iPad Mini - almost everything I wanted from Surface
A couple of month back I got a MS Surface. After 3 weeks I decided to sell it. You can read the story behind it here
I sold it and my old Macbook (which I used Windows on) to buy an Ultrabook. In the end I actually bought a Macbook AIr while I was buying my wife an iPad mini but that's another story. I decided I would wait until MS brought out a 7 inch Surface/X-PAd or whatever before trying a tablet again.
My wife got fed up with me using her mini as a couch-surfing toy, she decided to buy me one for Xmas . At first I was mildly annoyed as she knew I was going to wait. She also happened to mention she would like me to get into iOS app development to do some stuff for her school!
Having really used it and set it up for me, I am very, very impressed with it.
The main thing is the convenience factor - it is so light and easy to pick up and hold, it is instant on and it hasn't needed charged yet (since starting Tuesday night).
I can only think of a few disadvantages in "couch surfer" use compared to the Surface and they are the app switching which is clumsy compared to the surface (four finger swipe???) and the search screen which is pointlessly limited (why cant you search internet from there?). The ability to read from SD cards would be good but at least stuff on my iTunes library on my desktop PC shows on the iPad's library when I am connected by wifi. On the surface stuff on the SD card didn't even show in the video library.
How about Surface's much vaunted "Office" mode? Well, to be honest I thought it sucked on the Surface because it required going to netbook mode and suffered memory problems. The mini doesn't really pretend to be aiming for that market but the viewers work well and I have bought Pages to try it. Although you aren't going to write War and Peace on it, it is fine for banging out short letters and the like. The fact that you can use Siri to dictate it makes it a lot more useful (it even copes with my strong Sheffield accent). I only discovered Surface had the old Windows voice recognition after I sold it.
As I said, I primarily bought the Surface as a couch-surfer but I did have a few thoughts on using it for work (I do web and app design) but that lasted about as long as it took to find the total lack of suitable apps on the Windows store. I couldnt even find a simple FTP program!
Contrast this to the Apple store where there are dozens of developer tools and, as I am trying Coda on my MBA, I have just bought Diet Coda. It is a shame they are not allowed to do trial versions on Apple's store but it was only £14 and I had some iTunes vouchers. Again, You aren't going to be designing huge sites on it but for on-the go fixes it looks great
Oh. maybe one other Surface feature would be good - Snap View so I can have Letterpress up while doing other things - the wife is addicted to it. On the other hand, there is always "Do not disturb"!