Microsoft Surface RT Review – Problems

surface_boxOk with a few more weeks under normal usage, the Surface RT still works perfectly however I have encountered a number of issues and problems with the operating system –  Windows RT.

The first and most obvious problem is that Microsoft App store really needs more developers it is quite bare and many of the Apps are not as good as the Android or Apple Apps given that they are made by the same developers. Then again there are a small number of gems that are at least better than those on Android or iPads. Despite that lack of 3rd party Apps, the out of the box usefulness is excellent.

The second most glaring fault is the absence of Microsoft Outlook email software. I do understand from a developer’s point of view why it’s not there BUT the inclusion of software will convince many more to buy a Windows RT tablet.

The third problem is bad press: I can’t understand why claimed professional commentators don’t understand the difference between the touch orientated Start menu interface and the desktop option. I believe that Microsoft have managed to hide all the more geek settings quite nicely for the average non-geek user. That said Windows RT can still do multiple windows and even split screen if you need it to? I think they need to be a bit smarter because if a 60 year old and a 10 year old over Christmas can understand it after less than an hour with it… Mind you the only problem was locating the context sensitive search function.

That said everything is relative and after using the Surface RT exclusively when I picked up and iPad  for comparison, the Apple product did feel less polished. The Apps store is the only feature that keeps the iPad in front.

Update Jan 2013: That said the Microsoft store is a very flaky piece of software. Sometimes it works and sometime it doesn’t…

Update Feb 2013: Drop down menus on certain websites no longer work properly. Very disappointing since they work on the iPad.

I haven’t liked Microsoft operating systems for a while now but I think Windows RT and Windows 8 is step in the right direction especially as a home user.

Microsoft Surface RT Review – Speed demon

surface_openThe Surface RT tablet is still working! Since the lastest round of software updates all the standard Apps and games now work perfectly. The greatest issue I had before deciding to buy the tablet was making sure it would work at my speed. Memories of the sluggish Netbooks still linger likewise the smoothness and speed of the iPads lifted my expectations. 

I can now confirm that the Surface RT works at a speed great speed. At the same time the user interface and smooth and there are no lags apart from when running new Apps and slow internet download speeds. Sure I had to get used to the context sensitive menus and the global search function but it didn’t take very long to get used to!

Once again I cannot stop expressing how impressed I am with the default web browser. Internet Explorer 10 compatible with all the full websites that I use and those that my friends use. For example whilst  shopping whist Christmas shopping with my usual crew one of us decides that they need to check eTrade for one of their lingering trades. Since there are no Apps for the site we decided to get the  Surface RT a go logging in. The result was impressive the full Australian eTrade website and even the CommSec share trading websites worked perfectly. Needless to say I know someone else who will have a Surface for Christmas 2012.