Microsoft Surface Pro 4 Is A Better Product Than The Surface Book

In October, Microsoft released the fourth version of the Surface Pro 4 and the first version of the Surface Book. The Pro 4 is meant to be a tablet that can also be used as a laptop. The Book is meant to be a laptop that can also be used as a tablet. However, after using both devices constantly for six weeks, it can be said that although the Surface Book is a groundbreaking device, the Pro 4 is not only a better buy, but just works a lot more smoothly.

Microsoft Surface Book The Surface Book is a unique device but feels like a Beta product. [Photo via Daryl Deino]Laptop gets it right by saying that the Surface Book is beautiful, blazing, and buggy. This is a solidly-built device with a beautiful 13.5-inch screen that’s not quite 4K, but close enough. The screen detaches from the solid keyboard and turns into a light tablet, although one that won’t last long because it runs on its own battery. The typing experience is great. So, where do things get complicated?

Even after a month and a half, the trackpad is still buggy. At times, especially when the processor is overloaded, it will not register clicks or taps. Tapping or clicking towards the middle of the trackpad produces better results, but one shouldn’t have to do this in order for their $2,000 device to work.

There have been consistent screen flickering issues that — at times — made the Surface Book unusable. However, Microsoft appears to have fixed the issue with the latest firmware update. Overall, the Surface Book is a joy to use, but it feels too much like a Beta version of a device that is eventually going to be groundbreaking.

One has to remember that when the Surface Pro came out, there were more problems than the Surface Book is having. Engadget was one of the first sources that talked about the original Surface Pro’s poor battery life back in February of 2013. By the time Microsoft released the Surface Pro 3 in June of 2014, they had a winner. Now, the Surface Pro 4 expands on those winning qualities.

The most important thing about the Surface Pro 4 is that it really can replace your laptop. You get the same productivity with the Surface Pro 4 that you get on the MacBook Air and even the MacBook Pro. Part of this is because the new Type Cover is built to perfection: The keys feel elastic, the touchpad feels smooth and slippery, and your hands feel very comfortable resting on the sides by the touchpad.

A lot of people say they aren’t comfortable using the Pro 4 because you can’t use it on your lap. That’s not true; if you put the Pro 4 on top of a 13-inch laptop case or book, it feels better than using a regular laptop on your lap. Typing blog posts and surfing the internet just feels so intuitive.

Surface Pro 4 i5 version Other than the battery life, the Surface Pro 4 is the perfect device. [Photo via Daryl Deino]The only slightly negative thing about the Pro 4 is the battery life. The Intel Core i7 version is not the type you can bring to work while leaving your charger at home. At most, the Pro 4 provides five hours of battery life when brightness is set to full and looping videos from Netflix with Wi-Fi. The average user will usually get about seven hours. If it was 2013, that wouldn’t be too bad. But this is almost 2016 and the new sixth generation Sklylake processors are supposed to help battery life.

Still, the Surface Pro 4 remains the best technology product on the market today. It’s more innovative than any iPhone and it’s more useful than any iPad or even MacBook. It’s even more useful than Microsoft’s own Surface Book. Microsoft has really hit a home run this year and, perhaps, they’ll hit a grand slam in 2016.

[Photo via Daryl Deino]