2This Is a Windows World
Why might the Surface 2 be a winner? Blame it on Windows. Like it or not, Windows is the software standard around the world, and for those who need a high-end, desktop-like computing experience, the Surface 2 tablet’s Windows integration is important. Granted, the original Surface wasn’t very popular. But Delta Air Lines’ recent announcement that it was buying 11,000 Surface 2 devices, along with purchases disclosed by other companies, indicates that corporate adoption isn’t as much of an issue this time around.
3The Screen Is Truly Gorgeous
One of the big improvements to the Surface 2 was Microsoft’s inclusion of 1080p HD. The Surface 2’s screen is still 10.6 inches, but with full-HD resolution, the device is capable of producing extremely high-res visuals. With 4K coming down the pike, 1080p might not look as gorgeous in the next few years, but for now, it’s the best we can hope for from a screen.
4Windows 8.1: An Important Step Forward
Microsoft learned from its mistakes with Windows 8 and delivered in Windows 8.1 a dramatically improved operating system. The company’s new software is both more functional and feature-rich, and with the return of the Start button, will help in getting veteran Windows users to accept the new platform. Windows 8.1 will add another slice of usability to the Surface 2 that customers will like.
5Extra Cloud Storage Is Helpful
Who can argue with Microsoft’s decision to offer 200GB of free cloud-based storage with the Surface 2? Upon booting up the machine, owners can sign up for Microsoft’s SkyDrive and get access to all of that additional space. Much has been made about tablets not coming with enough on-board storage, but Microsoft solves that issue with SkyDrive. It’s a nice touch.
6Skype Integration Was a Smart Move
Microsoft’s Skype acquisition is turning out to be one of the best moves the company has made in a long time. With Skype’s help, Microsoft is able to bundle full voice over IP (VoIP) calling into the Surface 2, as well as free messaging and full integration across the operating system. Skype calls can even be made from the lock screen in the Surface 2. Skype could be the secret ingredient that helps Windows 8.1 and the Surface grow.
7Options for Novices and Professionals
One of the smart things Microsoft did with its Surface line is to appeal to both casual Windows users and those who need a higher-end experience. The Surface RT 2 is designed for those casual users who simply want to search the Web, access media and push out Office documents. Professionals will find more to like in the Surface Pro 2.
8A High but Understandable Price
At $500 to start, the Surface 2 is by no means a cheap product. And when that same price tag was affixed to the original Surface, those who didn’t see the value in Microsoft’s product viewed it as extremely high. The Surface 2, however, comes with better components and an overall better experience than its predecessor. Add that to the high-end display and 200GB of cloud storage, and it’s conceivable that people would want to spend cash on Microsoft’s device.
9Do the Accessories Actually Work Out?
Microsoft has gone a bit accessory-happy with the Surface 2, but the company’s main add-ons—a backlit Touch Cover 2 and kickstand—are actually quite appealing to customers. Microsoft’s special mouse or the car charger, like countless other products the company is pushing, might not appeal to everybody, but the basic package is appealing.
10An Enterprise Workhorse
The corporate world will like what it finds in the Surface Pro 2. The device comes with an Intel Core i5 processor, providing the same performance as a midrange laptop. Plus, it has 512GB of flash storage and the aforementioned covers that double as keyboards. One other great improvement is USB 3.0. Overall, the Surface Pro 2 seems to be one appealing product for enterprise users.
11It’s the Microsoft Junkie That Loves the Surface
Can the Surface 2 ever expect to match the iPad in total sales? Of course not. But the device could be successful if Microsoft can tap into its loyal (and still quite large) legion of fans that have stuck by it through its most difficult times. The Surface 2 won’t be a sales juggernaut, but if Microsoft can rally its customer base, the device could do surprisingly well in the market.