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Is the Microsoft Surface RT really cool, or a dud? Well, that depends!

Opinions are like . . . well, you know. Everyone has one.

Here’s mine: the Surface RT is an inexpensive device that, limited as it is, can do nearly everything I need to do with a laptop.

Think about that – everything Don Ferguson needs to do. I do *everything* on my computers. And the Surface RT can do most of it. More of it than my iPad Mini can do.

Here’s what we tell people: The Surface RT is not a “real” Windows computer. It’s got the same processor type as the iPad. So it’s a tablet. But it has the best cover/keyboard I’ve ever seen, and it looks like Windows, mostly functions like Windows, and comes with a full version of Microsoft Office 2013 installed for “free”.

What you can’t do: install stuff. Most stuff. Any apps in the Microsoft Store, you can install. Anything else, you can’t. Just like the iPad. Granted the Apple App Store is much larger than the Microsoft Store, but this only matters if something you need to use on your tablet isn’t available. There isn’t a version of the Surface that has a 4G (Verizon, AT&T, etc.) radio in it, like my iPad Mini does, so if I want to connect, it has to be wifi.

Just like the iPad, the Surface RT can’t completely replace your computer. But if you’re looking for a light, mobile device that does most of it, the RT is really pretty powerful!

I have 4 computers that I use regularly, so I don’t need the Surface RT to do everything. What I can’t do on the RT: connect to a wired Ethernet network, remote control clients’ computers well, install our Interconnected Technologies Egnyte syncing software. Um, um, um, probably some other small stuff that doesn’t come to mind now. See? It’s pretty darned full function, even for me.

For gaming: forget it. Get a “real” computer. Unless the game you want is in the Microsoft Store. Or get the Surface Pro, which is a real computer in the same form factor but a little thicker. If you are thinking about having this as your only computer: forget it. If you need to run Photoshop, or some other real computer program, forget it! I do all these things on other computers.

The Surface RT can do: All of Microsoft Office: Word, Excel, Powerpoint, Outlook, OneNote, and so on. It’s all there, preloaded and included. Skype for video calls. Evernote, Skydrive, Netflix, iHeartRadio, Adobe Reader. It plays music, shows pictures. Lots of other stuff. Like a tablet. Or a laptop. Or something in-between.

Some advertising comparisons:

Commercial 1


Commercial 2


One nay sayer:


A more balanced review:


And, as always, the choice of devices like this is a complex and personal one – one with which Interconnected Technologies can help!

References (3)

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