Head-to-Head: Microsoft Surface Pro vs. Apple iPad 4


The Display

It's going to be hard to beat Apple's Retina display, but Microsoft gives it the old college try. Like its ARM-based Surface RT counterpart, Surface Pro is built around a 10.6-inch HD display with Microsoft ClearType sub-pixel rendering software. The Surface Pro display supports full HD resolution of 1,920 x 1,080, which converts to just shy of 208 pixels per inch. With this custom-made display held at about an arm's length (which Redmond puts at 17 inches), it's impossible for the human eye to discern individual pixels.

Apple's 9.7-inch Retina display puts its pixels where its mouth is, cranking out a dazzling 2,048 x 1,536, or 264 ppi. If you haven't seen one of these, it's really quite striking, particularly when displaying text. Apple provides the greater value in the display arena.

Apple and Microsoft both had originally promised to protect their respective panels with Corning's Gorilla Glass 2.0, but have since removed such language from their websites.