Top positive review
318 people found this helpful
Exceeded my expectations
on February 15, 2013
First of all, there's already been enough positive reviews that cite the strengths of this tablet. And with the 5 stars I am giving this tablet, you can guess that I am happy with this tablet. So, this review is more a response to people's criticisms of the tablet.
Before I continue, here is a list of tablets that I have owned. This list is to show that I know what to look for in a tablet.
Ipads 1 and 2
Samsung Galaxy tab 1 and 2
Asus TF101, SL101, TF201, TF700T, and TF600T
So, as you can see I am well aware of what to look for in a tablet. I have not touched my laptop for nearly two years because the TF700 has fulfilled my work needs while on the go. I bought the TF600 (vivotab rt) with the intention of replacing my TF700.
So, here are some complaints that I've seen about the vivotab and why I think the complaints are not legit.
(1) Keyboard is too small to type.
Of all the complaints about this tablet, I think this is the most bogus. Yes, it is small, but if you can't type on anything that is slightly smaller than the full size desktop keyboard, then don't get a 10 inch device. The keyboard is 97% the size of a full size keyboard, so it's not that much smaller. I am typing full speed on this keyboard, and I have fairly large hands. I've not noticed any discomfort at all. If you find yourself unable to type full speed with a keyboard it that is 97% the size of a regular keyboard, then just get a full size laptop.
(2) The trackpad is too sensitive, making it too easy to accidentally touch and change the place of the typing cursor.
It took me a whole 5 seconds (if that) to find a way to disable the trackpad. Hint: fn+f9.
(3) The screen is not HD enough.
First of all, this is a full HD screen. It's not as high def as the asus infinity or the ipad 3, but it is plenty clear. You will only notice a difference between this screen and the infinity or the ipad 3 if you put your face up against the screen and try to look for the pixels. The screen is more than capable to play 1080p movies.
(4) Windows rt does not have enough apps.
As it stands, windows rt has about 5,000 apps. When iOS first launched, apple's appstore had 0 apps. When Android first launched, it had 700 apps. Windows rt launched with 5,000 apps.
As you go through the apps, you will notice that many of the apps (games) you love are not on the windows rt app store. I agree that this is a drawback. More on this at the end of this review.
(5) Windows rt interface is too hard to adapt to.
I don't understand what's so hard about the UI in windows 8/rt? Swipe from the right to get options like search, menu, control, start, etc. Swipe from the left to get the previous app or to dock the previous app and get split screen. Swipe from the bottom or top to get app specific menu and options. That's it. For me, there was no learning curve at all. And I'm a civil engineer, not some tech wiz.
(6) Speakers are in the back.
Where else would they be? This is a very thin device. Thinner than any ipad. Thinner than anything else on the market. If you have a device this thin, the speakers would either be in the front or the back. The front is out of the question. There's nothing there but glass. For those complaining about this, you should get an ipad. Oh wait, the ipad's speaker (singular, no stereo) is in the back as well. If you think you can come up with a better design, why don't you build us the perfect tablet with better positioned speakers?
(7) The device feels cheap.
How? The casing is made of brushed aluminum. The whole tablet is one piece of aluminum connected to rubberized plastic and glass. How is this cheap? To me, it looks and feels very solid and very well designed and assembled. It also is the thinnest device on the market. How is this cheap?
(8) The plastic strip is too big and has no purpose.
Yes, the rubberized plastic strip on top of the back of the device has a purpose. Asus redesigned the docking clams to make it possible for us to undock the tablet while the netbook form is still closed. You couldn't do this in any other transformer series device. The rubberized plastic strip is there to make it easier for us to reach into our bag and just undock and pull out the tablet. To me, this redesign is godsend. For my job, I travel a lot and use my tablet to write up reports. I have to regularly pull out my tablet to pull up a digitized document or manual to survey the area job sites. If you don't like how it looked, just buy a skinomi techskin and put it over the back of your tablet.
Now, here are some strengths that I've found about the tablet compared to the previous model the TF700. The whole setup feels a lot more solid. I can't really describe it well in words. You just have to put your hands on one to know what I mean. Asus engineers have also solved the balancing issue. In the TF101, TF201, Tf300, and TF700, the netbook form had a balancing issue. The tablet portion was a bit heavier than the docking station so that if you put a little pressure on the screen the whole setup would fall backward. I'm sure you've seen this in video reviews of previous models.
In the TF600, asus engineers have redistributed the weights toward the joints in the middle making the whole netbook form a lot more stable. You can now push all you want on the screen and it would not fall backward. In fact, you could hold the setup up to 45 degrees backward and release and the tablet would still fall forward and stand straight up.
Now, going back to the windows rt weakness, which is the number of apps. Yes, I agree that there are only 5,000 apps right now versus 700,000+ apps in the android market. Think about the following.
(1) How many apps do you have installed on your current device? Do you have 5,000 apps installed?
(2) Have you ever been taught that quality is more valuable than quantity?
The windows 8/rt is a new ecosystem. It will undoubtedly get more apps just like how android started out with 700 apps and now there are hundreds of thousands of apps. But here's the thing. Both the iOS and android ecosystems are now supersaturated with crap apps. It really amazes me how many useless apps there are in there. I'm not saying that's a bad thing. I'm saying just looking at the numbers alone is deceptive.
Windows RT is a full operating system. It is the smoothest and best experience you will ever have on a tablet UI. Compared to the ipad and the TF700, the vivotab rt feels so much faster and much more satisfying. When you do a swipe with your finger on the ipad and the asus infinity, there is always a slight delay that everyone's gotten used to. The vivotab rt, on the other hand, has no delay. It is an amazing experience to see the screen following your finger with no delay at all. You just have to play with one to feel the difference. Don't take my word for it. Go to the local best buy or staples and play around with the display unit. You will see what I mean.
After having used my new vivotab RT, I've been unable to go back to my asus infinity. Even my ipad feels slow and sluggish compared to the vivotab RT. Again, don't take my word for it. Get your hands on these tablets and compare them for yourself. You'll see what I mean.
Don't worry about the number of apps and the app choices. They are increasing by the minute. I've already noticed a lot of app choices this week that I didn't see last month. App developers are racing to put their apps in the Microsoft app store.
In short, the iOS and android are built with only gaming experience in mind. You'd be hard pressed to create and be productive with those OSes. And most tech reviewers would agree with me on that. Windows RT is made with both gaming and productivity in mind. The split screen alone on the vivotab RT makes my job so much better than before. And with battery life that lasts the whole day, I can go through the whole day without having to think about plugging in my device.
For the doubters, just get your hands on one and try it out. You won't regret it. Trust me.