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Third time's the charm

Design Spotlight: Microsoft Surface Pro 3

Is it our technological destiny to want both a tablet and a laptop forever, or can advances in hardware and software, combined with intelligent design, actually unify our professional and personal lives within one screen? Microsoft made its stance on the matter abundantly clear with the launch of the original Surface in the summer of 2012.

Two years later, the third iteration of the Surface is a marvel of engineering honed by experience and proving more than ever that Microsoft’s vision for the future of computing is as real as it gets. Here’s a rundown of the key innovations that make new Surface Pro 3 both a powerful Intel Core laptop and an easy-to-use tablet.

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Choosing wisely has never been easier

Device Decisions: Picking the Right Tablet for You

Navigating the ever-expanding tablet market doesn’t have to be complicated. Honestly answering some basic questions can help quickly narrow your focus. Are you really looking to just triage work emails, browse the web and review spreadsheets, or is editing photos and playing PC-quality games the goal? Your responses make choosing between Intel’s Atom and Core i processor line the natural place to start. Next, what about Android or Windows 8? How about screen size? Chances are, there’s an Intel-powered tablet available that meets (and beats) all of your requirements. Our buying guide video breaks down some of the best options on the market today, giving you more time to focus on far more important things, like correcting that slice.

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Why choose when you can have both?

Twice the Device: Tracking the Rise of the 2-in-1

Sick of juggling multiple device? You’re not alone. So called 2-in-1s can offer the best-of-both-worlds solution, combining the productivity of a laptop with the fun and convenience of a tablet. Check out our video for a rundown of this growing new gadget category and start plotting your new streamlined future today.

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The pick of the little

The Best iPad Mini & Mini Retina Cases

Does your iPad Mini Retina need some love? We’ve updated our best iPad Mini & Mini Retina cases at a variety of price points to help get your new Cupertino buddy from birthday suit to warm and cozy. Whether you prioritize looks, function or insurance for your butterfingers, each of these iPad Mini cases has a forte — and a price.

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No Phone Booth Needed

Microsoft Surface 2 and Surface Pro 2: Work Hard, Play Hard

They say it makes Jack a dull boy, the whole single-sided approach to life. We’ll go one further, though, and say that even being able to switch from fun to serious or from any identity to another, for that matter, isn’t all that impressive. Sure, Batman saves lives, fights crime and delivers justice, and sure,…

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Resurfacing

Meet the Microsoft Surface 2 and Surface Pro 2

As a tech-minded individual, you appreciate a solid hands-on experience with any device before you purchase it. You storm your local electronics haunt and play with display models for hours on end before making a decision. But you’re still here reading because you want the deets up front from a reliable (thank you) source. With this in mind, we must first explain that no matter how many of the glorious specifications, design and interface highlights and general accolades we spout over the next page, we simply won’t be able to scratch the surface (huzzah!) of the technological nerdery that makes up Microsoft’s Surface 2 ($449) and Surface Pro 2 ($899) tablets. But are we ever gonna try.

Best-Buy-Promo-Logo-Gear-Patrol This Post is Presented by Best Buy.
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Keep your tablet tickin'

Well Tucked: A Survey of Great iPad Cases

The iPad’s extreme portability is simultaneously glaringly obvious and overlooked in favor of its flashier tech wonders. The take-it-anywhere-ness of the iPad is also perhaps its biggest downside: we tend to treat it like the things it replaced, the books and magazines that we could toss without a care. That usually doesn’t work out well. Here are 30 great options — leather, wool, propped, or otherwise — that should keep your tablet ticking and looking good.

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Skinny, not mini

Sony Xperia Tablet Z

The 1 pound, 6.9mm-thick Sony Xperia Tablet Z pushes gadget bulimia to new lows as the thinnest 10-inch fingerprint magnet on the market. But while the fat’s been trimmed, all the muscle’s still there — including a Qualcomm 1.5GHz processor, 2GB of RAM, 32GB of storage, an 8.1MP Exmor R rear camera, 2MP front camera, NFC, LET, a microSD slot, “S-Force” virtual surround sound and a 10.1-inch full HD screen.

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As if you needed more options

Vizio MT11x Windows 8 Tablet

Tablets tablets everywhere — how’s a man to choose? Vizio’s MT11x Windows 8 slate adds another drop in the bucket of great selections. A full-HD 1080p capacitive touchscreen with 10-finger multi-touch gestures pleases eyeballs from the start; it’s the guts, however, that make the 11.6-inch device a top-line competitor. 64GB SSD storage, AMD’s Z-60 APU…

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Onward and upward... and outward... and sideways...

Lenovo ThinkPad Helix Tablet

The latest member of the ThinkPad family isn’t just a tablet dragging along a keyboard for faster emailing and double the battery power — though its companion QWERTY is certainly good for both of those things. The real kicker? Attaching the 11.6-inch Windows 8 touchscreen device to the keyboard activates a special cooling system in…

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The pick of the little

The Best iPad Mini & Mini Retina Cases

So you managed to score that shiny new iPad Mini. Next step: a case. We’ve saved you hours of SafeSearch Googling by rounding up 30 of the best iPad Mini cases at a variety of price points to help get your new Cupertino buddy from birthday suit to warm and cozy. Whether you prioritize looks, function or insurance for your butterfingers, each of these iPad Mini cases has a forte — and a price. We’ve ordered our selections starting with the most affordable and will update this article as better entries come along. So peruse, hone in, and for god’s sake, cover your shame man.

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Reading the competition like a book

Barnes & Noble Nook HD & HD+

The Barnes & Noble v. Amazon slap-off continues, this time with the brick-and-mortar book giant’s launch of the Nook HD and HD+ Android tablets. The smaller Nook HD ($199+) maintains a similar form factor to its predecessor, the Nook color, with some noted improvements, including a 1440 x 900 display, which gives it the temporary…

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Are you ready for this jelly?

Google Nexus 7

Google’s blessed Nexus line of stock Android phones now finally includes a tablet big brother. The ASUS produced Nexus 7 will be the first device to ship with Android 4.1 a.k.a. Jelly Bean, which promises a slew of enhancements from previous desert OS iterations — particularly when it comes to speed. On the hardware front,…

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Primed for 2012

Asus Transformer Prime Infinity

Last fall, the Asus Eee Pad Transformer Prime became the pace car in the Android tablet rat race. Now just four months later, Asus has announced a new flagship that’s souped-up for 2012, ditches the old vowel-overkill “Eee” brand, and gives previous early adopters the middle finger in the process. The Infinity’s body style is…

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Peer into the future, without the crystal ball

CES 2012: Our Favorite Booths

We kicked off 2012 by visiting not-so-beautiful Las Vegas to attend CES, with the hope of getting a head start on the exciting new products that will launch over the coming year. While we’ll continue to highlight gadgets revealed there on a regular basis, one of the best parts about being on the ground at…

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Who says enterprise has to be dull?

Lenovo IdeaTab K2 & S2 Tablets

Lenovo has made it clear that it intends to grab a piece of the Android pie with its K2 and S2 IdeaTab tablets. Both of the portable, but not groundbreakingly thin, 10.1-inch tablets will run Android 4.0. The higher-end K2 is one of the first tablets to feature a 1080p screen. Nvidia’s quad-core Tegra 3…

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In Living Color

Amazon Kindle Fire

Is it an eReader or a tablet? Kindle or iPad killer? Does it really matter? Packing a dual-core CPU, Gorilla Glass coated multi-touch 7″ IPS panel, and its own special brew of Android, the 14.6 ounce Amazon Kindle Fire ($199) is all about the content. Sure, it may lack some niceties like a camera, mic…

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No Screen Protectors Required

Panasonic Toughbook Tablet

While every other tablet maker has been focused on cramming components into ever-shrinking casings, Panasonic has been hard at work applying the engineering tricks of their Toughbook laptop line to an even more portable device. The result is a newly announced Panasonic Toughbook Android Tablet. Specifics like pricing and what version of Android the device…

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A peek of what's to come?

Asus Padfone

While you were busy BBQ’n with friends and family yesterday, Asus decided to tease the world with the Padfone. Hard facts really aren’t available at this point, but as the picture and videos below illustrate, the main draw of the padfone is its unique tablet shell. We do know the device will run some form…

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What You Need to Know Before Diving In

2011 Tablet Buying Guide

2011 is the year of the tablet, no matter how hard we and our wallets squirm over having another gadget thrust into our lives. But why now? A discussion on that topic could take longer than the birther diatribe if explored in full, but the short answer is we have our smartphones addictions to thank….

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The right play for this book

In-Depth BlackBerry Playbook In-Depth

Photos by Gear Patrol Falling from grace is an experience many businesses never recover from — especially in the vicious world of consumer electronics. BlackBerry, once the darling brand of the technological elite and synonymous with power and status, is working to be the exception. In just a few short years, while companies like Apple,…

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Backup Protection

XGearlive iPad 2 Smart Cover Enhancer

Apple’s new smart covers do a lot of cool things for the iPad 2, but protecting the shiny aluminum back isn’t one of them. The Xgearlive iPad 2 Smart Cover Enhancer ($35) lets you still use that $38 magnetic flap while providing added security against back-stabbing encounters. Made from vaguely described “polycarbonate material” covered with…

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Keep Your Doritos Fingers Away

Acer Iconia 6120 Touchbook

The Acer Iconia-6120 14-Inch Dual-Screen Touchbook ($1,200) is the latest iteration of a budding computing form factor that wants to walk the line between tablets and laptops. Unlike the petite Toshiba Libretto W100, this king of the Iconia series sports two 14-inch Gorilla Glass touch panels that provide plenty of real estate for all manner…

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The Tablet You Love, Take 2

Apple iPad 2

Let the speculation cease. The iPad 2 ($499-$829) is official. Apple’s latest creation features a new A5 dual-core chip, that’s 2x faster than the original and 9x faster graphics performance. A front and rear video camera are now included too, with the latter being capable of recording 720p video at 30fps — implying HD video…

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WebOS Goes Tablet

HP TouchPad

The wait is finally over folks. HP has announced a Web OS 3.0 runnin’-tablet called the the TouchPad, and it looks mighty fine. Its 9.7-inch, 1024×768 XGA multitouch screen, 16 or 32GB of storage, 1.5 pound weight, and 13mm thickness should seem familiar. A 1.2Ghz Snapdragon processor, a 1.3 MP front facing camera for video…

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Gift Guide 2010: The Technophile

As men, we’ll always be suckers for shiny things. There’s no point in fighting it. Particularly when they can help do things like battle our inbox(s), catch up on missed episodes of the shows we’re too busy to watch, or single-handedly sway the tide of battles using just our thumbs. This gift list is a…

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Part Netbook, Part Tablet, All Sexy

Dell Inspiron Duo

Love the idea of a tablet, but can’t bear to part with your keyboard? Well, Dell has heard your plea and developed the “convertible” Inspiron Duo ($550) netbook in the hopes of bringing you the best of both worlds.

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And Then There Were Two

Review: Samsung Galaxy Tab

We opted to wait on covering the most promising tablet device to arrive for Android until it hit shelves. Now the wait is over and you can pick up this 7″ 1024 by 600 multi-touch tablet from T Mobile or Sprint for $399 with a two-year contract. Alternatively you could pay $600 to own the…

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Barnes & Noble Gives E-Ink the Boot

Nook Color from Barnes & Noble

Definitely not an e-reader, and not quite a full-fledged tablet, the newly announced Barnes and Noble’s Nook Color ($250) blends an interesting mix of features that could change the current landscape of gadgets vying to replace your laptop, paperbacks, and magazines.

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Chumby By Way of Sony

Sony Dash Internet Viewer

Back in January, you might have noticed a flurry of online chatter related to the category-bucking Sony Dash. After reviewing the product’s specs and features announced in the device’s initial press release, we were slightly disappointed to learn that the Dash seemed to be positioned really as a jack of all tech trades but master…