Microsoft Surface Pro vs Apple iPad 4
Oh man! Boy is there no competition whatsoever in this department, as a quick look shows us that the Surface Pro is packing a measly 0.9-megapixel fixed focused camera – whereas the iPad 4 boasts a more modest 5-megapixel auto-focus one. Simply put it people, the disparity shows clearly through with the results, as the iPad’s quality is far sharper than the muddy visuals put out by its rival. Moreover, Apple’s baby also shows its superiority in low lighting shots too!
Microsoft Surface Pro Sample Video:
Apple iPad 4 Sample Video:
Since its inception, we haven’t seen any changes with the iPad’s music player, which at this point, doesn’t have the same level of visual appeal seen on the Microsoft Surface Pro’s music player. Unfortunately though, the Surface Pro’s speakers are simply lackluster with their output – so it’s easily drowned out by the iPad 4’s stronger volume.
Effortlessly playing high-definition videos, the only difference here is that the Surface Pro has support for an array of video codecs out of the box – whereas with the iPad 4, it requires some conversion to properly get videos loaded. Indeed, the widescreen format of the Surface Pro’s display is ideal for the situation, but we can’t count out the enchanting appeal of the iPad 4’s iridescent Retina Display.
Sure, it would’ve been nice to see a standard HDMI port of the Surface Pro, but nevertheless, it has the slight advantage over the iPad 4 seeing that it has a separate mini DisplayPort for video-out functionality. With the iPad 4, it requires a separate adapter cable to gain it.
1. Furbal (Posts: 614; Member since: 22 Sep 2012)
$699 for a tablet vs $899 touchscreen ultrabook. Ill take the ultrabook.
10. imsickwithsmartphone (Posts: 153; Member since: 28 Jan 2013)
GO APPLE!! GO APPLE!!
13. feres13 (Posts: 306; Member since: 23 Dec 2011)
Should compare it to the 32 GB iPad since even that ipad comes with more storage than the 64 GB surface pro
So it's 599$ vs 899$
26. -box- (Posts: 3977; Member since: 04 Jan 2012)
You can easily free more storage, mostly by moving the recovery partitions to external storage. There's a LifeHacker article on it. You technically get more storage from a 128GB Surface than you do from a 128GB muckbook (by like 3GB from the factory, more if you move the unneeded files off the main drive)
33. Lumache (Posts: 11; Member since: 17 Feb 2013)
Actually after a little cleanup you can get 40GB free on a Surface Pro 64GB. ALSO, you can add multiple other storage options to it. You can print without a special printer. You can add up SDHC 64GB cards. I have a 32gb in Mine now. My 128 has all my office productivity tools installed, including ADUC tool set, SDKs and Office. VPN Software, HEAT and ITunes and other stuff and I have 76.8GB free. Oh and all I had to do to print to my printer was call up word and click print. I didn't even have to install drivers - it found the device and did it for me. Freaked me out a little but yea. The USB port rocks, the file system. The HDMI out port and OS support for it. With a USB wireless Mouse and keyboard I bought for $14.99 I can control Netflix on my big screen from across the house.
Here is how I see it:
IPAD easy to use,not easy to use as a Business tool, Pricey for what you get.
Surface Pro - what I have DREAMED of for many years. Its an ULTRA ULTRABOOK.
-Posted from the Pro 128
47. MobileKicker (Posts: 212; Member since: 19 Sep 2013)
Cause u hate apple
Fools hate apple ipad
22. wp8forever (unregistered)
phonearena understand this , it looks like a tablet , BUT IS NOT LOL, so don't compare a toy , to a full computer ,try to flash an android device , jailbreak and iphone , root , and so so so so so so on with and ipad or any android tablet , guess what is not happening .
48. MobileKicker (Posts: 212; Member since: 19 Sep 2013)
Of course android didn't took over apple in the tablet & notebook market
It can never overcome the iPads and the legend MacBooks
Wait a minute...
Where are all the android lovers can't see
2. nlbates66 (Posts: 321; Member since: 15 Aug 2012)
kinda pointless, like comparing a MacBook Air to a gaming laptop
3. the_best (Posts: 139; Member since: 14 Oct 2012)
In the end there can only be one winner!
Who in the world would want 1 million apps, when they can have every app ever created..
But pricing and apple religion will take some time to overcome.
11. alterecho (Posts: 1096; Member since: 23 Feb 2012)
Not to mention the fact that it can run Android apps using Bluestack, and ability to run older PC games and emullators. The iPad is also very capable though. I personally prefer a 4:3 ratio of the iPad for a tablet. 16:9 looks lame to hold. The main problem with the iPad is the dependance on iTunes for media transfer and file management.
27. -box- (Posts: 3977; Member since: 04 Jan 2012)
It may seem "lame" to hold, but after playing with one (Surface RT, mind you) for about a half hour at the local Best Buy, I think that the shape is preferable, as it works better with the OS, and when using for widescreen movies or side-by-side apps, there's more actual usable room.
That said, after using it, I'd still spend the extra dough for an Asus Tai Chi or some of the other ultrabook/tablet hybrids. As much as I'd be using the device on a counter or as a photo frame when it's not in use, the angle of the kickstand was less than perfect for multiple-height uses (though great if it's on a desk or table and you're sitting before it), where a laptop or an adjustable hinge angle is preferable
34. Lumache (Posts: 11; Member since: 17 Feb 2013)
The pro is significantly 'BEEFIER' than the RT. Its about 2 Lbs. And Yea a Tai Chi though? What is the double sided screen about? When would I need that?
But I see your point. Hey man if an Ultrabook is what your heart desires, go for it and let us know what you got and how you like it and why. Would love to hear all about it.
4. Droid_X_Doug (Posts: 5993; Member since: 22 Dec 2010)
I posted in other threads that I think the Surface Pro is a real opportunity for MS. Get the weight down, bump up the processor, RAM and storage, and they have something that could munch the iPad and mid-tier notebook markets. Office helps leverage MS' offering.
I just hope MS doesn't go and f*ck up this opportunity.
12. CardiWPfan (Posts: 129; Member since: 12 Sep 2012)
I have one word for ya The Surface Pro 2 coming in October 2013!! Watch the evolution unfolds!!
30. Droid_X_Doug (Posts: 5993; Member since: 22 Dec 2010)
I am definitely watching to see what v. 2.0 of the Surface Pro looks like. Either SP v. 2.0 or maybe one of the hardware partners step up to the plate. Sony Duo v. 2.0 could be a contender, too.
Surface Pro concept could be the next big thing. They proved the concept could be produced. Now they just need to make it compelling.
35. Lumache (Posts: 11; Member since: 17 Feb 2013)
If Microsoft says October 2013 that means February 2014. My case in point? The Surface Pro I am typing this on.
16. cornerofthemoon (Posts: 569; Member since: 20 Apr 2010)
Unfortunately, MS has a way of f*cking up opportunities. However the Surface Pro may at the very least become a viable niche player. The RT platform is probably doomed however. It's a shame because I really like it.
5. cezarepc (Posts: 674; Member since: 23 Nov 2012)
First time iPad is the lesser priced device. But still these are totally different tablets. A consumption device and a productivity device. I'm already saving up to get a Windows 8 tab just so I can run visual basic.
28. -box- (Posts: 3977; Member since: 04 Jan 2012)
Not the first time. HTC Jetstream comes to mind.... Grossly overpriced for what it was.
6. duwiegeneral (Posts: 48; Member since: 07 Dec 2012)
FINALY!!! SURFACE PRO SHOWS WHAT A TABLET SHOULD REALLY B...
15. haseebzahid (Posts: 1853; Member since: 22 Feb 2012)
my point exactly kids or teens buy toy oh iPad
other people get surface pro once they have enough money though :D
7. Basharhd99 (Posts: 58; Member since: 05 Jul 2012)
windows vs ios, takes pictures on android :/ great job phonearena
8. tiara6918 (Posts: 1942; Member since: 26 Apr 2012)
Microsoft should adjust the pricing of their surface pro, for $900 dollars I could get a new laptop with better storage,faster processor,battery life and so many more
29. -box- (Posts: 3977; Member since: 04 Jan 2012)
True, but I think the Surface is for a niche market. I don't think they expect huge sales numbers, rather to be a benchmark for the platform, like a Nexus, if you will, for Windows 8. Not always the best value or highest-spec, but well-rounded and a good buy.
36. Lumache (Posts: 11; Member since: 17 Feb 2013)
But that Laptop will weigh like 5Lbs. You are not going to get a better spec ultrabook in the 999$ arena. But I hear ya. Spend extra for what you want. So far this Pro is fast and a pleasure to own. I had some driver issues but I think "THINK" recent updates resolved them.
9. twens (Posts: 849; Member since: 25 Feb 2012)
Like seriously, has the world gone Apple crazy to start comparing computers to Ipads? Its a shame, a very big one.
17. noim1 (Posts: 297; Member since: 15 May 2012)
It's like comparing a Lion to a Cat!!! Makes me laugh....i can do anything with my surface pro, anything at all!!!....... Apple can't beat this monster just like they could not do it back inn theMAc days...
18. davkaramagi (Posts: 4; Member since: 21 Sep 2011)
I think it's quite unfair to compare the iPad and Surface Pro. To me the serve different purposes and appeal to users with different usage patterns. If you are looking for a content consumption gadget, love games and for this narrowly scoped work related task usage, iPad makes sense. And price point makes sense for this limited scope.
But, if you want the best of both worlds, something that can run legacy apps, do some real work but in tablet format, Surface Pro is king, albeit, you have to choke up the money!!
Granted W8 lacks the bulk of apps for content consumption or plethora of games we now are used to like other tablets, it's catching & fast. They only need to make use of ecosystem including xbox games cleverly to bridge gaps.
Key selling point that MS should push to justify $900 is that Surface Pro (can be argued) can replace an iPad and Laptop if someone is in the market for the 2 items ($500+$700)
19. 7thspaceman (Posts: 1355; Member since: 14 Feb 2011)
folks there will be 2 types of tablets on the market 1=The General Tablets like the Apple Ipads ,the Android tablets and the new "Windows RT Tablets" and 2=The Full Windows Desktop Tablets that run Windows 7 or Run Windows 8 for those who want to run full featured Windows Desktop/Laptop/Sever programs on them. thw people who want to runs full featured Windows OS Programs on them will go for the Windows 8 or 7 tablets many of these People look at the Ipad as a toy not worth their time or money because no Ipad or
Android tablet can run full featured Windows Desktp/Laptop/Server programs. a lot of people who can afford will have a Surface Windows 8 tablet for Serious business work and use an android or Ipad for general internet based activities The ipad is for one group of People and the Surface pro is for another group of people ther are a lot of windows fans who want a good Windows tablet. The surface pro first sales day was good People formed lines around some stores to buy the 128 gig Surface Pro so that proves my point that a lot of windows users are looking for a good Windows tablet some even have an Ipad but it's not a Windows Tablet it wont meet their needs of running full Featured Windows programs thbey have good choices the Surface pro is not the cheapest or most Powerful Windows 8 tablet out their, Lenovo makes an i7 intel CPU Windows 8 tablet that can run without a hitch every Windows program or high end PC game. it is considered the best one out there by many folks
20. feres13 (Posts: 306; Member since: 23 Dec 2011)
It's totally unfair to compare a tablet to an ultrabook? Wanna be fair? Compare the iPad to the surface RT, and then we'll talk
37. Lumache (Posts: 11; Member since: 17 Feb 2013)
Right on. And Apple just lowered the price of the Mac Book Air 13 by 100$ after the Surface Pro launched. Coincidence?
21. JunitoNH (Posts: 1313; Member since: 15 Feb 2012)
MS, really? This is all pointless and a sham. If you wanted a laptop just buy one; no need to buy keyboard and accessories, do it yourself replacement of optical drive and adding ram and storage. Hell, you are better of with a chrome book for $259. Machine is targeted at a small market, people whom love to brag and/or folks with lots of disposable income.
23. Jonathan41 (Posts: 532; Member since: 22 Mar 2012)
Why isn't there a gaming category in these comparisons?
24. yougotkilled1 (Posts: 167; Member since: 27 Apr 2011)
This isn't even a comparison between tablets. You're comparing a full blown OS where it runs like a computer where the iPad is very restricted in terms of OS. Of course the surface pro would be a much better option over the iPad. A more complete comparison such as feres13 said, compare the iPad to the surface RT.
25. Taters (Posts: 4987; Member since: 28 Jan 2013)
Once the PRO becomes as thin as my Nexus 10, I'll be the first in line. After my crappy Toshiba laptop dies that is, which might be awhile longer. lol
31. -box- (Posts: 3977; Member since: 04 Jan 2012)
I'm glad so many know that this is an unbalanced test. That said, it's good to get that sort of news out, as many uninformed shoppers will go to their favored electronics outlet and ask for a tablet, and the uninformed may be led into the evil apple garden. Those that research will be able to see that it's a giant ipod, and that to get an actual computer may require a bit of extra cash (though there are a few touchscreen Windows8 tablets and laptop/tablet hybrids for around the ipad prices, though most have Atom processors)
41. Lumache (Posts: 11; Member since: 17 Feb 2013)
Funny this sites comments don't support touch. My Pro 128 ROCKS dude. I am loving it.
32. nemesis4670 (Posts: 4; Member since: 17 Nov 2012)
How about a real review from an honest customer?
Do you want to explain why every single picture you're holding the Surface Pro sideways? It's a landscape device hence the Windows logo on the long end. The design and screen look their best in landscape mode. Just as the iPad is a portrait device hence why you didn't show it in landscape mode. Bias #1.
Also how about comparing the way HD movies look on both or the design of the apps look, instead of just posting some crappy pictures of flowers and the start screen BOTH in portrait mode. Bias #2
NOT ONE picture shows the device in landscape. WTF kind of review is this?
iPad 4 movies look like crap because of the 4:3 ratio while the Surface Pro's screen is AMAZING full screen HD video. Go put a bluray rip on it and download VLC player (another thing you can't do on iPad), something like Avengers 1080p and you'll be blown away by the video quality on the Surface Pro.
Also your review is totally ridiculous. When purchasing the Surface Pro we examined the iPad 4 screen and the Surface Pro's display was much sharper and the image just pops a lot more. The Windows Store apps are also designed a lot better and are pleasing to the eye. Apple apps used to be the gold standard but the Metro apps look clean and fresh, and make Apple apps look like they are from the Macintosh era. Plus Surface Pro offers the ability to run any 64-bit windows legacy software so you can basically do whatever you want.
I've managed to run Dead Space 3, a brand new game, on 720p res with medium settings and the game still looks amazing. It runs at 50fps or more. I also played Hitman Absolution and DmC Devil May Cry. The games just need to be on 720p to run well but that's in comparison to playing ANGRY BIRDS on the iPad.
I've been noticing every single site known for being biased towards Apple puts a landscape device in portrait mode or compares the Galaxy S3 to the iPhone 5 by showing the GS3 app drawer instead of the Home screen. So it removes the chance for potential buyers to see the live widgets and more customizable homescreen in comparison to the iPhone.
Surface Pro's design will be a matter of taste. If you prefer something that looks like a finely crafted industrial tool then go for the Surface Pro. If you want something that looks like a hipster's futuristic toy with bright colors then go with the iPad 4.
If you want to be able to have both an amazing touch screen experience as well as a full desktop experience go for the Surface Pro. If you want to be stuck comprimising all of your daily tasks with mundane restrictive mobile apps, or limiting your usage to scheduling doctors appointments and playing Angry Birds then go for the iPad 4.
Oh and the word JAILBREAK doesn't even come into play with the Surface Pro. Simply because you don't have that headache and you're not waiting 6 months just to install apps that offer features that Apple was too lazy to provide in the first place.
40. Lumache (Posts: 11; Member since: 17 Feb 2013)
You mean that apple was too greedy to provide in the first place?
42. nemesis4670 (Posts: 4; Member since: 17 Nov 2012)
Yea pretty much. I just find it funny that the most important thing for Apple devices is a third party hack that allows users to completely change the interface and add features that are "coincidentally" features that Android devices have out of the box. Just get an Android phone!
I have no loyalty to any brand. I have owned an iPhone, Windows Mobile Phone, Windows 7 Phone, Android Phone & Tablet, and I am contemplating upgrading to a newer Windows 8 Phone.
The Surface Pro is a home run for Microsoft. People are so quick to finalize the Surface Pro not realizing that this is a full product lineup. There will be new versions of the Surface Pro and it will only get better from here. Compare this to the first iPad and it's a ridiculous night and day difference. This device is a HUGE leap forward for Microsoft and you will NOT be disappointed if you buy one.
Just make sure you get the 128GB model and the Type cover and you'll be set. When you receive it you will immediately feel that it was worth every penny. Not once did I say "wow this wasn't worth $1000". It LOOKS expensive and performs like an expensive gadget.
I still can't believe a self proclaimed "professional" reviewer would place the Surface Pro in portrait mode for all of the photos. It just boggles my mind that he wouldn't think to photograph it the way it's used 90% of the time.
Another thing he forgot is that the Surface Pro has the same magnet charger as the MacBook Pro. You simply place the charging cable near the side of the Surface Pro and it flies into place using the same magnets that attach the Keyboard covers. VERY useful as it prevents accidents if you trip over the cable.
Also compare MORE apps like eBay, Netflix, Newegg, and also note the apps that iPad DOESN'T have like uTorrent! You will see just how amazing the Windows 8 apps look in comparison to Apple apps. Apple apps all have that same boring menu bar at the bottom and it's getting OLD.
The iPad silver aluminum definitely does not look better than the black slate VaporMg casing either. I beg anyone who is choosing between the two to go hold the Surface Pro in person. It won't compare to the experience of getting a brand new one but it'll still be cool. The packaging for the Surface Pro is beautiful in itself and taking the plastic off a brand new one you will be amazed. You will spend 15 minutes just examining the device around in awe.
If you need some convincing that black slate VaporMg is better than silver aluminum, just look how every Apple device is being changed to the same black slate colored aluminum. The iPad mini is black slate and so are the iPods. So it's obvious the iPad 5 will also be changed.
The Vapor Magnesium Alloy is stronger, thinner, and lighter than aluminum too. It just feels better in your hands! NO CONTEST! Now let's just hope for a Surface Phone and the Surface Pro 2.
44. rayxxxray (Posts: 4; Member since: 20 Feb 2013)
These are apple fan boys! What are you expecting? Probably get paid by apple also.
38. Lumache (Posts: 11; Member since: 17 Feb 2013)
Surface Pro, RT, IPAD3 and Lenovo Thinkpad2. I have owned all but the last one and had a chance to stage Thinkpad2 Tablet this week. It was a great cross between an RT and a PRO for Business Productivity Apps only. Try watching a Video on a Tablet2 and it becomes clear that the Clover Trail chip fails in this area. Maybe Driver updates will fix it, we will have to see.
But - Back to the Article at hand.
The people saying that the Article is flawed are right to some degree but I sometimes compare my cats to my dog. Both are cute and furry and love me unconditionally but they are different animals.
It is true that this Article, like many others, should have opted to compare the Apple Mac Book Air 13" Model to the Surface Pro. That is the most fair comparison as far as devices go. I could get an IPAD at work but wouldn't want one. Trying to use one as a Business Tool is just a lesson in how resourceful you can be with duct tape and bailing wire. Its not that type of device. Much the same, the Mac Book Air is honestly not a productivity device.
But it is a more directly comparable Device to the Surface Pro. At least, its what Apple has to offer.
The RT was annoying for me due its lack of SSL VPN client support and the lockdown you are under. If it is not in the APP store you cant use it. For me that's an issue. We are currently fleshing out a Citrix solution to push productivity apps to the device, but I do not think the device has enough traction to stay the course in our organization.
The IPAD, we have them and some people use them, but I think its to check email? Not sure where they actually 'FIT' in our organization.
ThinkPad Tablet2 (CloverTrail based 32 bit Pro) Devices. Nice Battery Life... Snappy Office and Adobe performance unless you mean CS5 and then forget it. Video playback is BAD. There is no way to put a pretty face on that one... BAD. As a productivity, Meeting Room tool, its not bad .. 9 hours + of battery life is pretty impressive.
43. nemesis4670 (Posts: 4; Member since: 17 Nov 2012)
The Surface RT was pretty pointless. I think they should have either put all of their research and development into the Surface Pro OR they should have released both products at the same time. They would have avoided the stain that the RT left behind, which probably hurt the Surface Pro sales. Even though it's sold out at most retailers it could have been even better.
Secondly I am guessing that by next year they will be able to fit the Surface Pro components inside the thinner Surface RT form factor. If they even keep the RT model in the lineup it will probably be even thinner than it is now. I don't see them updating it unless the Windows Store has quadroupled in size by next year.
Parts are getting smaller everyday. Intel has some new chips coming out that are incredibly power efficient and give off much less heat. So there are so many potential ways the Surface Pro can be improved in the next version.
Maybe add a 2nd USB 3.0 port or include a well designed portable USB hub. Also create a slot for the stylus to slide into, since you currently lose the magnet port while you're charging the device. Causing you to place the stylus off to the side. It can get lost really easily considering the battery life causes you to be charging quite often.
There are two extra connector ports next to the magnet port for the keyboard covers. Microsoft hasn't revealed what these are for and only calls them "accessory ports". Apparently Microsoft is going to create a new keyboard cover that will have an external battery inside to add battery life to the Surface. This is totally feasible since they designed those ports to transfer high voltage current between the surface and keyboard.
My ASUS Infinity had a keyboard dock that added 4 hours of battery life and was only a tiny bit thicker than the Type Cover. The actual battery inside the tablet itself was a pretty big 3380mAh battery, but was actually THINNER than the Surface Type cover. So they could definitely fit something like that inside the keyboard and potentially add another 4 hours of battery life. Maybe even more.
They could also redesign the kickstand hinge to have 2 different positions. Although I have had no trouble using the Surface Pro on my lap with the type cover at the current angle, I would still welcome a new viewing angle just so it's more versatile. The Surface Pro actually has a better viewing degree angle than the Surface RT did. They offset it a couple of degrees to make it more standard.
I could easily imagine a lock position directly in between the current closed and fully open position. But the hinge would have to be really sturdy so that it doesn't open all the way if you put slight pressure down on it.
All in all I LOVE the Surface Pro and I feel like I am ahead of the curve just by owning it. I recommend it to anyone. It has the build quality, attention to detail, and well designed apps that people want with a totally new approach and full Windows OS. A+
39. Lumache (Posts: 11; Member since: 17 Feb 2013)
I just spent 30 minutes editing the above post only to have it error out on me, time out and undo all that work. Wow.
45. mayfly007 (Posts: 1; Member since: 26 Apr 2013)
I have experience with both machines. The author misses the point carrying on about the camera and such. You dont need a Ferrari to go to your local 7/11 when the BMW gets you there just fine. Now turn on your Surface Pro run Adobe CS6, Bridge, Dreamweaver, Photoshop, Outlook 2013 while uploading big files to your Skydrive all at the same time and then take another look at the iPad. You are comparing C6 dynamite to a fire cracker.
46. TheDave (Posts: 1; Member since: 15 Aug 2013)
I would agree with most of the comments here. The surface is a much more powerful machine. However, the price differential is huge in the UK. The ipad retails from £399 - £639 ($620 - $993) while the Surface is £720 - £799 ($1120 - $1242).
That's a big difference and while I agree the Surface is a far more powerful machine, MS are asking us to pay
49. Lumache (Posts: 11; Member since: 17 Feb 2013)
After putting up with failed updates, firmware issues and all around WONKY and BAD performance, I returned my Surface Pro 128. Its just not ready for prime time. Nice of the operators of Surfaceforums.net to ban me for simply stating the truth: Windows 8 is TERRIBLE and the Surface Pro is a bad idea period. Not saying go buy an iPad but if you want something that wont act nuts 90% of the time Either iPad or Android will serve you better. Updates failing, apps refusing to run or update,. email that wont sync or needs to be reloaded so that 2 days of sync will actually display in my inbox. Windows 8 is terrible - T E R R I B L E and will eclipse VISTA as the universal term for BAD when speaking of an OS.
Steve Ballmer cant leave soon enough... the rest of them need to go as well. Julie Larson Green - the whole lot of people over there living in the past and putting out BAD need to be fired ASAP.
Let me just sum up:
If Microsoft was a startup and had to sink or swim on just Windows 8 and the RT/Pro, chances are you would be able to buy their office furniture on Amazon right now. --me
Windows RT tablet failures were not a result of consumers misguided or unrealistic expectations of them, but their utter failure to meet even the lowest of even the most reasonable ones. --me
Lower your expectations computing wont work in the world of iPad's. Even your Grandmother can make an iPad work and work well. --me
50. Lumache (Posts: 11; Member since: 17 Feb 2013)
Even the wonkiest work-around on an iPad is better than the best functioning Microsoft Metro, or whatever they are calling the MODERN interface this week, is now. Seriously METRO is the BAD.