When it comes to tablets, iOS and Android devices come to mind before any of those belonging to other camps like Windows 8. We can't help it; these two are the most sikat mobile platforms right now. But that hasn't stopped Microsoft from unleashing its own party of tablets running on its own Windows 8 operating system—or us from hoping for a non-iOS/non-Android tablet to finally make it big.
That said, the Dell Latitude 10 tablet isn't the first Windows 8 device to come our way. We've actually had some quality time with the Acer Iconia W510 and ASUS VivoTab TF810 several months ago, and both turned out to be pretty solid tablets in their own right. But, as with these two, there's only one question we want the Latitude 10 to answer: Does it have enough goods to be able to make longtime iOS or Android users shift to Windows 8?
Or is it another “Meh” for us? And the answer is...
Because we like funky backgrounds
First things first: even Apple and Android loyalists will tend to wander occasionally towards—and possibly fixate on—the Latitude 10 instead of on their beloved. And it's not just because of its 10-inch size. This understated but still classy tab would be a hit in meetings and business trips, at the office, and at home.
We also love that it has USB, HDMI, mini-HDMI and micro-USB ports. But there's only one of each, so generosity's still limited. Users also get an SD slot, just in case the onboard 64GB storage (which is already a lot) is bitin. The mic/headphone jack will be crucial for sound-tripping and video calls. Also, the unit we borrowed can be paired with Dell accessories like add-on keyboards.
Since the Windows 8 Pro-powered Latitude 10 is also intended as a business device, it's packed with added features like BitLocker drive encryption for added file security, and the Remote Desktop feature, along with a lock slot on the left side.
Rivals for your geek heart: the Apple iPad (left) and Dell Latitude 10
Connectivity-wise, it keeps you on the loop with Wi-Fi and Bluetooth. Full-sized tablets aren't exactly made for one-handed operation, but the Latitude 10 really wants you to get handsy. Unlike the iPad, which we can comfortably hold in one hand in any orientation while reading or browsing, this tablet calls for both mitts most of the time. It also felt slightly heavier, but not enough to strain your back when lugging it around.
Learning the ropes
An image of this review within this review #reviewception
Microsoft's OS took some flak from consumers when it was launched, and it still annoys those who prefer earlier versions. But it is a refreshing change, especially for those who use iOS and Android all the time. For Windows 8 virgins, Dell provides video tutorials and instructions on basic functions/operations on the tablet. These are very helpful for noobs since Windows 8 is quite different from what we're used to in other platforms.
There are also a few features that we really found handy. For example, the tablet's Desktop Mode is a must for those who need more than basic operation. It allows users to install programs that aren't readily available as mobile apps. Basically, since you're running Windows, you can install virtually everything you need and want on it, and launch programs installed on Desktop Mode from automatically included shortcuts on the Start screen. Of course that doesn't mean business users should turn the Latitude 10 into a desktop replacement and install on it resource-heavy programs and apps, but props to Microsoft for the convenience. (On a related note, click here to be more Windows 8-ready!)