Pages

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Surface Pro 3 - A New Computing Paradigm


Post-PC to Tablet-Plus

Steve Jobs declared that the iPad had brought us to the "Post-PC" era, with this analogy: "When we were an agrarian nation, all cars were trucks. But as people moved more towards urban centers, people started to get into cars. I think PCs are going to be like trucks. Less people will need them. And this transformation is going to make some people uneasy... because the PC has taken us a long way."
 
Witness the first cross-over - the Surface Pro 3. Quite frankly, most in the tech press don't understand it (or don't WANT to understand it), and Microsoft exacerbated the problem by focusing on "the tablet that can replace your laptop" and aiming directly at the MacBook Air. The SPro 3 will never be as light and breezy as the iPad Air, nor will it be as stable and "lapable" as a true laptop. Just like the cross-over, it won't be as comfortable as a Mercedes sedan, nor have the hauling capacity of an F150. But you will get five full size adults to their destination in a nice comfortable cabin, yet still haul the plants and potting soil for your weekend yard work. This all came to full realization to me while reading an excellent two part series posted by Dr. Tom Grissom at his blog:
 
 
I can't recommend these two articles enough; not because of his review of the Surface Pro 3 itself (which he has yet to receive, like the rest of us mere mortals), but because of his analysis of the basic reasons for its existence, and the endless possibilities it brings to the computing table. He discusses in detail the transformative quality of what SPro 3 delivers, and although from an educational market perspective, his series of "Imagine" hypotheticals are truly the essence of what should be Microsoft's marketing campaign, not some 20-something using his SPro from an alarm clock to a board meeting in a series of fast paced disjointed MTV-like montage.
 
We are ten days from launch, and I will be using that time to build and present to you all of the reviews, hints, and other SPro 3 goodies I can find on the net. In the meantime, begin your exploration of this transformative device at your local Microsoft Store (or Best Buy - if you're lucky they'll have a demo unit), then absorb Paul Thurrott's extremely thorough review series (the link below takes you to his general review which is linked to around 20 smaller reviews he has done in the last two weeks following the announcement of the SPro 3:
 
 
.
 
 

7 comments:

cybermind said...

Dale, once again, a great write up (and nice comment on Tom's article too). I also enjoyed your rant from the previous post. I think overall MS has a major marketing problem. The positioning needs to strike the imagination of the viewers, as Tom so eloquently put it. He said, "the tablet that can do more than replace your laptop" and I'd also add, "a better laptop than your iPad, and a better tablet than your MacBook Air". Something along those lines... I own a marketing company that does some minor vendor work for MS, and I'd like to put together a compilation of the best ideas out there to present to my contacts, and I'm glad you pointed out those links.

SP3 Core i7/500gb/8gb on the way to me, even if I've had the SP2 since November only. After having a look at it in the Microsoft Store, I can safely say, there is nothing like it. Even my wife, who is into the Apple ecosystem, totally agrees.

cybermind said...

Dale, once again, a great write up (and nice comment on Paul's post). I think MS has a major marketing problem, and they need to strike the imagination of the audience, as Paul so eloquently described. Paul said, "the tablet that can do more than replace your laptop", and I'd like to also add, "a better laptop than an iPad, a better tablet than a MacBook Air". Something along those lines... I own a marketing company that does minor vendor work for MS, and I would like to compile these ideas to present to my contacts.

SP3, core i7/512gb/8gb on the way to me, even if I've only owned my SP2 since November. I was able to spend some time with it at the MS store, and hands down, it is a marvel of technology, it finally feels right. Heck, even my wife, who is in the Apple ecosystem, agrees that it's a massive improvement.

cybermind said...

Dale, once again, a great write up (and nice comment on Paul's post). I think MS has a major marketing problem, and they need to strike the imagination of the audience, as Paul so eloquently described. Paul said, "the tablet that can do more than replace your laptop", and I'd like to also add, "a better laptop than an iPad, a better tablet than a MacBook Air". Something along those lines... I own a marketing company that does minor vendor work for MS, and I would like to compile these ideas to present to my contacts.

SP3, core i7/512gb/8gb on the way to me, even if I've only owned my SP2 since November. I was able to spend some time with it at the MS store, and hands down, it is a marvel of technology, it finally feels right. Heck, even my wife, who is in the Apple ecosystem, agrees that it's a massive improvement.

cybermind said...

I said "Paul", I meant "Tom"...oops.

cybermind said...

I said "Paul", I meant "Tom"... oops.

Dale Strauss said...

"A better laptop than an iPad and a better tablet than a MacBook Air." It doesn't get much better than that to describe the Surface Pro 3. I've railed in so many places that MS's advertising has to be more Apple-like and would be devastating:

A doctor logging into morning rounds, submitting case notes, reviewing a tech journal, annotating an x-ray, reviewing patient charts, or

A student taking hand written notes in class; off to library and editing a term paper; then to a club meeting preparing handouts; back tot he dorm and watching Netflix or ESPN.

Neither of these examples is rocket science, yet Microsoft can't help but be "hip." Please, Satya and Panos, watch this years Apple Christmas ad about the boy who memorializes the family Christmas when they think he is just being a self-absorbed iPhone nerd - it is awesome.

Anonymous said...

I have to agree with you that review sites have blinders on. It's the same with screen size on phones...for years they reported that the newest large phones were "unusable" because of their size - conveniently ignoring the huge sales. I decided most tech writers were twenty year old and unable to see past their own interests.
As for surface 4 I LOVE the idea and am very excited. I love the thinness + power + full windows, and I love the screen ratio.
Unfortunately, I won't be getting the surface 3 though I'm thinking perhaps surface 4. I really need a bigger screen than 12 for real work. Besides, waiting might give adobe time to get their act together on scaling, and maybe corel can get their act together and have painter work with n-trig. But in any case, it looks like the skylake cpu should have enough brawn for the kind of games I play.
All that will come, and I'm excited about a full computer that is the same weight as the note12.2 ...as is the surface3 (but hopefully with a bigger screen). :) I would have returned the note12 and gotten the surface 3 if finances weren't so tight. yes, the surface officially starts priced similar to the note12 but: it will be 6 months at least before I can get one used for the $400 range like I did for the note12 (if then- seems the surface 3 brought the note12 used price down in a hurry! :) ). The surface NEEDS beefier specs than the note: programs take more space and ram than little wimpy apps, so the $1200 is the real starting price imo.