6
This content is rated TV-MA, and is for viewers 18 years or older. Are you of age?
Sorry, you are not old enough to view this content.

How To Video: Make Microsoft Surface easier to use

About Video Transcript

How To Video: Make Microsoft Surface easier to use

2:55 /

Three easy tips for improving the usability of the Microsoft Surface tablet and getting the most from the included software.

The Microsoft Surface Tablet bridges the gap between laptop and tablet but it makes a few usability sacrifices along the way. I'm Donald Bell, and in this How To video, I'm gonna show you some easy ways to make the Surface a little easier to use. When I'm placed with this 10.6-inch screen feels particularly crammed is in a traditional desktop view. The texts and icons are extremely tiny here so I suggest bumping it up by holding your finger on the screen for a few seconds. Selecting Personalize then Display. Here you can switch the overall size of things from the default small size up to medium or hit custom to scale things up even further. I personally like how this thing looks like about 150 percent. Hit Apply and let the system sign you out. Log back in and you should see a big improvement, no pun intended. If you're crazy about the touchscreen keyboard, you can fit it around with a few alternative options down here in the corner. But there's an even cooler alternative keyboard that you can pull up with this trick. From the metro view, swipe in from the right and hit Settings, then tap Change PC Settings here on the bottom, select Ease of Access from the menu here on the left and you'll see an option for customizing about what happen when you hold down the Windows button and the volume buttons at the same time. From that drop down menu, select On-screen keyboard. Now, whenever you hold down that Windows button and the volume button in that order, you'll get an overlay keyboard that can resize and has a bunch of neat tricks like predictive texts, function keys and a fade button that allows you to glance on what's behind the keyboard. And to close the keyboard, just use the same Windows Volume key combo. Finally, one of the best features of the surface is that includes a basic preview version of Microsoft Office, but you what's better? The final version. And it's free for you to download if you know where to look. From the metro view, swipe in from the right and tap Search, then type Updates and then select Settings from under the search box. From the results on the left, tap the link for Install Optional Updates that says your system is up to date. Tap the link on the left then check for updates. Now looks like I need a firmware update but I'm gonna take the extra step here to click, See all available updates, and look what we have here. A box to update Microsoft Office to the final version. I can't say they made that easy to find but free is free, so make sure to check and then hit install. So there you go. Three tips that will improve your surface tablet experience. Head over to howto.cnet.com for more tips like these. You can also find more tips from me over on twitter. I'm Donald Bell. See you next time.
  • This is the interactive sidebar!

    Click any icon for more information as they appear--don't worry, we'll pause the video and wait for you to come back.

  • Links Polls Galleries
  • Video Review

New releases

Your holiday packages: One app to track them all
1:02 November 26, 2014
There are already a handful of good apps out there, like ones from UPS and FedEx, to track packages. But there are also apps that can...
Play video
Tomorrow Daily 092: Mistletoe drones, Europa in HD, real-life bacon meme, and more
24:11 November 25, 2014
On today's show, we debate the usefulness of drones inside restaurants (especially drones carrying mistletoe), check out Europa in...
Play video
Amazon Echo: a wireless speaker you can talk to
3:11 November 25, 2014
We go hands-on with Amazon's new Echo smart speaker and its Alexa voice assistant, who might just be Siri's better-sounding twin s...
Play video
2015 Mercedes Benz C400 4MATIC
4:58 November 25, 2014
The C Class is all-new and it's time to stop looking down your nose.
Play video
Can anything save Google Glass?
3:16 November 25, 2014
Google's first wearable platform has lost its edge with users and developers. You won't have a Cartier Android watch anytime soon,...
Play video
Alienware Alpha bridges the PC/console gaming divide
2:38 November 25, 2014
This gaming desktop looks and acts like a living room console, but plays your PC game library.
Play video
How Apple Pay and PayPal can help shoppers avoid hacks
1:37 November 25, 2014
What's the best way to protect yourself when shopping online? CNET's Sumi Das explains how to keep your credit card details away from...
Play video
The 404 Show 1,586: Giving thanks to tech, Jurassic World, BlackBerry Hail Mary (podcast)
35:21 November 25, 2014
It's our last show before Thanksgiving and the guys are discuss what tech they're thankful for.
Play video