Geared Up Podcast: Hands-on with the Surface Go and a preview of the fall smartphone lineup

Listen to this podcast episode:

The Microsoft Surface Go isn’t quite a tablet and isn’t quite a laptop, and that’s the weird thing about it. (GeekWire Photo / Clare McGrane)

Microsoft is aiming for a new niche with its latest device, the Surface Go, but will they find it? Geared Up co-host Todd Bishop has been testing the device and gives us his review on this episode of GeekWire.

The strangest thing about the Go is its use case. It’s basically a “tablet plus,” Todd says, a tablet that can become something a bit more functional for occasions like paying bills or firing off a few emails. But for most people, it’s not as functional as a laptop and more expensive than a tablet, so it sits in a strange place.

Speaking of the price, the device itself sells for $399, which is $70 more than the entry-level iPad currently costs. Plus, an attachable keyboard and bluetooth mouse will cost you another $100 and $50, respectively. Without the keyboard, the Go loses its laptop-like functionality, Todd says, making the cost add up quickly.

His takeaway? The Go is great for some specific situations, like a family vacation, but probably won’t be the first choice for most people.

Also on this week’s show, we take an early look at the Samsung Note 9, which is the next top-tier device from the smartphone maker. It has some strange specs that might not serve it well. We also look at mock-ups of the new iPhones, which will likely be released next month.

Plus, we have a new gadget game: What’s in Todd’s closet?

This week’s stories: