#1 Edited by UnlimitedSheep (33 posts) -

I'm hoping someone somewhere can give me advice about tablets. I'm considering purchasing one, but I know absolutely nothing about them. I've mostly been looking at the Microsoft Surface Pro 2, because I would love to be able to use Word and Powerpoint and have a keyboard, but I don't really know what or how to compare tablets. There seems to be a huge amount, and I'm not at all clear on the capabilities and functions of them all.

Basically, my needs are the ability to show a digital copy of an art portfolio (so the screen needs to be pretty sharp), blogging or website editing (if that's even a thing that can be done on a tablet?), and the ability to access and reply to emails and other social networking stuff (like facebook and twitter). I'd like to be able to store documents and things either on the tablet or be able to use a flash drive with it if possible.

As I approach the end of school and the beginning of a freelance career, I need to build a major online presence and be able to market myself anywhere I go, which is where I hope a tablet will help. But...honestly, I'm a few hundred years behind in the technology department and am way out of touch with what stuff can do these days.

So I guess my question is: based on my needs, is the Surface Pro the way to go, or are there other (hopefully cheaper) options out there?

Thanks for the help!

#2 Posted by dungbootle (2454 posts) -
#3 Posted by RonGalaxy (2840 posts) -

Honestly, an ultra book/macbook would probably suit your needs the best. I don't think website editing/building is even possible on any tablets. And if you're going to be lugging around a keyboard the extra size shouldn't be a worry.

#4 Edited by UnlimitedSheep (33 posts) -

@naru_joe93: Yeah, I kind of thought the website stuff would be a stretch. I'll check out the ultrabook though, if that has all the functions I need at a cheaper price, I'm all for it!

@dungbootle: Wow, that site has a ton of info. It's a huge help, thanks!

#5 Posted by dungbootle (2454 posts) -
#6 Posted by SSully (4118 posts) -

From the sounds of your needs a surface pro 2 might be up your ally. It does everything a tablet does, but has the ability of a regular computer(can run any windows applications).

The biggest downside to windows 8 devices is the app stores fucking sucks. This doesn't hurt the surface pro 2 really since it can run any windows application, but its still worth mentioning.

#7 Posted by UnlimitedSheep (33 posts) -

@ssully: I think the surface pro 2 is still the way I'm leaning. I'm not too concerned about apps, since I've never owned a device that used apps so I honestly don't know what I'd want them for. I tried to look on the microsoft site to see what kinds of apps there are, and nothing looked like anything I'd use. Thanks everyone for the responses, I was just worried that I would miss something super obvious due to my absolute ignorance of tablets!

#8 Posted by Butano (1728 posts) -

@unlimitedsheep: I have the first Surface Pro, and I'd equate it more as an Ultrabook that happens to have a tablet form factor. Not exactly as light as the iPad or Android tablets, but it's definitely a capable Windows machine. It definitely isn't bed-friendly, but I can type and do laptop work with it on my lap just fine, contrary to what the reviewers of the device will tell you. The only 'apps' I use on it are Netflix and the excellent (and free) FreshPaint app. Everything else is just a normal Windows program, like Visual Studios, VMware, Steam, etc. (it's an excellent Civ V on-the-go machine)

And the stylus is fantastic if you plan to do any drawing or notetaking with it. I use it mainly for OneNote for classes and have it synced with my Skydrive account so that I can bring it up in any web browser. Very crisp screen. I use the Type Cover 1 on it currently, but I'll probably upgrade to the Power Cover when it releases. I usually go about 5 hours before I have to charge it. I'd like to get the new docking station for it, but I actually have one I ordered from Amazon I got around last April that uses the USB 3.0 port for displaying out to a second monitor as well as add a few more USB ports for other things I might need. My only beef with it is that I wish it had more storage than 128GB, but the Surface Pro 2 has the option for 256GB at least though it's just a tad bit much for that bump in my opinion.

PS: This was all typed on my Surface Pro with the Type Cover.

#9 Posted by UnlimitedSheep (33 posts) -

@butano: This sounds perfect! The ability to draw and write with a stylus would be awesome when I meet with clients. The weight isn't an issue, I just need it to be small enough to be able to carry daily in a shoulder bag. As far as the storage goes, if I'm able to save my documents and whatnot to a flashdrive rather than the tablet, is the storage just going to get taken up by whatever programs/apps I install? Since I would continue to use my laptop as my primary computer and would only use the tablet when I'm on the go, I can't imagine needing to add a whole lot of software. So maybe the small storage size wouldn't be an issue then?

Sorry for all the questions, but it's awesome to hear directly from someone who owns one!

#10 Posted by SSully (4118 posts) -

@butano: This sounds perfect! The ability to draw and write with a stylus would be awesome when I meet with clients. The weight isn't an issue, I just need it to be small enough to be able to carry daily in a shoulder bag. As far as the storage goes, if I'm able to save my documents and whatnot to a flashdrive rather than the tablet, is the storage just going to get taken up by whatever programs/apps I install? Since I would continue to use my laptop as my primary computer and would only use the tablet when I'm on the go, I can't imagine needing to add a whole lot of software. So maybe the small storage size wouldn't be an issue then?

Sorry for all the questions, but it's awesome to hear directly from someone who owns one!

Also keep in mind that it comes with 200GB of skydrive storage for 2 years. So between using a flash drive, skydrive, and any other cloud storage services you should be good. I have a 128gb yoga laptop and with a few games and software I use for work I usually float around 60gbs of free space. Having cloud storage to offset my storage issues is a huge help.

#11 Posted by UnlimitedSheep (33 posts) -

@ssully: Awesome. I think most of my concerns have been assuaged, I feel a lot better now! Sounds like the Surface is going to be what I go with, it meets all my needs.

Thanks everyone for all the help!