Long time iPad user and computer industry analyst Patrick Moorhead has been using Microsoft’s new Surface RT tablet for a week and says there are definitely some areas he finds it more useful for than Apple’s best-selling device.
For example, email.
“The email client is fast enough, is threaded, pulls in avatars from other services that personalizes the experience and easily handles attachments in a way that I am familiar with Windows,” says Moorhead, writing in TechPinions.
“Emails are very quick with Surface’s keyboard, too. It’s not perfect as I want a unified inbox, in-message web links, and shortcuts like ‘add to calendar’,” but he expects improvements as this is only version 1.0.
Writing, research and blogging
“On my iPad, my blog workflow today moves from iPad Evernote to WordPress on the iPad and then final edit on a PC. If you have ever worked with iOS WordPress and photos, you understand why.
"With Surface, I start with Word then publish inside the app to WordPress. One app, one device; what could be simpler?
"And it is so, so much easier with the Type Cover with a trackpad to pound out a 1,000 word piece of work. For research papers, there is no substitute for Word.”
Moorhead says iPad fans may dis Windows 8‘s Live Tiles and Android panes, but he thinks Microsoft is ahead of the curve with the tile concept and that Apple will eventually implement the concept itself.
“Without even touching the Surface display I can see emails, calendar, and weather, stocks, Tweets, breaking news, updated podcasts and about 100 other pieces of information,” says Moorhead. “I think other consumers will prefer it too, after some time, as icons are so 1980’s.”
iPad has some real competition
Moorhead concludes by noting the iPad finally has real competition. He’ll still use his iPad because it’s better at some things and “holistically, has it more together than the Surface."
“Surface is far from perfect, has its flaws, but also delivers a much better experience than expected,” says Moorhead, “and selectively delivers a preferred experience in certain usage models.”