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Apple iPad vs Microsoft Surface RT vs Google Nexus 10 head to head review

Apple iPad vs Microsoft Surface RT vs Google Nexus 10 three-quarter view

Screen technology has become a key battleground in the device market. This started when Apple released its iPad with retina display earlier this year, claiming it was the clearest screen ever featured on a tablet or mobile device.

Since then every tablet manufacturer has looked to match or even beat the new iPad's 9.7in, 1536x2048 pixels, 264 ppi screen's performance. Keeping up this tradition, Google released the Nexus 10 touting its screen as the best currently used in a tablet.

Having put the screen to the test we have to concede there is some truth to Google's boast. As well as being very sharp, with icons, images and text appearing crystal clear even when zoomed in on, the Nexus 10's 10in 2,560x1,600 299ppi resolution display is brilliantly bright and vibrant.Apple iPad vs Microsoft Surface RT vs Google Nexus 10

Putting it head to head with the Apple iPad, testing the two by downloading high resolution images of a number of famous works of art, we found the Nexus 10's screen to be slightly better - though this was only after a prolonged period of staring intently at both screens and in general they are both close to identical when it comes to performance.

Below the two, the Surface easily sat in third place. This is because its 10.6in, 1366x768 pixels 148ppi touch screen, while more than usable, looks significantly duller and less crisp than the Nexus 10's and Apple iPad's displays.

Winner: The Nexus 10

Like their designs, the Nexus 10, iPad and Surface all run using radically different operating systems. The Nexus 10 features Google's latest Android 4.2 Jelly Bean OS, while the iPad runs using iOS 6 and the Surface Microsoft's Windows RT.

As we've said in past head to heads, picking between the Nexus 7's Jelly Bean and iPad's iOS 6 operating systems is a challenge. This is because the answer to which is better largely depends on which ecosystem you're already embedded in.

The iPad's iOS 6 operating system is great for those with other Apple devices. The operating system originally arrived on the iPhone 5 and added new iCloud integration features that help users share data across all their Apple products.

For example, the Safari web browser pre-installed on all Apple products can be set up to automatically open web pages loaded on a Mac computer on any iPhone or iPad synchronised with the user's iCloud account.

While it sounds small, we found the feature was useful when attempting to conduct research on the move, allowing us to continue researching an article we'd began working on at home when commuting to the office.

Next: Software (continued)


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Alastair Stevenson

Alastair has worked as a reporter covering security and mobile issues at V3 since March 2012. Before entering the field of journalism Alastair had worked in numerous industries as both a freelance copy writer and artist.

View Alastair's Google+ profile

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