I’ve broken my track record of one laptop per year. No, I did not lengthen the cycle, I shortened it. This is not the plan going forward – I hope! I was not planning on getting anything new, I was waiting for the Microsoft Surface 2 to be released and eventually come down in price. The Surface is a great device for somebody like me: an academic professional whose job mainly consists on MS Office work that is used for teaching/grading. All the fun stuff I do in this device is Hulu/Netflix, that’s about it, because let’s be honest: there is no respectable gaming mobile device. Gaming is done in the desktop, period. Everything else is a joke.
So I sold my Asus VivoTab RT and got myself not a Surface 2, but the original Surface since it is no longer outrageously overpriced at $600 and got the tablet plus the tactile touch-cover, all for $340 factory refurbished from eBay. Great deal – and I already have friends who want to buy it from me next year because, let’s face it, I’m obviously going to buy a new hybrid when that time comes. The Tegra 3 ARM SoC CPU works like a charm, it’s not the fastest around but it’s fast enough (which is why the Surface 2 isn’t attractive to me, because Tegra 4 doesn’t have that noticeable an improvement in performance to warrant spending the extra cash). Apps will load in 2/3 seconds instead of the 1 second it would take on Surface 2 or the latest iPad Air: I really can live waiting 3 seconds for an app to load, it’s really not a problem (#firstworldproblems). I use Surface to teach all my classes with pictures, PDFs and PowerPoints just like I did with the VivoTab, but now I look much cooler doing it :D. Surface feels great, is sturdy, has a beautiful screen and is an overall fantastic device, specially since the Windows 8.1 update. I’m looking forward to replacing this one next year with the sure-to-come Surface 3 (which will be based on Tegra 5 that will use a 64bit ARM v8 instruction set paired with a Kepler GPU architecture, now that is what I’m talking about) but for now, the Surface 1 is a fantastic little machine for work and play to complete the latest iteration of my laptop history (I might have to rethink the title of this evolution, since these are no longer laptops, but hybrids).