Slideshow

In Pictures: 10 reasons why the iPad with Retina display is better than the Surface RT

Our hands-on testing of Microsoft’s Surface RT vs. Apple’s iPad with Retina

  • We tested the new Microsoft Surface RT tablet, which sells for $499, same as the iPad. So, we ran a head-to-head comparison and found that each device has some areas where it’s superior, and other areas where it comes up short. Here's 10 reasons why the iPad is better.

  • The iPad wins the pixel battle over the Surface RT by a score of 2048X1536 to 1366X768. Is the difference noticeable? That depends on the individual. We didn’t see much difference, but if you’re looking at something like medical X-rays, the extra pixels become extra important.

  • The Surface RT is clearly designed to be used in landscape position. That’s how the kickstand is set up. That’s where the camera is located. In other words, more horizontal than vertical. The iPad is the opposite – designed to be held in portrait mode, which is better for consuming content, especially when it comes to reading an e-book or flipping through a site like Tumblr.

  • There’s really no comparison when it comes to the apps available on each device. The iPad wins hands down with 300,000 apps. The Microsoft app store is still getting off the ground.

  • For some reason, Microsoft shipped the Surface RT without support for POP mail. And the Surface RT version of it doesn’t come with Outlook. So, while Microsoft makes it harder than it needs to be to connect to email, Apple makes it a snap.

  • The Surface RT is Wi-Fi only, while the iPad offers the choice of a Wi-Fi or a cellular data version.

  • With Surface RT, you have to figure out how to navigate the tiles, if you want to work in Desktop mode, and you need to get used to the strange Charm Bar at the right of the screen. With the iPad, there's none of that. Push the 'on' button and click on your apps.

  • iPad has Siri. Surface RT doesn’t.

  • If you have an iPod, iPhone or Mac, then the iPad fits right into your existing device ecosystem and everything can be linked and synched via iCloud.

  • With the iPad, you get Apple’s instant-on feature. With the Surface RT, you need to enter a password and basically log in as you would with a PC or laptop.

  • The iPad takes HD video at 1080p. Surface RT is only 720p.

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