We've purchased two windows tablets:
- Original surface @$200
- Dell Venue Pro 11 (the atom variant) @$500
So far the surface has been a stellar tablet in that it works as advertised, and is well-made. The argument that the surface is not quality hardware is frankly silly. It's well-built, regardless of it not being all that fast. Additionally, it being windows RT was, I thought, going to be a real big negative. So far it has proven not to be a big deal, in that besides not being able to use other browsers, pretty much everything I want has some representation in the app store. If only google would compile chrome for arm
Otherwise I can use it like a laptop - office on a big display with keyboard mouse if I want, although I haven't done that much yet. My use case is 95% consumption of media and pecking out emails occasionally. It lasts forever on a battery.
In contrast, the Dell, for a higher res screen and faster hardware, is 2.5 times more expensive, is cheaply-built (plastic case with removable back plate in case I want to tinker with it's guts for some reason) and has crap firmware/drivers. My first impression was "why didn't they make it 2mm thinner by not making it serviceable like this?" Well good thing the back cover is removable because that's the only way to turn the screen on after it's turned itself off - it has serious driver issues, in that you have to remove the battery to get it to cold boot to get the screen to light up again! Okay if you have the power cable plugged in you can hold the power button for 11 seconds then press the power and up keys again and if you are fortunate get it to reset that way...
The dell's screen has major light bleed issues. The powered keyboard accessory is:
- also buggy - it will stop working (registry hack available to work around that, which prevents any USB devices from going to sleep)
- needed to make the battery life comparable.
- needed to make the tablet stand up (no kick stand)
- NOT lighted, unlike the much thinner surface type covers.
So tell me again why the surface is so bad? It at least works. And at the $200 price point, it was a steal.