The Only Windows 8 Devices That Matter This Year

Steve BallmerMicrosoft CEO Steve Ballmer

Photo: Flickr/orcmid

As the end of the year nears, if you’re planning on getting someone you love a Windows 8 machine, look no further than this list.Windows 8 is Microsoft’s latest operating system and it brings a lot of changes and improvements. The biggest being a new touch-friendly Start screen that features all your apps.

Along with Windows 8 is a slew of a new devices that range from tablets to convertibles and even hybrid PCs.

There are a lot of devices to choose from, so we sifted through them all to present you with the best ones of around.

Microsoft Surface RT, a good marriage of hardware and software

While the Microsoft Surface may not be selling well (according to some reports), we still think it's a good Windows 8 device. We're big fans of hardware and software coming together in one environment, and we think that the Surface is great for someone who wants an ultra -ortable Windows machine but doesn't want to spend a lot of money.

A neat bonus is that it comes with Microsoft Office for free.

Click here for our review of the Surface RT >

Price: starts at $499 (We suggest you order the optional touch keyboard for an extra $149.)

Samsung ATIV Smart PC, super light and portable.

The Ativ is a tablet that converts to a PC. The Ativ is great because it has a long battery life, getting you 8.9 hours unplugged.

The Ativ sports an 11-inch screen and weighs 1.16 pounds. If you're not a fan of touch, it includes Samsung's S Pen stylus, making it easy to draw or write notes.

Price: Starts at $649, we suggest the cheaper model.

Lenovo IdeaPad Yoga, the tablet that twists, turns, and bends.

The IdeaPad Yoga is one of the best Windows 8 devices out right now and one of the best-reviewed.

The Yoga is a laptop-tablet hybrid. Its 13-inch screen can fold backwards and forward allowing it to prop itself up or turn into a traditional laptop.

There are many variations of the device, so you can really make it as powerful or as basic as you want.

Price: starts at $999

Lenovo Twist, a perfect convertible for business users.

The ThinkPad twist is another excellent Windows 8 offering from Lenovo. This one is aimed primarily at business users who need something reliable and functional.

The Twist weighs in at 3.48 pounds. The twisting mechanism is sturdy and the display is smooth and responsive.

Price: $849

Dell XPS 12 Ultrabook, the funkiest designed hybrid we've seen

Dell's XPS Duo convertible is the first of its kind. The notebook has a swivel screen, which flips around to resemble either a tablet or a laptop. The XPS Duo was made for Windows 8 and fully supports the operating system's touch interface.

Budget shoppers beware: The XPS Duo isn't cheap. It starts at $1,199.99. For that, you get a 12.5-inch display with a resolution of 1920x1080, an Intel Core i5 Ivy Bridge processor with an integrated Intel HD 4000 graphics card, and 4GB of RAM. It weighs 3.4 pounds

For users who want a bit more power, Dell also offers the XPS Duo with a 1.9 GHz Intel Core i7 processor for $1,699.

ASUS Zenbook Touch, one of the best designed Windows 8 devices available

The Zenbook Touch is razor-thin and powerful. The 15.6-inch ultrabook can wake from sleep in less than two seconds.

The Zenbook's primary specs include an Intel i7 processor, optional multitouch screen, a 1920x1080 resolution, a 7 hour battery, 128GB solid-state hard drive, Bluetooth 4.0, an illuminated keyboard, HD 720p camera, and built-in Bowers & Wilkins audio system with external subwoofer.

Available ports include a mini VGA, three USB 3.0, HDMI out, and an SD card reader.

Pricing and availability aren't known at this time. But you can get more information over at Asus's site

The Toshiba Satellite U925t slides from tablet to PC

The Toshiba Satellite U925t is one of the most unique Windows 8 devices we've seen. The device slides up to reveal a keyboard and then can be propped and used like a laptop.

If you want, you can even use the U925t as a tablet. This one is a bit heavy though so if you're looking for something extremely portable you may want to look elsewhere.

Click here for our full review of the Satellite U925t >

Price: $1,149.99

ASUS VivoTab RT has incredible battery life

The Vivo RT features a 10.1-inch multi-touch IPS display (1366 x 768 resolution), 2GB RAM, 32GB storage, 12-core GPU, 8MP rear camera, 2MP front camera, WiFi, Bluetooth 4.0, and GPS.

If you opt to get the Vivo Tab make sure you get the keyboard dock it extends the battery life from 10.5 hours all the way up to 19 hours and gives you two USb ports.

Price: Starts at $599

Now check out some Windows 8 Tips and Tricks...

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