Companion Device for Surface Pro 3?

Discussion in 'Microsoft' started by dstrauss, Jul 18, 2014.

  1. dstrauss

    dstrauss Comic Relief Senior Member

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    As you guys know, for some time I've been advocating a phablet to ride shotgun with my Surface Pro 3 - seems that Lenovo may be thinking similar thoughts as they discontinue 8" sales in North America - per Paul Thurrott:

    Lenovo kills off Windows mini-tablets in the US

    A Lenovo spokesperson has confirmed that the world's largest PC maker has stopped selling its Windows 8.1-based mini-tablets, the ThinkPad 8 and Miix 2, in the United States. "In North America, we're seeing stronger interest in the larger screen sizes for Windows tablets and are pleased with initial customer demand for the ThinkPad 10," the firm told PC World. It also noted that these tablets are doing well in other markets, like Brazil, China and Japan. Oddly, this news sort-of corresponds to a weird shift in tablet sales, from mini-tablets back to full-sized tablets, which occurred earlier this year. And it has me wondering whether the phablet has killed the mini-tablet market in established economies. It doesn't help that Microsoft doesn't exactly have a compelling tablet story, either, as I noted in WPC 2014: Microsoft's Android Counterattack.


    To me, it looks like a three way horse race between the upcoming iPhone 6x (5.5" model), Galaxy Note 4, and Lumia 1520. I have to say, I NEVER thought I'd see a phablet that could make the Galaxy Note 3 look svelte, but the Lumia 1520 I checked out at AT&T last night is frighteningly large. Although I crave a larger screen to replace my aging iPhone 5, the Lumia 1520, despite its gorgeous screen and awesome camera, is just too much BEAST.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 18, 2015
  2. mgerbasio

    mgerbasio Scribbler - Standard Member

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    I wanted a 7-8" tablet and I looked at both Thinkpads as Thinkpads were my PC preference. There wasn't a compelling reason to purchase either one over the Asus VivoTab Note 8 which was my choice. I think Lenovo could have done better with this segment of the market.

    Having a device that fits in my back pocket is important for my work but at home or office, I'm using the SP2 or my desktop. I'm not interested in a phone with a screen larger than 5" and that's pushing it, my preference is 4.5".
     
  3. spinedoc77

    spinedoc77 Scribbler - Standard Member Senior Member

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    As a Note 3 phablet owner I also have a mini tablet and a tablet. The Note 3 is when I absolutely can't carry anything with me, going to a party, gym, etc. I'm in love with my vivotab 8 though, it is a dream to take notes on in the field, standing up, on the go, in the car, etc. It's also large enough where I don't mind web surfing on it, and writing an occasional report, where the Note 3 does well in a pinch but I wouldn't want to to anything extended on it. The final piece of the package is a full size tablet which is really just my "laptop" I use at home and work to be used occasionally as a tablet, usually in bed or on the couch.

    I'm surprised the TP10 is doing so well at the price it's been released at. The big draw are the accessories, but personally I'm not very impressed at the accessories in the least. Lenovo dropped the ball on the TP8 IMO, overpriced, no digitizer, of course people flock to the venue 8 pro, although that's why I wonder if people flocked to the dell 11 pro as much.
     
  4. excalibur1814

    excalibur1814 Scribbler - Standard Member Senior Member

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    I nearly changed my 1020 for the 1520 and, although it's obviously bigger, I didn't really experience any issues with the size even WITH a protective Nillkin cover (same pockets etc). Lovely phone, fast, fantastic screen and more with the added benefit of adding a 128GB MicroSDXC card!

    Why didn't I? Night time photos weren't as good as the 1020 and the 1020 also has the camera grip which means I can carry it with ease on holiday without dropping the thing. Ideally a 1020 with the 1520 cpu... Drool. (Or even better... a 1520 with the 1020 camera)
     
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  5. Mhotep

    Mhotep Scribbler - Standard Member

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    Another option is Sony Z Ultra.


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
     
  6. Kumabjorn

    Kumabjorn ***** is back Senior Member

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    I Think the form factor of a Kindle Paperwhite but with almost no bezel would probably be the ultimate size for a phone. Obviously with a HD Super AMOLED or better screen. But I agree with Mhotep the Sony Xpire Ultra Z is a sweet sweet device it takes pen input but without digitizer. In Japan it isn't sold as a phone though only tablet (no SIM card).
     
  7. Mesosphere

    Mesosphere Geek. Senior Member

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    Quoting myself... =)

    I think Lenovo is a bad example. I think their devices are failing because they are way to late to the table without bringing anything significantly improved from those that released early. They seem to bring better devices than those who release right away in some respects, but generally they aren't features I think most would consider holding out half a year for. Buy the time Lenovo releases something, the next generation is due up, and the next generation usually brings more enticing features than the upgrades Lenovo offers. People are willing to wait for the next generation, so they pass on Lenovo, but they aren't willing to wait on Lenovo's minor upgrades on the current generation for half a release cycle.

    Lenovo needs to get with the times =P
     
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2014
  8. Mesosphere

    Mesosphere Geek. Senior Member

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    Regarding 8" tablets. I suspect the 8" Dell Venue 8 Pro may have sold the highest volume of any penable Windows tablet ever (I think the AdDuplex numbers are highly unrepresentative). If the Asus had not been so unreliable and had been released 4 months earlier I think it could have done similarly well. I don't know whether phablets or 8" tablets win overall, but I definitely think 8" tablets are here to stay.
     
  9. zendragon

    zendragon Scribbler - Standard Member

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    I personally like the 2 device idea a lot more than where we are with it as a reality right now. I don't like how big the note 3 is, I would prefer something like 5' to maybe 5.3' but nothing larger, with a pen. And of course I would prefer WP8.1, like a 1020 that size with 1520 internals. I just don't think MS is going to give us a pen that can silo in something that size. For my use though, that's all I would really need day to day, a quick note here and there with my phone, everything else can wait for the time I have to write it out on a full size machine.
     
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  10. Cuhulin

    Cuhulin Scribbler - Standard Member

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    I agree about the two-device model. Right now, I'm using a Note 3 for that, with some programmatic hacks to deal with the SMS connection to my iphone 5, which has my main phone number. This Fall, however, I intend to compare the larger Iphone (assuming the rumors hold true), the Note 4 and the rumored new flagship from Nokia/MS on AT&T.

    I also agree that the 1520, as nice as it is, just has too much bulk. It feels more like an '80's brick phone to me than a modern phone. Hopefully, the next one will be just a little more compact.

    However, I believe a proper companion relationship between the two devices requires more than just a phone that is larger than an I5 but smaller than an Abrams tank. The "Continuity" features that Apple revealed for IOS 8 and OSX Yosemite are likely to be a key part of such companionship, allowing easy handoffs between the phone and tablet hybrid. At the present time, no company has this working properly. Apple has the feature nicely built in for their new operating systems, but they don't have a device comparable to the SP3. Microsoft has the SP3, but they don't yet have a good companion phone and the current versions of Windows share data well but not operations. Android doesn't even come close.

    So I think we may be in for another year or two of watching what happens, buying the closest thing available at the time, and then getting another device or two. (Are you ready for your name to be a verb again?)
     
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