Why is there an obsession to remove choice?
Ok so ive just bee watching the vergecast and have heard for the umpteenth time that Microsoft should not have made attempts to make hybrid devices and that metro should have been made purely for tablet, maintaining the desktop only for desktops. Editors also seem to have no time for hybrid computing in general. Over and over again we have heard that the perfect new pc design in the yoga...which is a laptop. These sentiments lack vision. (please note I am discussing x86 only)
Since buying several windows 8 hybrids my ipad and android tablets have been collecting dust. The ability of my vivotab 810c to go from a laptop to a tablet is simply amazing. Having access to the desktop gives me access to a world of fantastically designed productivity apps for when I need to work (I am a statistics student) and the metro world is great for media consumption. Each environment brings with it advantages which let me use the hybrid in a different way. It's not just a work laptop. It's not just a walled off tablet. Leveraging both metro and the desktop the hybrid becomes more than the sum of its parts. It becomes a convenient device to use.
The surface pro, with a usb 3.0 dock, is a great single device to rule them all. Ive placed my desktop and laptop into storage since the purchase. Much like the atom tab it's both a great device for sitting in bed browsing the verge and for sitting at my desk crunching numbers. Admittedly a keyboard hybrid dock would vastly improve the experience (ive not found the covers remotely useful). However, I cant stress enough how good it is to not have to worry about having to move to a separate device when I want to lounge or work. I know that no matter the situation the device that i'm using will be enough. In any situation I am just a click (or touch) away from all of my work, most of which cannot be simply stored on a google docs form. In a way, to me, that is a "no compromise" solution.
These two devices ive kept seem to give a good overview of where windows is. It is an excellent experience, superior in many ways to ios. Yes there are flaws and they should not be excused but those flaws relate mainly to application ui design guidelines and a general lack of well made metro apps. Fortunately many of the 1st party apps are redesigned and expanded in 8.1 so things look bright for the future. As a more general note 8.1 seems to improve metro for non touch scenarios. I have used IOS extensively since the original ipad was released and I can see nothing in it that makes it the more preferable os to use.
It's become clear to me that the perfect form factor is a hybrid: a tablet with a detachable keyboard dock (like the helix). The fact that the dock is baggage when detached is not an issue. If you have a tablet on you then will also have some sort of bag on you. When have you seen people carrying computers and tablets about without some sort of case?
Again having both the desktop and metro available in the one device is a huge selling point to me. Particularly so for core based devices. I can understand that people have different experiences with devices but I also feel that tech editors have a disproportionate influence on the direction on the direction of the market. I could imagine nothing worse than for Microsoft to abandon the hybrid device strategy. So you can imagine that I get very annoyed by the whole surface laptop or stripped down tablet ideas.
You may believe that the majority of users will absolutely reject the hybrid paradigm but at this point that seems conjecture. Ive heard nothing but positive reviews from fellow students who pick up hybrids (the envy X2 seems to be a favourite). The disconnect between desktop and metro seems a non issue.
Why should we limit our computers' software because of its' form factor? Why cant we have the desktop as a value added addition? Shouldn't computers be about letting us do what we want in the way that we find easiest, rather than the way some company wants or finds most profitable?
The hybrid device seems to be the future. So the question remains, cognizant or not, why so much distain?
rant end /