To be fair, Surface Pro plus its keyboard, is probably the best tablet-plus-keyboard implementation to date.
"We design this for the people who use this every day." That's who they really listen to when designing the Surface devices. Now we're going to see some of those folks.
We're seeing a student in a library, a doctor at an office, an architect now giving a presentation...
But Pro and Pro 2 were both too thick, and the idea of making this awesome keyboard, then forcing you to buy it separately seemed odd.
Chris Sharples at SHoP Architects is saying how the Surface allows him to "Take digital models and bring them into the field."
Now a Harvard student talking about an app called Get Prepped to help with the application process.
Nick Patel at Palmeto Health shows us how they can get an EKG directly to a tablet in the field.
Steve Gleason now, former pro football player who's been in Surface commercials.
The essential problem with differentiation is that as the Surface Pro/Pro 2 runs full Windows 8 on an Intel CPU, there's not really anything it can do that other Win 8 tablets can't.
Therefore, you have to rely on design and other "high-touch" features.
Adam Klaptocz, who's using drones for mapping information sent to a Surface.
And Panos is back up on stage "That's cool, right? It's super-inspiring when you see stuff like that."
"Let's take a step back for just a minute and let's deal with some reality. Three years ago, there was a bunch of people in a room just like that, right here, like this, that were writing stories. And a lot of those stories looked like 'There's this thing called tablets, and it's coming and it's going to kill the laptop.'"
Panos points out that the "tablets kill laptops" storyline didn't exactly play out. Yay laptops!
"That was supposed to happen, for sure." Panos talks about how that impacted the roadmap of the company. "Just look around for one minute, it is super-fascinating." We're all using laptops here, indeed most of us are using Macs. "96% of you who have iPads in your bags are also carrying laptops."
"There's a reason for that. It's not bad, it's good"
Great wideshot of the room shows an endless sea of backlit MacBook logos.
Little cameo of our photog Sarah Tew there!
"Tablets, from a product-making standpoint, they're designed for you to sit back and watch movies."
"Laptops are designed to help you get stuff done. They're designed because you actually need to do things."
By the way, this talk about how laptops are designed to "do" things shows why the Yoga-style design is the best hybrid design to date -- because it doesn't compromise the laptop shape.
Just noticed that there's a laptop, a Macbook Air, up on stage behind that scale -- whatever we're getting today will apparently compete with that.
Panos is now holding the MacBook Air, and an iPad Air as well.
Uh oh, is MS planning some kind of fold-back, Yoga-style device?
Panos is describing the shopping experience, about what you're supposed to buy.
HP, Acer, and others have all gotten on the 360-degree-hinge bandwagon.
People who have worked at major PC makers have all told me that the Yoga-style hinge is the least expensive hybrid-style hinge hardware to implement.
"Almost every time" Panos says that sales people turn around and ask consumers "What is it that you want to do?" Consumers want to do everything, of course. "Does that conflict need to exist?"
"You walk into a store and that conflict is right in front of you."
Frankly, not knowing if you want a tablet or laptop is *not* the biggest problem of the retail tech shopping experience.
"96% of the time you buy two things," a tablet and a laptop. So, today, he wants to remove the conflict.
"To do it you need to have everything in one package. You'd have to not compromise anything... This paradigm called battery life, using your product all day, all that had to still be true."
"It all had to be there. Maybe it had to be a little bigger, because man these small screens they look small. And there's a reason for that -- they are!"
"This paradigm called battery life." Not sure that usage is correct.