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iPad vs Surface Pro: Which To Choose?

Tuesday, April 30th, 2013 by | Filed Under: Hardware & Peripherals
 
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Dolores from Wisconsin writes:

Pros and Cons or any information on the IPad and MS Surface as my son wishes to give me one. I am mid 80’s and only been using computer for about 20 yrs. Currently using a Wireless PC connected to my LG monitor. Have taken quite a few classes at local community college thru the years and of course, your newsletter is most helpful and informative. Have never used an Apple product.

Answer:

That is quite a hard choice to make because the Surface Pro and the Apple iPad are both very high-quality tablet devices. Both can do basic computing tasks such as browse the web, check e-mail and use a wide selection of Apps. The differences come in how they perform those tasks and what they else they can do.

Apple iPad – $499 MSRP (16GB WiFi model)

 

  • Weighs 1.4 lbs
  • Runs Apple iOS operating system
  • Downloads Apps from Apple’s App Store

The Apple iPad can be thought of as a second screen device, a device meant to supplement, not replace your computer. The benefits of the iPad are the amazing battery life (over 10 hours of active use), simple proven interface design of iOS operating system and the Apple App Store, which contains hundreds of thousands of applications designed to work on iOS devices. The negatives are the limited expandability (there are no USB ports and you can not upgrade or expand the memory), the walled-in App store where only Apple approved applications can be sold, and the lack of a full desktop operating system.

Microsoft Surface Pro $899 MSRP (64 GB WiFi Model)

  • Weighs 2 LB
  • Runs Windows 8 Pro operating system
  • Downloads Apps from Microsoft Store & others

The Surface Pro is more of a replacement computer that also functions as a second screen device. The benefits of the Surface Pro are the full Windows 8 Pro operating system, which lets you install not only tablet-optimized apps from Microsoft Store but nearly every Windows 7 compatible program. The expansion ports (USB 3.0, micro SDHC card slot, display port connector) allow the device to be expanded and used as a desktop replacement. The negatives include a shorter battery life, in practical testing about 5 hours of web/video and heavier/bulkier build than the iPad so less comfortable to handhold.

Which should you buy?

This comes down to if you want a tablet that does a few things your computer can do or a computer that does most of the things a tablet can do. I primarily use my laptop and needed a tablet to browse the web, play games and read e-mail on the couch and in bed so I choose the iPad. For my girlfriend, who was looking for a tablet to use in school and to do assignments, I purchased a Surface Pro.

-Tim

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6 Responses to “iPad vs Surface Pro: Which To Choose?”

  1. Nola says:

    I purchased a MS Surface a couple of months ago and was wondering if I had made the right decision. After reading this article I am now very please with my decision because I was looking to replace my laptop and when I spoke with many salespeople in tryin to decide which to purchase the salespeople were not of much help execpt to say that I needed to make my own mind up and that it basically boiled down to which “brand” I prefered. Thank you for your newsletters. I find them very helpful.

  2. k koons says:

    Excellent summary – thanks. This helps with decision making.

  3. Margy says:

    Very helpful – thanks

  4. Starr says:

    This is a very good comparison summary. Thanks.

  5. Paul says:

    Ipad does not require antivirus but Windows does.

  6. Darrel says:

    Great topic and good info. I am going to add my personal experience. If you are happy with your laptop and you have WI-FI at the house, may I suggust an Android tablet. I myself got the Asus and I love it! Tons of apps ( you are not limited to only one store) Quad core,nvidia graphics,plus you can get the seperate key board and it has a extended battery. Did I mention tons of games. If you want something for entertainment and to explore the open source of Android it’s the way to go. Go to a couple of electronics stores and play with them. Don’t get stuck in the limited mindset of these other operating systems. Good luck with your choice and have fun !!

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