No matter what Microsoft says, Surface Pro is not a laptop — it's a tablet
Microsoft calls its new Surface Pro "the most versatile laptop," a description I thoroughly disagree with. The Surface Pro is not a laptop ... it's a tablet.
Microsoft's Surface Pro comes bundled with an interesting slogan. No longer is it, "the tablet that can replace your laptop," now it's "the most versatile laptop." I wholeheartedly disagree with Microsoft calling the Surface Pro a laptop, regardless of whether it's calling the device a "versatile laptop."
Microsoft's original tagline for the Surface Pro 4 was honest and straightforward. It explained to whoever is reading it that the Surface Pro 4 is a tablet, but it's such a "versatile tablet" that it can also be a laptop. This explanation makes the most sense, especially when you consider the fact that the Surface Pro doesn't even come bundled with a Type Cover. You have to buy that separately.
If the Surface Pro came bundled with a Type Cover, I'd be willing to let the new slogan slide. But the fact of the matter is when your average Joe goes out to buy a Surface Pro, he's buying a tablet. Only once he realizes that the "laptop" part is an additional extra will he turn that tablet into something that can be used just like a laptop.
The new Surface Pro's slogan is essentially the reverse of what the Surface Pro 4 slogan was. Now Microsoft is calling the Surface Pro a "versatile laptop," which insinuates that it's a laptop first and foremost. The Surface Pro is a tablet before anything else, so that's what Microsoft should call.
Three laptops and an all-in-one
Microsoft calling the Surface Pro a laptop also confuses what the Surface family has to offer too. Microsoft now has four consumer-facing Surface products on the market: the Surface Pro, Surface Laptop, Surface Book and Surface Studio. Microsoft's calls the Surface Pro, Laptop and Book laptops, and the Surface Studio a desktop.
In reality, Microsoft's new Surface family is way more than that. Microsoft offers a tablet, a laptop, a 2-in-1 PC and a desktop in its Surface lineup, not three laptops and a desktop. Why offer general consumers the choice between three very different and distinct laptops? That just confuses the problem altogether. It would make more sense for Microsoft to further differentiate its lineup.
If Microsoft were to market its products as they actually are, I think Microsoft could reach a much wider audience in its marketing materials. A tablet that can be a laptop, a pure laptop, a 2-in-1 that's a pretty good laptop, and a desktop that's just awesome.
Microsoft calling the new Surface Pro a laptop is probably due to a bunch of market research the company did when deciding on how to sell the Surface Pro, but that doesn't make it accurate. No matter how you put it, the Surface Pro is not a laptop. It's a tablet that has an optional keyboard accessory that allows you to use it like a laptop.
Microsoft's new Surface Pro slogan should be "The most versatile tablet." Or the company should have stuck with the Surface Pro 4 slogan of "The tablet that can replace your laptop," which I like much more. That older slogan was a bold statement. The new slogan is just wrong.
What are your thoughts on the new Surface Pro slogan? Let us know in the comments.
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Zac Bowden is a Senior Editor at Windows Central. Bringing you exclusive coverage into the world of Windows on PCs, tablets, phones, and more. Also an avid collector of rare Microsoft prototype devices! Keep in touch on Twitter: @zacbowden.
#3: if the Surface Pro can 100% replace the need for a laptop/desktop is another discussion, nice if thats a yes for you though.
So, Apple's tablet run a kids OS while the Mac's run a full OS. BUT Surface tablets AND laptops all run a full desktop OS.
You remove the keyboard part, and keep the display part, it still works, then it's a tablet.
You remove the display part, keep the keyboard part, it still works, it's a laptop.
2) Besides that Alienwares are more powerful, what are the differences between Surface Pros and Alienwares?
Second, in consumers mind, the tablet comes with mobile OS.
How about snapping window? all the shortcut keys? menu key? multi-tasking? more-keyboard-user-friendly?
But many times... it's inefficient if you know what you are doing or if you are a power user. Hence, not user-friendly, I introduced Nexus to my wife and she can't go back to iOS anymore. * How do you close your Notification panel in iOS? You'd have to move you finger all the way down, from the topmost to the bottom most, then swipe up? Time consuming... how is it friendly? * No common share api. Sharing an image from Google Photo and Apple Photo, why the different apps in the "Activity" list? * how do you perform ctrl+a/x/c/v from your virtual keyboard? * Can you directly scroll your textfield / inputfield if the text is too long? "Address Bar" for instance, in iOS, you'd have to use "Input Caret" to scroll... * How do you go back to previous app after launching another app through current app (e.g. Messenger from Facebook or Browser from url)? In Android, single tap "Back Button". In iOS... etc, etc
The same way a phone running a full desktop Windows 10 with keyboard+mouse+external display connected would be still just a phone.
Does everything that laptop does and much more.
It's clever marketing on Microsoft side. Don't include the keyboard so can lower the price point.
Stop moaning and celebrate the marvel engineering device. Still the best combo of tablet/laptop money can buy!
Built-in keyboard: laptop Even including a removable one in the package does not qualify the device to be a laptop, and as far as I can tell that's not even the case.
I'm not hung up in the marketing. I'm hung up with how people ACTUALLY use it in real life. If you see someone with a Surface, ask them how often they use it as a tablet. I'd bet its 98 of the time.
A similar argument can be applied to the surface book as well - I mostly use it in tablet mode and for notes.
It's not like there is an IEEE standard definition of what a laptop is or should be; it is all 'convention' that we have sort of accepted over time due to the hitherto stagnation in design evolution of this category. Is the standard non-removable clamshell form-factor the proper or 'true' definition of a laptop? Who says so? So what is the surface book then? Afterall, it is a clamshell AND has a bonafide removable screen. Does that make the surface book not a true laptop? Is it the rigidity of the detachable keyboard that differentiates the surface book from the surface pro? So MS can argue that it is possible functions rather than form that determines what a laptop is.
What I can tell you is that everyone I know who has a surface pro (including myself) has either sold their traditional laptop or does not use the laptop again. This is highly indicative of the fact that in essence, it is a laptop since it indeed replaces the former traditional laptop.
I think MS is on the right track with this message. Get a surface pro and I bet you won't bother with your traditional laptop anymore.
For me it doesn't matter how Zac calls it. Most important is that Surface Pro is superior to iPad and MacBook together.
If you refer to it as a tablet, you talk about external look.
If you refer to it as a laptop, you talk about its internals.