The private Chicagoland school where Nathan and I work has many hundreds of Windows PCs, Macs, iPads, and far too many new Chromebooks that don’t do enough to teach students about how real computers work.
New to the line are a handful of Microsoft’s new tablet– Surface Go. Wait. What? Microsoft makes a tablet? No. Microsoft’s Surface devices and their Windows 10 kin are appropriately defined as touchscreen notebook tablet hybrids. Surface Go is not a real tablet.
The Microsoft Surface Go Is One Of The Best Work-focused Tablets– And It’s Currently $50 Off For Black Friday
That’s a mouthful headline, typical of BI’s daily scourge of techno-rubbish. Does BI get a cut from products they shill?
Gone are the days when Microsoft was a software company and that’s it.
Except for all the hardware accessories Microsoft sold and sells for a decade. After missing the mobile revolution brought about by Apple, Steve Jobs, and iPhone, Microsoft settled for reinventing the personal computer and calling it a tablet.
These days, the company releases excellent hardware on a yearly basis, and that hardware has been well-reviewed and much-loved.
Sales are flat. Again.
But to be fair, traditional, non-touchscreen PCs are not selling well, but touchscreen notebook tablet hybrids are selling well. Almost as well as the Mac.
Microsoft Surface Go is the smallest and least powerful of the three new devices, but it’s also the cheapest — making it one of the better choices for a portable computer in its price-range.
Wait a minute. Is it a portable computer? A notebook? Or, a tablet? YES! All three. All three in that order. As a tablet, I can tell you from personal experience, Surface Go sucks. As an inexpensive notebook with a touchscreen, provided you get the keyboard, it’s a decent Windows 10 device.
If that’s the case, then what is iPad? A portable computer? Yes. A tablet? Most definitely. A notebook? Yes, it can be a notebook. The differences here should be obvious. iPad Pro is a better notebook than Surface Go is as a tablet.
The overall design of the Surface Go isn’t bad, but in an age of slimming bezels, it does look slightly dated, especially when you use it in tablet mode.
Translation: “This sucker is thick and heavy.”
You will have to pay extra for the Alcantara keyboard.
What if you need a little more power than Surface Go? Even BI points out the obvious:
We recommend instead opting for the slightly more expensive Surface Pro, or considering buying an iPad.
Here’s the deal from someone with experience across the board and cross platform.
An iPad Pro, or any iPad with a Bluetooth keyboard, can double up as a traditional-like personal computer with a higher degree of mobility, more applications, and more capabilities. But an iPad is not a PC with Windows 10 and it’s not a Mac with macOS. It’s a tablet that can do standard PC chores with the right keyboard. A Surface Go is a traditional touchscreen notebook tablet hybrid without a keyboard. That makes it a tablet that sucks as a tablet. Add the keyboard and you get a more traditional notebook with all the frills of Windows 10 at a low price point.
Just don’t call Surface Go a tablet. It. Is. Not.