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  • (playful music)

  • - So I review a lot of products.

  • When I do, I often think about who a thing is made for.

  • So take the Surface Go 2 right here.

  • Who is this for?

  • I have a bunch of guesses.

  • I think it's for families that need a second computer

  • for their kid who is now doing

  • all of their school work at home.

  • I think it's for gadget heads who just wanna tiny,

  • cool, little computer that's,

  • that's me by the way.

  • But I kinda hate breaking gadgets down demographically.

  • I hate saying if you wanna touch screen

  • and you wanna tablet and if you need Windows,

  • and if you want a small computer,

  • or if you wanna save money, plus if you're Virgo

  • or if you're a Scorpio.

  • Look, you get the idea.

  • So well, I fit in the middle of one

  • of those Venn diagrams for the Surface Go 2

  • because I love tiny computers and I know

  • how to work with it when there're many, many limitations.

  • I don't think that the Go 2 works

  • for the large Venn diagram of people

  • who just wanna use a computer.

  • And I think I can explain why, so let's do that.

  • Should we just get into it?

  • We should get into it, let's get into it.

  • (soft music)

  • Now, if you're unfamiliar with these Surface Go line,

  • it is a tiny, little tablet that is about the same

  • size as an iPad or iPad Air or 11 inch iPad.

  • It starts at $399, but nobody uses these things

  • without a keyboard and the keyboard cost about a $100

  • or you can spend a $130 for the Alcantara version.

  • So that's 500 bucks for the base model with a keyboard,

  • which is about the same price

  • as a basic iPad with a basic keyboard.

  • And this thing is adorable.

  • I love this hardware.

  • Microsoft kept the exact same body size,

  • but they made the bezels on the screen

  • a little bit smaller, they up the resolution a tad,

  • it's now a 10.5 inch screen

  • with a 1920 by 2080 resolution.

  • There's still a kick stand on the back.

  • There's a micro SD card slot, there's a couple of ports,

  • and there's a headphone jack, hooray!

  • Second to maybe the Surface Pro X,

  • this is probably my favorite Microsoft hardware.

  • Now, the version I got here to review

  • is the fancy pants version

  • with a real Intel Core m3 processor

  • instead of the Pentium Gold processor

  • that comes in the base model.

  • This has eight gigs of RAM,

  • which really is what you want for Windows

  • to not be a suffer fest.

  • It also has a proper SSD while the base model

  • has a slower eMMC storage.

  • Oh, also they threw LTE in this thing,

  • which means that all in with keyboard,

  • this model costs 860 buck,

  • which is just a little bit cheaper

  • than the equivalent respect iPad Air with a keyboard.

  • But look, it still a lot of money

  • for such a tiny computer.

  • (soft music)

  • I keep bring up the iPad

  • because it's the same size as this.

  • But also because it's kind of the same idea.

  • You get a tiny, little portable tablet

  • that can do a lot of things, but not everything.

  • There's always a compromise when you pay

  • this little money and you use a computer

  • that's this little.

  • You get stopped from doing what you wanna do sometimes.

  • Now, with the iPad, you're stopped from doing stuff

  • mainly because either the apps just aren't there

  • or because the operating system just won't let you.

  • Now, with the Surface Go 2, that's not a problem.

  • You can install literally any Windows app that you want.

  • Like here, I installed Photoshop.

  • The full, real Photoshop with every single

  • Photoshop feature and I can just launch it.

  • And well, see, with the Surface Go 2,

  • even my very fancy one here,

  • the thing that stops you isn't the OS or the lack of apps.

  • Instead, it has a way lower ceiling

  • for running multiple apps or very powerful apps.

  • Another way of putting that is that it's slow,

  • but that's not exactly what I mean.

  • See, when you're just browsing

  • with a few tabs or doing Office app stuff,

  • or some email or watching Netflix

  • and maybe not all that stuff all at once,

  • then it's not a problem.

  • At least on the Core m3 version of the Surface Go 2,

  • it handles all of those tasks one by one just fine.

  • Just don't run Photoshop on this or edit video.

  • I mean, you can, I'm looking at Photoshop right now,

  • but you really don't want to.

  • But if you keep this thing with in its limits,

  • it is a super fun machine that gets the job done.

  • (soft music)

  • But look, I still have a hard time

  • with this little computer.

  • Last year, I felt like that if Microsoft

  • could fix three things with the original Surface Go,

  • I could really buy into the idea of this device

  • and even start recommending it.

  • The first thing was screen size.

  • And that's fixed basically.

  • I wish it had gotten a little brighter,

  • and I wished the bezels were still

  • even little bit smaller, but it's enough.

  • The second thing is speed.

  • And that's sort of fixed as long as you're willing

  • to spend the extra money on the Core m3 version.

  • And the third thing was battery life.

  • Right, so the battery on the Surface Go 2

  • is 0.7 watt hours bigger

  • than on the original Surface Go,

  • and that has meant point nothing

  • in terms of longer battery life.

  • It wasn't great last year and this year

  • I'm barely getting through a whole work day.

  • I'm talking five or maybe six hours of battery life

  • and I'm not pushing it to get those five or six hours.

  • I think that in ultra portable device

  • should ultra portable battery life and this just isn't.

  • But say you can live with that, should you?

  • I keep coming back to that Venn diagram

  • and all the or, if's, and's and who's and stuff.

  • So say you want an inexpensive computer

  • for your kids to use for school.

  • That's kind of what Microsoft is pushing

  • in the commercials for this device.

  • Okay, but for 500 bucks, you can get a Chromebook

  • with really good specs that just flies.

  • Would Chrome OS work for you?

  • Or say your main thing is you want a really small tablet.

  • Okay, but an iPad is honestly going to be faster

  • and have better battery life.

  • Would iPad a less work for you?

  • I mean, how badly do you really need Windows?

  • Okay, say you really need Windows.

  • I totally get that, but then how badly

  • do you need a device that's this size.

  • Because if you spend this 750-ish bucks

  • for the faster Core m3 version

  • of the Surface Go 2 with a keyboard,

  • well, you can get a used or refurbed

  • Surface Pro 6 or 7 that's going to be way faster

  • and have a bigger screen for basically

  • the same amount of money and just a little bit more.

  • So this thing is great but you need

  • to ask yourself why you need this

  • instead of a faster Chromebook and iPad

  • that works better as a tablet,

  • a Surface Pro or even an inexpensive Windows laptop

  • from Dell or Lenovo or whoever.

  • If you have good answers for why

  • you don't want any of those things,

  • then hey, welcome to the center

  • of the Venn diagram with me.

  • We're gonna make t-shirts and stuff.

  • If you want a small tablet

  • and it has to run Windows,

  • then lucky for you, the Surface Go 2

  • does those two things fairly well.

  • It is a nice, tiny tablet.

  • But I think it only makes sense

  • for a tiny number of people.

  • I also think it's gadget heads

  • who just wanna tiny, cool,

  • what am I doing?

(playful music)

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B1 surface ipad tablet keyboard computer tiny

Surface Go 2 review: don't push it

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    林宜悉 posted on 2020/11/11
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