As leaders in our organizations for leveraging web technology for business value, staying abreast of the devices used to consume our development is crucial. Much of the development has centered around development for the popular Apple iPad/iPhone. However Microsoft Windows is still the mainstay OS in business. So it’s important to stay abreast of the new devices for this OS as we plan for web application development as well.
A major shift with the release of Microsoft Windows 8 is a heavy focus on touch/mobile use vs desktop/laptop use. But instead of doing a full spectrum review of all the new Windows 8 muti-function tablets, I thought it would be more instructive to look at a representative example from the high-end and the low-end multi-function tablets designed for full Windows 8 use. Understanding the capabilities/limitations are useful as web development is considered.
Looking at the new platforms
In my opinion a good representative of the low end of the multi-function tablet is the HP Envy X2.
This device is a full featured table, but docks to a keyboard with ports and with its own battery, giving this device exemplary battery life. However to achieve this battery life, performance is sacrificed by relying upon the Atom CPU. But the form and function are well done and the device is quite usable. If your organization is standardizing on this tablet, application development must be optimized in light of its slower CPU.
For the high end, Microsoft’s own Surface Pro is the standard (reviewed in an earlier post). However there are, what I believe, other good choices in the high end category as well. A good contender in this category is the Samsung Smart PC Pro 700T. This is an Intel iCore5 powerhouse, and can capably handle full Windows 8 applications. Any of the multi-function tablets in this category are excellent choices for heavy duty Windows 8 use. The trade-off is battery life, a serious consideration for your mobile Sales force who will be using your applications.
Comparing the Specs
|PC||Price||Resolution||Touch Points||CPU||Flash Memory||RAM||Display||Weight||keyboard weight||optional keyboard base||Rear Camera|
|HP Envy X2||$700||1366×768||5||32 bit Atom Z2760||64 GB||2GB||11.6″||700g||n/a||n/a||8MP|
|Samsung Smart PC Pro 700T||$1,200||1920×1080||10||Core i5||128GB||4GB||11.6″||906g||720g||$150||5MP|
Below are good concise reviews from CNET on these new multi-function tablets
- HP Envy X2 – CNET video review
- Samsung Smart PC Pro 700T – CNET video review
- And for comparison, Microsoft Surface Pro – CNET video reivew