Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 23rd Sep 2013 16:53 UTC

While on stage, Microsoft Vice President of Surface Panos Panay explained how the teams have worked hard in making the next generation of Surface tablets cooler, lighter, quieter, more efficient and have longer lasting power reactors. The Surface Pro 2 was up first and is all about power, with new covers and better components to further improve the user experience. If you're after the premium Surface experience, this will be the correct choice.


The Surface 2 is lighter, has a faster CPU and now sports a 1080 display with ClearType. Powering Windows RT 8.1, the Surface 2 brings new exciting features to the table, without bumping the price above the competition.

Specification bumps all around, and thinner, lighter, and changes borne from customer feedback, such as the adjustable kickstand. I like the full HD display on the Surface 2 (the ARM version of Surface), and the Haswell improvements to power and battery life on the Surface Pro 2 are substantial.

Still, as a Surface RT owner, the hardware has never been the issue. My Surface RT is a very enjoyable piece of hardware to hold - well-built, sturdy, solid, and very well designed. Specification-wise, it packs more than enough power, too. Sadly, Surface was let down by software; Windows RT and the Metro interface are simply not of decent enough quality, and the applications for it are even worse - slow, jittery animations, crash-prone, rarely updated. All the hallmarks of side projects; things developers may work on when they're not working on Android or iOS applications.

Windows 8.1 seems to have fixed little of those issues (although Surface RT owners are still waiting for the final release), and with Microsoft's notoriously slow development pace, I hardly see that change any time soon.

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Microsoft can't keep the pace of development.
by reduz on Mon 23rd Sep 2013 19:46 UTC
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I insist on this because It's so obvious, yet no one realizes it.

Microsoft develops everything in-house. Their own OS, driver model, display technologies, programming languages. Apple does to a certain point, but not as much and Google (Google reuses plenty of what is available out there for Android).

In practice, if you compare Android, iOS and WinPhone, this reflects on how much the OS improves over time and how fast. Android is the clear winner, iOS comes second and Windows Phone has barely changed in years.

I don't think Microsoft can keep the pace of developing OSs anymore, everything takes them so long and constantly release unpolished or unfinished software. Over the time they always end up in great and mature products, but they never had the competition they have now.

Whoever the new CEO will be, I hope he or she adapts more open development models, so they can reuse more of what is available (or allows others to participate).

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