Microsoft Surface Lands… First Impressions.

So, the long awaited Microsoft Surface landed late this afternoon.

Yes, Microsoft are a little late to market but there seems to be a lot of sense in having devices which were developed by the same people that wrote the operating system on your computer, laptop and server.

Even on this RT version of the surface I have already been able to drag and drop files from my server to the desktop of my surface. This is just one example of something you can do with the Surface that you can’t do ‘out of the box’ with any iPad, iPhone, or Android based device.

It is still early days yet, but I have to say that I think the Surface has to be the tablet of choice for any of our Norfolk and Norwich based small business clients.

Some quick thoughts on the device itself:

Setup

Setup took just minutes. The email application painlessly connected to my hosted Microsoft Exchange server, and with the Windows Live ID I run it also connected to my Microsoft SkyDrive in just a few short keystrokes.

Keyboard

The keyboard is excellent. A decent size, easy to use and of course detachable in an instant. I am writing this blog on the surface and I am finding my typing accurate and quick.

Screen

I cannot fault the screen. The touchscreen is responsive and probably the best I’ve used, even when compared the Nokia Lumia. It’s bright, the resolution high and there’s no glare.

Speed

Given the hardware in the device is not comparable with, say, a laptop, the Surface is fast, responsive and stable. Of course you’ll not install the same weighty applications on a tablet as you might do a laptop so that responsiveness is not suprising.

Camera

The only thing I have noticed so far about the Surface is that the photographs taken by the on-board camera do seem grainy. They are not awful. Having said that, anybody that uses a tablet like this with the intention of taking photographs for the family album probably need their bumps reading.

Overall

First impressions are very positive for many different reasons…. I was initially sceptical about the Microsoft Surface being anything more that a gadget, but it’s tight integration with the other applications on your businesses network make the Microsoft Surface the tablet of choice for small businesses.