and appearance is perfect. The Surface is not too big to carry around and not too small either. The screen is high resolution so everything looks great in HD. The separately bought keyboard works and looks great. The included stylus is the best yet since it truly feels like using a pen on the screen. It truly is a high end device in the way it works and the way it looks.
3) The system itself works extremely well. I have not been a big fan of Windows 8 since in my opinion it works awkwardly on laptops and even laptops with touchscreens. Clearly Windows 8 was meant for the Surface. It looks sharp and works smoothly. I have several PC games loaded already and they all play very well (one thing, they are older games so I am not sure how current high resolution games fair). I have a subscription to Microsoft O365 and it installed quickly and works perfectly.
Overall, I absolutely love my Surface. It works great, looks great, and replaces my laptop. If you want one device instead of carrying a laptop and a tablet or picking one over the other, you should purchase the Surface. Mind you, this is coming from a big Apple fan since I own a Mac, iPad, and an iPhone who always touts the superiority of Apple to PC, but with the Surface, the PC world is finally evolving and proving that the PC is not dead, just changing.