The Good Asus' Vivo Tab RT features the Windows RT's elegant and refreshing user interface, has a bright and rich screen, and is equipped with a keyboard dock for maximizing productivity.
The Bad The Vivo Tab RT's keyboard is cramped, its operating system takes some time to get used to, and both its app store and Desktop interface are severely limited.
The Bottom Line With its vivid screen, sturdy build, and sleek user interface, the Asus Vivo Tab RT is an excellent tablet in its own right -- but it can't beat the innovative Microsoft Surface RT.
Great, but doesn't quite breach the Surface
Even though Microsoft's Surface gets the lion's share of the press, it's not the only tablet running the pared-down. The Asus Vivo Tab RT will be one of four going head-to-head with Microsoft's tablet this fall.
And while it doesn't best the Surface altogether, particularly when considering its inferior typing experience and smaller screen, it comes pretty damn close.
The Asus unit will cost $599 for the 32GB version, and $699 for 64GB. That's $100 more than the $499 Surface RT (also 32GB), but Asus includes a keyboard dock, which is an optional accessory with the Surface. (However, if you do want to buy the two components separately, it'll be initially sold as a Wi-Fi-only device when it hits stores on October 26, but AT&T will offer a 4G LTE version "in the near future.")
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