The Microsoft ‘Surface’ Tablet was announced last night at a surprise event in Hollywood, California. No, you didn’t read that incorrectly; Microsoft is actually manufacturing its first device to go along with Windows 8, its upcoming series of operating systems.
Microsoft gave this tablet some key features to set it apart from the much beloved iPad to hopefully avoid an embarrassing failure….like every other tablet who has done the walk of shame from the tablet market in last night’s makeup, stilettos, and mini dress. So in order to evade social suicide, Microsoft needs to execute a campaign so that the product doesn’t end up unwanted and collecting dust in warehouses. They plan to position it as a tablet with PC-like capabilities for stronger computing, two full USB ports, microSD slots and a stylus on the Pro version, and for the fun part—a magnetic keyboard cover case. This case isn’t like Apple’s magnetic case however, and not only because it’s included with the tablet, but because it is actually USEFUL. What a novel idea. The magnetic case attached to the Surface tablet will work as a keyboard with built in track pad that activates when opened. Efficiency is #1, and I don’t think I know anyone that would turn down a physical keyboard for an imaginary one. Not to mention the colors available are pretty sweet. However, no price or release date information has been revealed.
A few other boring tech specs from Mashable.com: the Surface with Windows RT will be available in 32GB and 64GB sizes, while the Pro version running Windows 8 will have 64GB and 128 GB sizes—which is actually really impressive.
What do I predict will happen? I think this is a great way to position a tablet, and I obviously love the included keyboard cover, but Microsoft needs to be smart enough to competitively price this device if it’s going to survive. I know it’s not enough to get me to break up with my iPad, so I have to assume the same goes for everyone else who has already entered into a monogamous relationship with Apple. So anyone who has been holding out on buying a tablet might want to consider the “Surface” because it will come equipped with Windows 8, and from what I hear, will feature a special version of Microsoft Office which is something I definitely wish I had on my tablet. I think it has major potential to compete and survive, but I don’t think it will ever reign supreme over the iPad. But thanks for trying, Bill Gates. Maybe next time.
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