The Microsoft Surface Pro 3 & Me

I just finished the first week with my new Microsoft Surface Pro 3.    My goal was to replace my laptop AND my iPad with just one device.   So far, almost everything I have to report is good:

  • It’s incredibly light and easy to drag around.  I spent three days this week at Sage Summit, walking around the trade show floor with my Surface under my arm.  No problem.  Periodically I’d sit down on a bench, pop it open, and start emailing or checking out a website. There’s no way I could have done this with my old Dell Laptop.
  • It goes on right away, just like an iPad.   Gone is the frustration I had when booting up my old Dell, and it would take 5-10 minutes starting up.   When I open up the Surface, it’s just…you know…ON.
  • Being able to switch back and forth between laptop mode and iPad mode (that’s what I’m calling it) is really easy and efficient.
  • It’s just plain fast.   Word and Excel open so fast, I’m not even ready for them when they pop open.   I used to have 10-15 seconds to plan out what I was going to do.   Not anymore. SugarCRM pops and runs faster than on my desktop.
  • Surprisingly, installing a VPN and remote desktop was easy.   I’m now able to run applications like Sage 100 ERP (MAS90) on the device.   Amazing to see Sage 100 running on something that looks like an iPad.
  • Having multiple keyboard options is cool.  I can type on the Surface Cover that doubles as a keyboard, or I can use the keyboard that pops up on the Surface screen, or I can just touch the screen.    That’s pretty cool.   One time, the mouse seemed to be frozen (?), so all I did was touch the screen in a few key places and I was able to finish up what I was doing.  “Freezing” doesn’t seem to be an issue anymore.

The only significant complaint I have so far is about the mousepad built into the keyboard.   It’s flaky and shaky at times, and it can be really difficult to click on things if the clickable area is small.   In addition, right clicking with the mouse pad is more of an art than a science.   It’s sort of somewhere down in the bottom right hand corner of the area, but sometimes I just can’t find it.   I’m starting to develop carpel tunnel in my mouse fingers and wrist from the stress.   I’ve also sent a bunch of emails that weren’t meant to be sent because of faulty clicking.   If you got one of those, I apologize J

I also need to say that the Surface ecosystem out in the world is way more flushed out than I would have thought.   Every time I’ve had a user interface question and Googled it, multiple (correct) answers came up and I was able to solve the issue and move on quickly.

The bottom line is that with the Surface Pro, so far at least, I feel like I’m more mobile than I’ve ever been.   Stay tuned…I’ll keep this updated with more feedback as I experience more….

– David