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Microsoft Surface Pro 2

Microsoft Surface Pro 2

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77 Engadget Score
A good product that falls short of greatness.
77

A good product that falls short of greatness.

How we score

The Engadget Score is a unique ranking of products based on extensive independent research and analysis by our expert editorial and research teams. The Global Score is arrived at only after curating hundreds, sometimes thousands of weighted data points (such as critic and user reviews).

Engadget Review

The new Surface Pro is more viable as a laptop replacement, but it hasn't made much progress as a standalone tablet. Ultimately, it's at its best in laptop mode, but it's still not always as comfortable to use as a proper Ultrabook.

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Pros
  • Attractive, well-built hardware
  • Great display
  • Fast performance, improved battery life
  • More comfortable to use in the lap
Cons
  • Still heavy as a standalone tablet
  • Typing experience hasn't improved much
77 Engadget Score
A good product that falls short of greatness.
77

A good product that falls short of greatness.

How we score

The Engadget Score is a unique ranking of products based on extensive independent research and analysis by our expert editorial and research teams. The Global Score is arrived at only after curating hundreds, sometimes thousands of weighted data points (such as critic and user reviews).

Scores

Engadget

77
 

User Reviews

90
kilo23
The best in its category. We highly recommend it. - Engadget
90
lvl19
I love my Surface Pro 2, it lets me do so many things. Its very useful for indie...read more
100
eLPii
A gadget unicorn - Engadget
Write a Review

Score Breakdown

 
92
Average user Score
 
90
kilo23
06.01.15
The best in its category. We highly recommend it. - Engadget
 
90
lvl19
02.17.15
I love my Surface Pro 2, it lets me do so many things. Its very useful for indie devs. The pen input lets pixel artists draw and the portability allows for coding on the go.
 
100
eLPii
08.01.14
A gadget unicorn - Engadget
 
90
MrRichter
06.03.14
The best in its category. We highly recommend it. - Engadget
 
100
bessi
05.15.14
Its a laptop in the form of a tablet
 
90
iHero96
04.26.14
The best in its category. We highly recommend it. - Engadget
 
30
puterdude
04.23.14
I can only partially understand the rave reviews that users give this product. It must be due largely to the fact that most users are sick of carrying two devices - a heavy laptop and tablet which is overly limited in functionality. I bought and used the Surface Pro 2 8GB RAM/256GB SSD for a period of 3 weeks, and finally returned it. The problems I encountered in order of severity are:1. GLITCHY: I had delays and crashes with MSIE, File Explorer, Outlook, and Word. I had to turn off right and left swiping with the mouse because of eratic behavior caused by accidentally engaging the charms menu when editing documents (or do anything else, for that matter) with the keyboard. Miracast simply didn't work, and MS Support could not get it to work, either. Neither were they able to resolve the missing/broken OS features that I encountered. 2. UNCOMFORTABLE: As a laptop it´s too small, and as a tablet it doesn´t meet my needs. For example, it doesn´t have instant-on functionality (OK, it boots very quickly, but it´s not instant-on), or enough apps. Also the apps installed by default often duplicate, and are poor siblings of actual applications on the desktop. Not enough screen real estate to work comfortably for extended periods. Keyboard is too small, and quickly becomes a pain. The pen, which is fantastic with One-note, is also fundamental when working with Office applications because parts of the UI are so tiny you HAVE TO use the pen. Unfortunately, things like double clicking don´t come easy with the pen. I also found that the proximity of the X for closing the pop-up keyboard and the Backspace key on it caused problems from time to time. Unfortunately, there are many, many issues like this which mean that you have to learn to live with them for this to be a viable working platform for you.3. EXPENSIVE: It´s not expensive for the actual quality of the hardware. It´s expensive because it doesn´t provide enough bang for the buck. Also, if you want to use it as a laptop for work you´re going to have to buy lots and lots of peripherals - VGA connector, LAN connector, HDMI connector (if you travel a lot), and the touch keyboard, minimally. If you buy the battery keyboard, add another $200. (Does anyone know how many charges you can expect from that $200 keyboard? Also, there's a reason that they offer the battery keyboard. I didn't get close to the benchmarked battery time.) You have to buy MS Office separately, and you´ll need to buy a case. If you only get the case and touch keyboard you´re looking at $1550+. That´s not cheap for a core i5 device, by anyone´s standards. (OK, you get a touch screen, and the Haswell processor).For anyone who´s skeptical about this review, I did the following when I bought the device: upgraded the OS,and all the latest patches, via Windows update, installed MS Office and checked again for updates...and transferred my files to the new machine. Other applications that I installed were mainstream ones that work on my other laptop. I love the concept, and really, really wanted this to work for me. Oddly enough, I´m still tempted to go back and buy one - despite all the problems. But, that´s just it. I think I'm suffering from the same euphoria that is at the root of the rave user reviews. We've all been waiting for something just like what the Surface Pro 2 is supposed to be. BUT, IT´S NOT WHAT IT´S SUPPOSED TO BE. ...And, that´s the problem. So, I am forcing myself to be realistic in my rating, and give this a 3, which is what it truly deserves. My advice is to wait for the Surface Pro 3 or 4, when MS will finally have worked out the bugs.
 
80
StarfishHead
03.24.14
There's a lot to like about this in spite of a few flaws. - Engadget
 
90
mikeburroughs1
03.16.14
I bought the 256gb/8gb version at the Microsoft Store. The guy was a bit rude, but for the machine, I happily accepted it. It's the Wacom digitizer paired with the Intel chip that won me over. Essentially, it's a Centiq with less buttons and a much lower price, though you must download the Wacom driver if you want pressure sensitivity in programs outside of "Apps". All my Adobe apps (Fireworks, Dreamweaver, Photoshop, Illustrator, Audition) run flawlessly on it, though it depends on Intel integrated graphics, which can be a let-down if you want to use Mercury Playback Engine for rendering and such. I can't really comment on the App ecosystem. I've only downloaded one "app", and that's Netflix (it's a great app). Setup was really easy, too. I signed in and in about a minute, all the setting from when I played with the beta loaded. I was really surprised how many hours of customizing it saved me.There are three main things that irk me about this device though, and all are about accessories. 1) There is no place to put the pressure sensitive pen if you are docked or charging. Some people have suggested putting it on the bottom where the keyboard magnet is. This seems clunky. 2) There needs to be another magnet on the top corner of the device to keep the keyboard cover closed (think MacBook or any of the hundreds of laptops that do it, too). All that currently holds it is gravity. 3) Microsoft really can't fix this one, but there are no 3rd-party accessories for the Surface. No covers, keyboards, cases or anything unless Microsoft makes it, which is disappointing. Zune had the same issue later in it's life.I also found the first-party accessories to be really expensive. After dropping $1400 after tax on the device, I had to buy the $200 dock, the $130 keyboard cover, and $40 on a Mini-DisplayPort to HDMI adapter, which must be an MS adapter or it won't work. Need ethernet? $40 adapter. The most expensive one still only comes with the $30 pen. That said, Apple plays the same game, though sometimes (believe it or not) are a little cheaper.Make a long story short (too late), it's a great fullsize computer in a tablet form factor. They went after what a professional would look for in a tablet, and really One-Upped it. If you want a tablet with real programs and apps, you would be silly to not give this a look. And if you're afraid of upgrade-ability, most Apple laptops now suffer the same crippling disabilities without the benefit of this form factor.
 
100
caaarmel
03.05.14
A gadget unicorn - Engadget

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