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Microsoft launched the Surface Pro X along with Surface Laptop 3 and Surface Pro 7 last month. The Pro X is Microsoft’s first Surface that uses an ARM chip that’s made by Microsoft, of course, with some help from Qualcomm. While the design aesthetic of the Pro X is praiseworthy, if there is something that kind of held customers back from pre-ordering the Pro X, it’s the concern regarding the performance!
Luckily, the wait is over and reviews of the Surface Pro X are finally out! We have compiled the reviews of Surface Pro X from various outlets and from what we’ve understood, the Surface Pro X isn’t the kind of “Pro” you’d like to have. You can find out whys and wherefores in the review round-up below.
While Engadget seems to have all the praise for the Surface Pro X, it pointed out a couple of major flaws in the Pro X model and those are the limited app compatibility and various software bugs. And while Microsoft could fix all those issues by issuing a software update, according to the Engadget, a Chromebook or a Surface Pro 7 is a far better choice than the Surface Pro X.
The Surface Pro X is a beautiful piece of hardware and the best Snapdragon-powered PC around. It offers a great 2-in-1 experience, a speedy gigabit LTE connection and an excellent keyboard case (for an extra $140). But the entire Windows on Snapdragon platform is plagued by limited app compatibility and bugs. If you must have Microsoft’s software to get work done on the go, the Surface Pro X is a solid choice. But most people will be better served by either a Chromebook or the Surface Pro 7.
You can read Engadget’s full review here.
According to The Verge, the Surface Pro X is “a computer built for a world that doesn’t exist.” The Verge gives the due credit to Microsoft for beautiful design, screen quality, and the stylus, but it appears that the tradeoffs are so huge that they will force customers to look somewhere else.
The ideas are exciting, but not exciting enough for me to recommend anybody pay money for them. The apps simply aren’t ready yet — either because they don’t work with this processor or because they’re too slow on it. Buying this machine is essentially making a huge bet that the Windows app ecosystem will rally to support a new Windows initiative in short order. Very few people have won that bet in the past 20 years: just ask the developers of Windows Phone and Metro / Modern / Microsoft Store / UWP apps.
You should never buy a gadget today based on the hope that the software will come tomorrow. That rule applies to the Surface Pro X more than usual because the investment is so large. For the near $1,800 you’d have to spend to get the Pro X model I reviewed, you would be able to buy a Surface Pro 7 kitted out with equivalent RAM, storage, keyboard, stylus, and an Intel Core i7 processor that would be loads faster and also be compatible with all Windows apps.
You can read the full review of The Verge here.
CNN comes with a similar story. Screen quality, design, keyboard, stylus are all those things that make the Surface Pro X attractive, but with all those good things, comes compromises in performance, battery life, and most importantly, cost.
I really like the Surface Pro X, but the core item holding me back from recommending it is the ARM-based CPU. Yes, it can handle web browsing and the apps that it supports, but it isn’t the full Windows experience. Developers will need to do their part and support the Pro X, as it’s likely going to be a popular device.
But if you want an ultra-thin Surface, the Pro X is the way to go It has an incredibly slim build with an epic color, will last all day with a vibrant display and the Signature Keyboard with Slim Pen are impressive.
You can read CNN’s full review here.
There’s a lot to like about the Pro X: the design makes the Pro 7 look outdated, the updated Type cover has a few tricks up its Alcantara, and the serviceability makes the Pro X a solid machine on for paper corporate customers.
The Pro X is not for everyone, there are people who will be better off with a Laptop 3 or a Pro 7. Those are the employees who need to run heavier applications or type a lot which is better on a traditional laptop than it is on Type cover. And it’s not cheap, with a starting price at $999, without the Type cover ($269 for the option with the pen), you have to love the device to pay the premium to take it to the office.
But for the person who is highly mobile, wants built-in connectivity options, and prefers to carry around a thin and light device, the Pro X might be for them. After all, it runs Windows which means it works with Active Directory, has the security of Windows Hello, Microsoft 365 functionality is baked in, and IT can easily manage all aspects of the device, remotely.
You can read the full review of Petri here.
Gizmodo has a slightly different perspective on Surface Pro X. While the reviewer has acknowledged all the issues that come with Microsoft’s ARM-powered Pro, the Pro X, according to the reviewer, can be a great alternative to Chromebooks as the former has better compatibility for desktop-class software.
If you’re looking for a real all-rounder, Microsoft says the Surface Pro 7 will be a better fit, and I agree. The Surface Pro X’s real target audience is business users who want something that’s portable, responsive, and has great longevity. And if you’re you’re someone that primarily uses cloud-based apps like Office 365, G Suite, Salesforce, and more, the Surface Pro X could be a great choice. You can even get a version of Slack with ARM64 support from the Microsoft Store. In a lot of ways, this makes the Surface Pro X like owning a really high-end Chromebook with better compatibility for desktop-class software (but without support for Android apps).
You can check out Gizmodo’s full review here.
While Surface Pro X has its flaws, if your usage is geared towards watching Netflix, checking emails, light web browsing, then Surface Pro X isn’t a bad choice. And if that’s all you want, you can go ahead and order the Pro X right now from Amazon.