part of the future of Surface (concept)
This concept is really two in one, but neither is fully developed. I am just trying to create a vision for how I think Microsoft's Surface line can expand in the future. Disclaimer: much of the design work isn't mine; I just combined and changed elements from others until they fit my vision, with a few things added.
Now, here is my simple concept image for the Surface Desk, a Windows 8 all-in-one PC. Just click to see it bigger.
It is light enough to take around the house for mobility in entertainment, but is powerful enough to fit all of your working needs. It could come in anywhere from 15 to 21 inches in size. The kickstand works in the same way as current Surface models, with the exception that the tablet can be turned upside down for a lower angle option, explained below.
With some creative engineering, I am sure Microsoft could get the kickstand on the Surface to work when you turn the device upside down, effectively erasing the complaints about no options for multiple angles when using the stand. You could use it in an upright position or closer to a flat position, or just close the kickstand and go completely flat. I realize that this takes away the advantage of using a Touch or Type Cover, but that won't be as important for an all-in-one tablet.
Combined with the Surface Pen (purchased alone), this low-angle arrangement could be incredible for graphic designers or architects whose work would be complemented by a large screen, an accurate drawing or pointing device, and an ideal software and hardware setup.
This device could simply be bundled with a Microsoft keyboard and mouse, preferably the Touch Mouse (if you ask me). The Touch Mouse could even come in the same cyan, red, magenta, black, or white colors as the Touch Cover.
I guess I will do another post about the second concept, which is the Office file-picker on the Surface's screen. Suffice it to say I have ideas about how Office could work in a metro environment.
Let me talk a bit about the model for this concept. Recently, Dell announced a new device that is essentially an 18 inch tablet running Windows 8, shown above and below. Check out some more pictures and an overview here. To be sure, I had many of these ideas before I knew about the XPS 18, but this tablet provided an excellent vision for where Windows tablets can go in the future. In particular, the way the kickstand is implemented is similar to ideas I had for the Surface.
Any constructive criticism would be appreciated, including for the name. I'm not really happy with "Surface Desk".