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When is a Surface Pro 3 tablet not suitable for work?

Microsoft's Surface Pro 3 is good for mobile users and runs enterprise-grade apps, but its light weight and processor capacity pose some limits.

Microsoft Surface is a very capable tablet for work. In fact, I know several people who have replaced their desktops with Surface Pro tablets. The Windows tablets can do almost anything that a laptop can do. Even so, there are some situations in which the Surface Pro 3 tablet might not be the best choice.

I would recommend Surface Pro 3 for almost anything except for work that involves heavy-duty video/photo storage or a lot of typing.

The Surface Pro 3 has plenty of processing power for video and photo editing. One model is equipped with an Intel Core i7-4650U running at 1.7 GHz as well as an Intel HD Graphics 5000 graphics card. That's plenty of power for video editing.

The 2160 x 1440 display also lends itself to video editing. The limiting factor is storage. The top model only includes 512 GB of storage. Although that is a lot of storage for a tablet, I have worked on several video projects that would have easily exhausted all of the available storage.

The other thing that the Surface isn't all that great for is lengthy typing. The Surface Type Cover works relatively well, but when I've composed long documents on my Surface tablet, I found that my hands tired quickly unless I used an external keyboard.

I have also discovered that when I use my tablet (with the Microsoft Type cover) on an airplane tray table, the bounce in the tray table and the keyboard's slight flexibility are a bad combination, causing keystrokes to be omitted on a fairly consistent basis. In fact, if I am on a plane, I prefer to use the on-screen keyboard.

None of this is to say that the Surface Pro is a bad tablet. It is one of the best, if not the best tablet on the market. It's just that there are certain tasks that are better suited to a laptop or a desktop.

Personally, I use a desktop computer with multiple monitors when I am at home, but I almost always use my Surface Pro 3 tablet when I travel. I especially love the fact that unlike a laptop, the TSA does not require these tablets to be removed from bags when going through airport security.

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This was last published in November 2014

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Have you found situations where a Surface Pro 3 tablet was appropriate -- or not -- for work?
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But almost everything that you are mentioning can be resolved using a docking station. In fact that's mostly what any "business" user will do. If you are going to work on it for a long period of time, you dock it.
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I actually use it (I7, 8GB, 256GB) as a desktop (and laptop/tablet) everywhere now. At work I dock it in the custom docking station and drive 3 external monitors (using the mini-display port as well as an additional ThinkPad docking station with 2 DVI ports) with it with very few hiccups. At home I drive 2 external monitors without using a docking station, again with no problems. On the road it is my only tablet. I love this thing. I have not yet found a situation in which I was strapped for resources. I do have some issues with the keyboard sensitivity, but I use external most the time, so it is not a big deal.
I am a systems analyst and use several high-demand apps/programs.
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