A closer look at Microsoft's Surface RT tablet

Posted by Shane McGlaun

We've been aware of the hardware specs for Microsoft's indigenously designed Surface RT tablet for a few months now, and as of yesterday, we also know how much the device costs.

As we previously discussed, the tablet will start at $499, scaling up depending on storage options and accessories. Of course, specs and pricing alone only tell half the story - so many people are waiting for hands-on reviews and additional details before they decide to purchase a Windows tablet instead of an iPad or Android device.

Recently, the Microsoft Surface RT tablet team took to Reddit to answer some questions about the tablet, as noted by Liliputing, and to provide a brief glimpse into real world uses and scenarios. For example, one key question that many wanted answered was if the kickstand and keyboard cover could be used to type with on your lap. According to the team, you can.

One of the more interesting factoids offered up during the question-and-answer session is that users can play games on the tablet using an Xbox 360 USB controller. That's very nice to know for mobile gamers. The Surface RT team also notes that you should be able to use a number of Windows-oriented peripherals such as printers, keyboards, and cameras with the tablet right out-of-the-box. This is actually one of the benefits of buying a Windows mobile device, and one that Microsoft is obviously eager to talk up.

The team also confirmed that with the operating system and pre-installed software, there's about 20 GB of user available storage space left on the 32 GB tablet version. Users won't be able to install apps to an SD card, but any other data can be stored on memory cards. Those memory card are also hot swappable.

Plus, both the Touch Cover and the Type Cover are fitted with sensors to turn the keys off when not in use. The integrated kickstand supports the tablet at a 22° angle and there are no plans for an Ethernet adapter (understandably).