iPad vs. Microsoft Surface Pro for Real Estate

August 20 2013

vl surface proThe real estate industry has struggled with supporting the tablet needs of real estate professionals. Until now, the iPad has reigned supreme as the leader among real estate professionals. Now Microsoft has a legitimate contender in the race that deserves serious consideration among real estate professionals. It is called the Surface Pro.

About Microsoft Surface Pro

The Microsoft Surface is a tablet like the iPad. It offers touch screen computing like the iPad, and is similar in size (weighs 300 grams more than the iPad, or about 30% heavier). The Surface Pro is clearly the more powerful device in terms of computing power and memory. However, the key feature is that the Surface Pro runs the full version of Windows 8 that you may be running on your desktop today.

Moreover, every application that you use in real estate will work 100% of the time. You will not run into any glitches with any of your business software because you are using a tablet instead of a desktop. You have access to the full MLS, forms, Internet, and all of your mail, calendar, and documents are mirrored seamlessly across your computers.

Of course, the Surface Pro runs full versions of Microsoft Office including Outlook, Word, PowerPoint, and Excel. It also runs popular business software like Adobe Acrobat Pro and QuickBooks. Everything works exactly the same as it does today on your computer. It even has a camera like the iPad and offers apps for your favorite site like Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, Pandora, LinkedIn, Dropbox, Skype, Netflix, and more.

The Surface Pro has a larger display than the iPad, more powerful graphics, runs Windows 8, Bluetooth, and has a video port. It is available in 64GB storage or 128GB models. The good news is that it comes with an SD card slot, not only making it easy to expand the memory, but enabling you to quickly load photos from the digital camera you use for taking property photos.

Worst Part of Surface Pro

The Surface Pro is missing one critical ingredient – 4G Internet access is not an option. The only way that you can get Internet access on your Surface Pro is to connect it to WiFi in your home, office, hotspot, or phone. Personally, I do not see this as a problem because I am able to connect the device to the Internet using my iPhone. This also works on Android or any other smartphone today across all carriers. Rumors are that they will have a version with 4G (LTE and NFC) out by Christmas.

The Surface Pro is a cross over between a laptop and a tablet. Rather than operating a mobile type processor, it operates a laptop quality processor. When it comes to everyday tasks like web surfing, your battery life on the Surface Pro will be about the same as the iPad. The difference is that the Surface Pro is much, much faster.

When it comes to Apps, Apple is clearly the winner, but who cares? You do not need an app when you have a full computer in your hands.

I have had my Microsoft Surface Pro for a month now. Since getting it, I have not touched my iPad 4.

Other articles of interest: Birdview IDX | AgentOffice