iPad 4 vs. Surface RT: Which Tablet Will You Buy?

By Sumit Passary | Dec 13, 2012 12:57 PM EST

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The highly competitive tablet industry is rapidly expanding with new players entering the arena with their devices.

Microsoft recently launched its first tablet line up and the Surface RT tablet has already started to make its way to consumers. The king of tablets, Apple's iPad, also saw the latest fourth-generation iPad 4 with certain improvements from the older version.

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Here is how the iPad 4 compares with the Surface RT.

Form Factor

The Surface RT measures 10.81 x 6.77 x 0.37 inches and weighs 1.50 pounds. The iPad 4 has the same depth as the Surface RT and measures 9.50 x 7.31 x 0.37 inches. The iPad 4 weighs is slightly lighter at 1.46 pounds.


The iPad 4 features a 9.7-inch LED-backlit IPS TFT, capacitive touchscreen with Retina display. The tablet has 2048 x 1536 pixels resolution with 264 ppi. On the other hand, the Surface RT sports a bigger 10.6-inches TFT capacitive touchscreen with 1366 x 768 pixels resolution and 148 ppi.


The iPad 4 includes Apple's own A6X processor, which the company claims is twice as fast compared to its predecessor A5X. A Nvidia Tegra 3 T30 quad-core processor clocked at 1.3GHz powers the Surface RT.


The iPad 4 has 16/32/64GB of on-board storage with no option to expand the memory. Whereas, the Surface RT is available in offers 32/64GB internal storage and users can expand the memory to a further 64GB using a microSD card.


Both the iPad 4 and the Surface RT are equipped with a 1.2-megapixel front-facing camera. However, the iPad 4 has a 5-megapixel rear-facing camera when compared to the low-end 1.2-megapixel rear-facing camera of the Surface RT.

Operating System

The Surface features the Microsoft Windows RT operating system, whereas the iPad 4 packs in the latest iOS 6.

Battery Time

The fourth generation of the iPad has a 42.5 Wh battery which offers 720 hours of standby time and up to 10 hours talk time. The Surface RT uses a 31.5 Wh battery which gives a standby time of up to 360 hours and up to eight hours of talk time.


The iPad 4 is available in black and white options while the Surface RT is available in Dark Titanium color.


The iPad is available with Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and cellular options. The cellular version of the iPad can connect itself to the Internet in the absence of Wi-Fi or a mobile hotspot. On the other hand, the Surface RT has Wi-Fi and Bluetooth but no cellular version, which means that if a user does not have Wi-Fi or a mobile hotspot then the Surface RT cannot be connected to the internet.

The 16GB version of the iPad 4 is available for $499 and the 32GB of the Surface RT is price tagged at $499.

With both tablets offering high-end features, consumers face a difficult task while opting for either the Apple or Microsoft latest offerings. Which tablet do you think you will buy?

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