Microsoft Surface 3 Review: The Tablet I Want At The Price I Don’tSean Buckley5/05/15 1:00pmFiled to: Microsoft Surface 3 Reviewreviewslaptopstabletsconvertiblessurfacemicrosoft surfacesurface 3technologycomputersreview22524EditPromoteShare to KinjaToggle Conversation toolsGo to permalink I’m dancing on the grave of Microsoft’s original Surface tablet, and I feel no remorse. It’s hard to feel sad—it was a beautifully crafted ten-inch tablet that ran a crippled version of Windows. It was awful. Now it’s dead, and I’ve got a way better tablet. I’m so happy. What Is It? It’s a cheaper, 10-inch Microsoft Surface tablet—complete with pop-out kickstand, an awesome flip-out keyboard cover and real stylus support—that runs full Windows 8.1 in spite of not having a “Pro” tacked onto the end of its name. The Intel Atom x7 CPU is less powerful than the chip in Microsoft’s flagship tablet, but it’s still a real computer capable of running all your normal, legacy desktop Windows apps. In other words, it’s a low-end Microsoft Surface you might actually want to buy. Why Does It Matter? The Microsoft Surface 3 is more than a gravestone for the broken, limited husk of an operating system that was Windows RT (the brains of that busted old Surface I mentioned earlier), it marks Microsoft’s entry into a new market of computers: small, thin, lightweight machines powered by Intel Atom and Core M processors. It’s an emerging category with a handful of surprisingly powerful tablets, tiny HDMI dongles and media center PCs and yes, even Apple’s new Intel Core M powered MacBook. The Surface 3 lives in the middle of all of them: more powerful than the lowest-end devices, but way cheaper than Apple’s new head-turner. Design Remember the thin, matte aluminum chassis of last year’s Surface Pro 3? The slightly angled edges, that classy kickstand and the more natural, right-aligned Windows hardware button? Take all that, shrink it down to 10-inches, make it just a hair thinner (0.34-inches) and you have the Microsoft Surface 3. It’s a dead-ringer for Microsoft’s flagship tablet, but with a few subtle changes that both improve and worsen the design. Don’t worry, almost all of the good things are still here.