More big announcements this week!
Just before Christmas, I officially became a Microsoft Ambassador. I was pretty stoked about this. First off, I use MS Office every day. I have written my book on Word, and I use Excel for all my accounting and database stuff. I use PowerPoint for all my BCIT teaching. Basically, it’s a suite that is embedded deeply into my life.
As many of you know, I’m a pretty hardcore Mac girl. I have an iPhone, an iPad, and I work off of a MacBook Pro. I have done for probably 6 or 7 years, now, and I have a hard time thinking of another way to do my business.
But I gotta be honest here: I’m not super happy with all the “updates” that Apple has been making to their hardware. Ports are disappearing. Cables are changing. And I don’t like it. I don’t want to buy a phone without a headphone jack, and my life and business require an SD card slot.
So. When it comes time to upgrade, will I upgrade to another Mac? or will I go PC?
One of the perks of being a Microsoft Ambassador is that I get to test out some of their hardware, and it’s starting with the Surface Pro 4. This bad boy arrived in the mail on New Year’s Eve, and boy was I stoked!! You can watch my unboxing video here.
I’ve now had a chance to play with the Surface for a couple of weeks, and I wanted to share with you my initial reactions.
Powerrrrr! This baby is fast! I was working on a big chapter in my book, and it kept crashing my macbook. I was able to work on it without problem on the Surface, though. It literally saved my (vegan) bacon.
Transformer computer. The surface is a tablet, but it’s also an entire computer, and it seamlessly transforms between both. I use it at my desk as a computer, but I love to take it out, as well. It’s great in coffee shops, because it’s so light. Much more portable than my Macbook Pro, but about the same sized screen. I also take the keyboard off and use it as a tablet both in bed to watch Netflix, and also to do research on for blog posts (more about that later). The keyboard works great–I was a bit concerned at first, because it seems a little flimsy, but it seems to be holding up to my key-pounding just fine. It can also lay flat for typing, or you can angle it (which is my preference). Everything is magnetized, and the transformation from laptop to tablet and back again is easy-peasy.
Stylus. The Surface comes with a stylus that magnetically attaches itself to the monitor. It’s a really cool feature. It allows you to write, draw, make notes, and then you can email them to yourself or store them to One Note. And–I know this sounds weird coming from a girl who can’t think properly without a keyboard under her fingers, but I love this feature. There’s something so old school about making notes with the stylus on the tablet. I really love it. It taps into a creative part of my brain that I maybe don’t always have access to while typing.
Windows 10. The Surface comes equipped with Windows 10 and Cortana (their answer to siri). I’m new to this operating system so I don’t have ton to say about it right now, but I do like the tiled shortcut/delivery system, which allows me to customize my desktop experience.
Okay. So lots to like. What didn’t I like? Well, there was one thing. I have a habit… admittedly a bad one… of working in bed. I get up, I get coffee and my computer, and I go back to bed and write on my laptop for a few hours. Yes, yes, I know, it’s bad. Posture, etc.. I shouldn’t do it, but I do. I found that the Surface is not as comfortable for this kind of working. It works great by itself, without the keyboard, for watching Netflix in bed, but less successful for writing. Maybe it’s just as well?
So those are my initial thoughts on the Surface Pro 4. I’ll be back with a few more posts in the future, as I use it more and play around with it.
Meanwhile, over to you. Have you tried the Surface Pro? I’d love to hear your experiences in the comments section below.