I was in Best Buy the other day (trying to get in on that mangled MasterCard coupon fiasco) and actually saw Surface devices set up (though not yet for sale). So if you want to check one out and you don't have a Microsoft Store near you, BB is an option.
excerpts only (see link for full text):
Pen. Unlike its RT-based brother,Surface Pro both supports and includes a pressure-sensitive electromagnetic pen. The video notes that this pen lets you “add a personal touch,” which is ridiculous, but also shows a very good use for the pen: It’s ability to tap tiny onscreen elements in powerful desktop applications like Adobe Photoshop.
Dual-purpose charger. Surface Pro’s power brick is significantly bigger than that of Surface RT, and unlike that latter device, the power connector isn’t right there, it’s at the end of a separate cord, as is often the case with PCs. But Surface Pro’s power brick also features a second USB 3.0 port for charging accessories. The device itself has just a single USB (3.0) port, as does Surface RT (which uses USB 2.0).
Surface Pro: an in-depth look at Microsoft's super tablet | The Verge
Surface Pro has a gorgeous 10.6-inch ClearType Full HD Display that outputs a 1920 x 1080 resolution. I say it's gorgeous because this display is unprecedented on this type of device. Text reproduction and colors were spot on and viewing angles were great for tablet use. Aside from the resolution, Microsoft has packed in 10 points of multi-touch support and active pen input. The pen snaps magnetically to the side of the tablet and it has a small ridge that slots into the charging port. This magnetic charging port has been greatly improved from the Surface RT, it's a lot stronger and it's noticeable when you remove the pen or slot the charging cable into place.
Removing the pen from its resting place allows you to take advantage of this unique display. As you bring it closer it starts to react with the Windows 8 UI on screen, allowing you to glide it above the glass while the cursor tracks away. This isn't a Wacom implementation, but its pressure sensitivity and apps like OneNote and Fresh Paint responded well to the pen use. The pen includes a button to trigger the right-click function in the OS and it also has an eraser at the top so you can flip the pen over and start deleting content within apps. The pen auto calibrates and I found the tracking was very precise. Palm rejection works as you'd expect so that you can rest your hands on the screen while you take notes or draw.
Microsoft has also made the Surface Pro charging cable slightly longer and implemented a USB port into the charging unit to charge your phone. I found it was a lot easier to snap on the charging cable, most likely down to the different angle and stronger magnet.
Performance was equally as impressive as the display and the Intel Core i5 processor is the perfect combination for Windows 8. One of the big complaints in our Surface RT review was the hit and miss nature of Windows RT performance on the Tegra 3 chipset. It's night and day with the Surface Pro. This thing flies. Opening up multiple apps is super fast and despite its tablet-like appearance, this is a full-power Windows PC.
Surface Pro vs Surface RT
AnandTech - Hands on with Microsoft's Surface Pro, Available in US & Canada on February 9th
As I mentioned in the first Surface Pro announcement piece, the tablet uses a 17W Core i5 (Ivy Bridge) SKU. I'm not sure how much we should read into Surface Pro not being a 7W SDP Ivy Bridge launch vehicle. The performance per volume is obviously going to be very good as a result. Microsoft demonstrated content creation and even gaming workloads on the tablet, both of which were very responsive.
Don't be fooled by the similarities in capacity. Surface Pro uses a full blown SSD, not an eMMC solution for storage. It also features an integrated USB 3.0 port, so IO performance will be notebook-like not tablet-like.
Surface Pro features two fans that are audible under heavy load but attempt to remain as quiet as possible. The fans will adjust their direction of rotation depending on how you're holding the tablet, with the goal of never exhausting warm air into your hands. The vents are located around the top half of the device as you can see in the image above (this separation doesn't exist on Surface RT).
Microsoft Surface Pro review | Tablets Reviews | TechRadar
But Surface Pro also has its own active pen so you can tap as precisely as with a mouse, or draw and write smoothly on screen. Surface Pro doesn't come with Office but we tested the pen in OneNote 2013 as well as in FreshPaint and you can write quickly without the pen tip skidding over the surface of the screen.
When the pen is near the screen, finger touch is blocked so your hand doesn't interfere with what you're writing or drawing. It's a pressure-sensitive pen (although it's not the Wacom pen we've seen on most PC tablets), so the harder you press the thicker the line you draw.
We didn't have enough time to test battery life but Windows Store apps feels just as responsive as on Surface RT, and desktop programs feel as responsive as you'd expect from a Core i5. Microsoft's first real PC is shaping up to be really great and really portable.
Microsoft Surface Pro hands-on impressions from CES | PCWorld
During my CES demo, I got a good half-hour with the Surface Pro, and every time I held it, I noticed and re-noticed its improved pixel density. It’s not anything that leaps forward when Surface is propped on a table in workstation mode, but when you’re grasping the device in your hands, tablet-style, the improved resolution is obvious, and in your face.
We also ran Surface RT with an external display, driving a behemoth, high-res monitor via the Pro’s Mini DisplayPort adapter. OK, that was a revelation. When attached to an external monitor, the Surface Pro really does become a full PC—and in this mode, the tablet itself can function as a drawing pad for full-fledged graphics applications, thanks to its included pen.
During the demo, we did fire up the first-person shooter Bulletstorm, and its frame rate at 1920x1080 was smooth enough to play, but didn’t look butter smooth in 60fps+ territory. Still, if nothing else, the game demo did prove that Surface Pro is a legitimate performer, and can deliver what one would expect from other Windows 8/Intel tablet combos running similar components.
Microsoft Surface Pro Hands-On: This Is What It Should Have Been All Along
excerpts only (see link):
Pro runs real Windows 8—the same thing you'd install on a desktop—so you aren't confined to Microsoft's anemic, strip mall app store. You can install Photoshop, Civilization, WinZip, whatever the hell you want. If it's made for Windows and it's somewhat recent, it'll probably run on the Surface Pro—even some brief time playing Bulletstorm yielded totally acceptable performance, given that the thing is smaller than any laptop.
Microsoft Surface with Windows 8 Pro - Tablets - CNET Reviews
Not only can you use the tile-based Windows 8 interface on the Surface Pro, but you can visit a regular desktop and open older applications, run Steam, and do anything you'd do otherwise. The Surface Pro connects to monitors and outputs at resolutions beyond 1080p, and you can add Bluetooth and USB 3 peripherals like mice, keyboards, and external hard drives.