Microsoft SQL Server Consultant reviews the Windows Surface Pro

Jon Cowling 05-Feb-2016 17:21:33

Microsoft SQL Server Consultant reviews the Windows Surface Pro

Our Microsoft Practice Head - Mark Jones who leads a team of Microsoft SQL Server constultants, recently got a Windows Surface Pro. Here are his thoughts on his latest purchase.

"So last week I decided to take the plunge and purchased myself a Windows Surface. dsp are happily supporting a bring your own Device (BYD) and due to the amount of travel I do, as a consultant head, I was tired of lugging about my corporate laptop.

I had seen and played with the Surface RT during some visits to Microsoft, and while I liked the portability, it lacked high end power and disk space I need for those days I have to deep dive.

The Surface Pro is now out and looked a lot beefier with a Core I5 processor and 128GB drive, which was expandable with a Micro SD card. The pro is heavy, at 9lbs it’s not a tablet to be used like an iPad. It’s more an ultra-mobile windows device. But with its kick stand you can save on the biceps while on train and it is pretty useable in the lap, although sometimes it can get a bit warm!

The screen is full HD, 10.8 inches and easy on the eyes, however is shiny and difficult to use in direct sunlight, although a matt screen protector has improved that immensely. The touchpad keyboard acts as a cover, typing device and opens up the portability of the device. I am not a fan of Island keyboards and it can take some getting used to, but the keyboard itself is responsive and actually very good.

The real pleasure in using the Surface comes from fully immersing yourself in the windows eco system. The magic glue being the SkyDrive, which has a copy of all my documents that I can access on my Nokia Lumia 920, and Windows 8 on my desktop. The user experience is pretty awesome and my eco system of business data is now pretty transparent across all these devices. Put it another way, one password and live ID account setup, and all my data is immediately available to me.

One note is excellent tool to take business notes and meetings, I can now do that on the fly with my phone, and it is immediately available for me on the Surface or desktop. Office syncs immediately to cloud storage. Personal and team groups on my phone means I can share data immediately with my team, family or friends.

The Surface is actually proven to be a real alternative to me to the laptop and while I am keeping both around at the moment, I haven’t booted it since the arrival of the Surface. Will that continue? Who knows, but in the meantime the Surface is winning that battle."