Samsung Note 10.1 2014 VS MS Surface 2 (RT) ?

Daaku Singh

Mar 7, 2014
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Looking for a 'work-oriented' tablet so I can stop hauling around my 15" HP elitebook laptop from site to site. I'm a field engineer by profession and currently carry 2 backpacks (one with my tools/cables/meters and 2nd backpack with HP laptop/power cables+mouse, etc). Trying to eliminate the laptop bag and replace it with a tablet. Might get a new backpack so I can fit the tablet+field gear in one bag. I don't own any tablets personally (my kids have a iPad mini and iPad3) and I find Apple to 'enclosed' for my taste so I don't bother with their tablets so much. I stopped by Bestbuy earlier this week and played around both with the Surface 2 and Note 2014 and like them both.

Critical requirements:
- Battery life (looking for 6-8 hrs under normal use..min 6 hrs)
- Office suite (hence why I'm looking at Surface 2 which has full office suite built-in..not sure if Google has something similar). I won't create full blown docs but more for viewing excel/word data from my work (for field inventory, etc)
- Good 'portability' factor...both the new Surface 2 and Samsung 2014 seem lightweight for daily usage.
- Remote desktop capability (this is where I do most of the work from sites...remote into servers, my work desktop, etc). I understand with Surface 2, mstsc.exe runs fine from desktop mode.
- Good file management via SD cards
- MKV support (for movies on SD card).
- Under $500 (don't see any point in spending extra for a tabet ;-))
- Decent apps for casual entertainment (I'm not a demanding guy..basics like netflix, flipboard, weather, news apps will keep me happy)

I like the S-pen feature on the Note but from what I've read, some people say it's more of a novelty than an actual helpful feature. Also, not sure whether Google has any remote desktop app or Office apps for productivity. Surface 2 has both rdp/office but no S-pen and MS apps are too limited (in its current stage).

What do you guys recommend?