You buy a tablet with 32GB of storage slapped on the box and, with allowance for the operating system, a few built in apps and the slight binary loss of usable storage space, you’d expect to find something at least close to 32GB of usable storage space for the end user, wouldn’t you? 28 or 29, maybe even 25 gigabytes would be acceptable. But 16GB of user storage from a tablet sold as a 32GB model? That’s a joke.
And it’s a joke being played on owners of a Microsoft Surface RT tablet. Once Windows RT, Microsoft’s Office apps, 8GB of other pre-installed apps, 5GB of Windows recovery tools and that binary storage loss has eaten into the built-in storage allowance, all you’re left with from a “32GB” Surface RT tablet is roughly 16GB.
Compare that to iOS, which leaves a 32GB iPad with 29GB, and Android, which leaves a 16GB Nexus 7 with 13GB, and you’re left with a far bigger storage footprint from Microsoft’s software.
Seeing as the 32GB size at a price lower than Apple’s comparative 32GB iPad is one of Surface’s main selling points, it’s an issue that should be communicated better to potential buyers. Sure, the Surface RT supports microSD cards and Skydrive cloud storage (among other cloud-based services), but that’ll come as small comfort to those feeling duped by Microsoft’s marketing.