We are seeing a flood of Haswell-powered gear these days, and Microsoft just threw its hat into the ring with the new Surface Pro 2
tablet, powered by a 4th generation Intel Core i5 processor of unspecified frequency, sometimes even with fanless designs, like HP's Sceptre 13 x2
. These all share a thing in common - they are the first true Windows tablets that can run legacy programs, and still churn out a battery life worthy of iOS or Android slates, thanks to Intel's power-sipping new silicon.
Other companies came out with very compelling Win 8 Pro slates, but Microsoft's Surface Pro 2 is a big improvement over the unique Surface Pro
before it, too, so let's see how it stacks up against its predecessor, and against the thinnest Win 8 Pro tab out there, Sony's Vaio Tap 11
, thrown in as another Core iX-powered representative.
With Haswell chipsets we get much better battery life, and that's the main advantage that the Pro 2 has both before the original, and before the Vaio Tap 11, whose slim physique doesn't have place for a bigger battery. The first Surface Pro ran for 3-5 hours before dying off, and Sony thus cites about six hours of battery life out of its 11-incher, while the 10.6" Pro 2 will run north of eight hours on average, says Microsoft, and up to 10 with light usage, which is about as much as Android and iOS slates go.
Next up is the screen, which keeps the 10.6" dimensions, Full HD resolution and ClearType tech of its predecessor, but is now calibrated for up to 46% better color accuracy, meaning it is suitable for professional use, too. Sony's 11" panel is also with 1920x1080 pixels, meaning it sports lesser pixel
density, though at the distance you usually use tablets, the difference is unlikely to be noticed unless you are a screen purist. Microsoft also cites record low reflectivity for its panel, which makes all the difference between a barely noticeable and a readable screen outdoors, but we'll have to take the slates out to determine how much better sunlight visibility is in reality.
Unfortunately we only know the Surface Pro 2 starting price of $899, and are still in the dark about the Vaio Tap 11, which is much thinner, perhaps lighter, and starts you off with double the storage, not to mention the USB 3.0 port integration in its slim chassis - if its price is about that of Microsoft's second Surface Pro edition Sony's "thinnest tablet PC" would be a winner, save for the all important endurance aspect. What do you think?
|Device type||Surface Pro 2||Surface Pro||Sony Vaio Tap 11|
|OS||Windows (8.1 Pro)||Windows (8 Pro)||Windows (8 Pro)|
|Dimensions|| 10.81 x 6.81 x 0.53 inches (275 x 173 x 13 mm)||10.81 x 6.81 x 0.53 inches (275 x 173 x 13 mm)|| 304.6 x 188 x 9.9mm|
|Weight|| 32.00 oz (907 g)||32.00 oz (907 g)|
the average is 17.4 oz (496 g)
|Physical size||10.6 inches||10.6 inches||11.6 inches|
|Resolution||1920 x 1080 pixels||1920 x 1080 pixels||1920 x 1080 pixels|
|208 ppi||208 ppi||190 ppi|
|IPS LCD||IPS LCD|| Triluminous display|
|1.6 GHz Dual core, Intel Core i5||Dual core, 1700 MHz, Intel Core i5-3317U||Intel Core i5|
|Graphics processor||Intel HD Graphics 4400||Intel HD Graphics 4000||Intel HD Graphics 4400|
|4096 MB RAM||4096 MB RAM (Dual-channel)||4096 MB RAM|
|Built-in storage||64 GB||64 GB|| 128 GB|
|Storage expansion||microSD, microSDHC, microSDXC||microSD, microSDHC, microSDXC||microSD, microSDHC|
|Camera||Yes||1 megapixel||8 megapixels|
|Camcorder||Yes||1280x720 (720p HD) (29 fps)||Yes|
|Video capture|| 1280x720 (720p HD)||1280x720 (720p HD)|| Full HD|
|Officially announced||23 Sep 2013||18 Jun 2012|| 04 Sep 2013|
|22 Oct 2013 (Official)|| ||Q4|
|Warranty period|| ||12 Months|| |
|MSRP price|| $ 899|| $ 899|| n/a|