This tablet hardware doesn’t just compete with the iPad – it bypasses the iPad in many ways that are significant and valuable for me.
I plugged in my USB presentation remote and it just worked.
I plugged in a 64GB micro SD card with all my presentations and files and it just worked.
So far, so good. But wait!
I popped out the kickstand and started typing and it just worked. Well, almost – if there’s one significant compromise in the Surface RT, it’s the kickstand. You get two and only two positions for the kickstand: open and closed. There’s no adjustments. I think the kickstand angle was designed for airplane use by short people, because the screen hardly goes back at all. It’s probably perfect for Danny DeVito when he puts it on the seat back tray in coach class, but for me on a desk, it’s too steep.
The built-in front-facing camera for Skype is angled so that it’ll work great when the kickstand is open, but again, only for Danny DeVito, or maybe for people who want to show off their chests in Skype.
Microsoft has taken the spec sheet approach to hardware design. Adding a kick stand is good, because you can put it on the spec sheet and that’s another plus point. But it’s basically unusable (unless you’re vertically challenged), which reduces it from a plus point to a meaningless feature.