Windows 11 tablet needs to work

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a photo of the Surface Go 3 surrounded by keyboard and stylus accessories and Pikachu

The Surface Go 3 makes me need to be needed somewhere so I can tear out that cutie and take notes.
photo: Florence Ion / Gizmodo

The last time I used a pc as small as Microsoft’s Surface Go 3 was a similarly large one Netbook more than a decade ago. And oh my god how far the Windows platform has come.

the Surface Go 3 is a computer-tablet hybrid that embodies the inviting sensitivity of Windows 11. The Type Cover, sold separately, makes it easy to flip open, fold down and start typing you want to get as it completes the use of the Go 3. Windows 11 remains rooted on its desktop, so I’ve never felt like the Go 3 could be without its folio case despite its portable form factor. But I also liked to know that I can take this little device with me wherever I can get almost all the functions I need without being tied to my desk.

A small computer

the Surface Go 3 is Microsoft’s third generation Go device, although it hasn’t deviated much from the second generation. It has updated internals, but everything else stays relatively the same: there’s a 10.5-inch display with a 3: 2 aspect ratio, a fold-out stand, and similar storage and storage offerings – up to 8 GB of RAM and 64 GB or more 128 GB storage. The Surface Go 3 has the same number of ports as its predecessor: a USB-C port, a Surface Connect port for the power supply, a Surface Keyboard port on the bottom, an audio jack and a microSD card slot for additional storage .

the Go 3 Also sports a centered 5-megapixel front-facing camera with Windows Hello and an 8-megapixel rear camera.

The Go’s compact size is why you’d choose it over any other Surface device. It’s a little less than 10 inches wide and about 8.3 mm thin, and weighs a little over a pound. Its small size is why I would suggest using it only in a pinch, not for day-to-day computing.

Overwhelming battery life

the Surface Go 3 has a 27Wh battery with a 45W charger that only works with the proprietary Surface Connect port. It would be nice to charge with the included USB-C port as a backup in desperate situations, and it’s a shame I can’t share cables with my Android devices.

A photo of the Surface Connect adapter charging the device

The Surface Go 3 is charged using a Surface Connect adapter.
photo: Florence Ion / Gizmodo

Microsoft says that Surface Go 3 can take up to 11 hours with typical device usage, which is only a reflection of my experience. I used the Go 3 as a tablet to read and surf all day without charging it until I went to bed at night. But the Surface Go 3 Barely lasted 5 hours and 40 minutes in Gizmodo’s battery rundown test. That’s two hours less than last year’s Surface Go 2 and about as much as the full-size Frame laptop and Acer Aspire Vero. Even some more powerful gaming laptops, which usually don’t have the best batteries, have stood the test of time Go 3 in our laboratories.

But in everyday use it is Go 3 does the job. Thanks to Windows 11, it has a host of battery-saving features that allow you to live longer on one charge. I had these turned off for testing purposes, but dimming the screen, turning off the hard drives in the background, and setting an automatic standby mode all help to extend the usage on this tiny computer.

Take-away accessories

A photo of a hand using the Surface Type Cover keyboard

The Surface Type Cover glows underneath.
photo: Florence Ion / Gizmodo

the Surface Go 3 comes on its own, but it’s the accessories that complete the experience. Considering the Go 3 ranges from $ 400 for the base model to $ 730 for the specialty model, all you should do is buy the extras you need.

If you plan on that Surface Go 3 As a word processor on the go, consider investing in the $ 100 Type Cover. I’ve tested that Go 3 with the Signature Type Cover in platinum, which costs $ 130 and feels more comfortable. Both covers have illuminated buttons with 1 mm travel and a trackpad that works with gestures.

I wrote between 109 and 76 words per minute using the Signature Type Cover keyboard. The slower number was adjusting to my claws. It’s difficult to type with long fingernails, and I’ve kept making mistakes in my text that I wouldn’t with my usual mechanical keyboard setup.

A photo of someone drawing on Go 3 with a Surface Pen

Add flair to your notes with the Surface Pen.
photo: Florence Ion / Gizmodo

the Surface Go 3 also uses the standard Surface Pen as an alternate input method. You can attach it to either side of the device with its built-in magnets, which are strong enough to hold the pen even if you throw the tablet on a bed and pillow.

I like to use the Surface Pen when doing everyday browser tasks, whether it’s moving folders in directories or browsing the shared items online at TJ Maxx. I tried handwriting recognition in tablet mode to avoid the floating on-screen keyboard, but I have messy faux italics that Windows struggled to identify at times. I wish I could talk to the pen as a digital art tool, but that’s completely out of my reach – and anyway, that Go 3 does not work with New Surface Slim Pen 2 with haptic feedback.

In my few days with that Go 3, I found it too frustrating to use that Go 3 with no pen or keyboard in tow. Considering that I work from home and would only ever take this with me to external meetings, I want the keyboard to be able to take notes and do edits on the go. I think that’s the meaning of the nickname “Go,” so think about how you would get this tablet computer on the streets.

Basic service

the Surface Go 3 is available with two different dual-core chip configurations. The base model has been upgraded from an Intel Pentium Gold 4425Y to a Pentium Gold 65000Y with 4 GB of RAM. There is also a more powerful model that Microsoft sent. It has a 10th generation Intel Core i3-10100Y and 8 GB of RAM. The Core i3 is a small improvement over last year’s Core m3. However, the performance is only nominally better.

A photo of the Go 3 standing upright

If you wanted, you could use the Go 3 like a vertical tablet.
photo: Florence Ion / Gizmodo

The two processors used are barebones in an industry comparison. You don’t necessarily go up on the test numbers, although you can still get lots of things done, some with the help of Windows.

In Geekbench 5, the Surface Go 3 scored in line with Android mid-range devices such as the Galaxy Tab S7 FE. In WebXPRT, which measures the overall performance of the browser, it was tested in a manner comparable to Apple’s latest iPad of the 9th generation. And while the Go 3 was able to run the Blender and Handbrake tests that we use on full-size laptops, it took a long time to do both.

The benchmarks are all in line with my experience with the Surface Go 3. It is able to be in a fix despite having its hiccups. I experienced slowdowns and long waits in the first few days Go 3, usually in memory-intensive apps like Chrome. If you have to do something process-intensive, e.g. For example, you can edit a RAW photo or quickly string a few video clips together with the Go 3albeit slowly and with patience. At least the ability is native, and I don’t have to look for the perfect app and browser extension combination to make things happen. These are concessions that I had to make with Chrome OS, for example. And that’s why I’m looking at a Windows 11 device as an alternative.

I’m still learning Windows 11 as I didn’t have compatible hardware to run the beta and have only lived with it for a few days. It definitely feels more tablet-like than Windows 10, which I use on my docked laptop. But with my long nails, it feels difficult to type links in small print and other similarly small assets. I also haven’t found out if I like the new Start menu and notification panel, or if they improve the tablet experience.

A photo of the Go 3 standing on a couch with its stand

Surface Go 3 lies in bed with you or sits upright to work at your desk.
photo: Florence Ion / Gizmodo

Worth buying?

Still, there’s a lot of versatility with that Surface Go 3. The key is figuring out how you prefer to use it. I had that Go 3 Set up as a secondary display on my desk to check into my social feeds during work hours. I also had a wireless mouse paired with it, which made it easier to switch between applications.

In my search for the perfect non-Apple tablet, this is it Surface Go 3 I was intrigued by the use of Windows in this form factor. However, there are still a few kinks to be solved even as features like widgets and Android apps are added. To this end, the Go 3 feels like a worthy second computer for those who have the money. We like it about as much as they do Surface Go 2You might also be interested in if it’s a Windows secondary machine you want, and you don’t want to spend upwards of $ 1,000 on the performance model of the machine Go 3 with 128 GB storage space and all important accessories.

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