Surface 3 review: Finally, a cheap Surface you'd actually want
Microsoft's Surface 3 is the purest distillation of its hybrid tablet/laptop concept yet. It packs in a healthy amount of functionality for its $499 price, though be ready to pay another $130 for its keyboard.
- The lightest Surface yet
- Extremely versatile as both a tablet and laptop
- Runs all Windows software
- Stylus support is a nice bonus
- Keyboard is another $130
- Entry model has only 2GB RAM
- Not powerful enough for anything beyond basic computing
Once again, the third time's the charm for Microsoft's Surface lineup -- for the most part. Last year's Surface Pro 3 was the software giant's most compelling implementation yet of its hybrid laptop/tablet concept. Now we have the Surface 3, the third entry in its cheaper Surface lineup. And while it may look similar to its predecessors, it's actually a completely different beast. It's a $499 Surface tablet that can actually run all of the Windows programs you're used to, not just Windows 8 apps. And to Windows RT, the stripped down version of Microsoft's OS that previously powered the non-Pro Surface tablets, all I have to say is: So long, goodbye. Don't let the door hit you on the way out! By giving up on Windows RT, Microsoft has finally managed to make a decent cheap Surface.
How It Stacks Up
Galaxy Note 10.1
iPad Air 2
ARM-powered Windows 10 laptops will arrive this holiday
Hopefully Microsoft has learned its lesson from Windows RT.
Windows 10's biannual update schedule starts in September
Expect new feature releases every spring and fall moving forward.