I am sure the surface pro has a potential to chnage the way people use tablets, and possibly that will eat into the notebook PCs. But as Caleb pointed out here, the clincher here is, as Calebl pointed out:
If only it had a battery that lasted more than a few hours.
I see a lot of people here arguing over wether tablets are consumption devices or creation devices. Up to this point, this has been largely decided by the application makers. The fact is, while your tablet may not be a workstation equivalent, it is actually quite capable of doing many work tasks. It is the software creators or app creators who are deciding what you will do with it.
The surface pro has a ton of potential to change how people utilize tablets. The transition from work to play, stationary to mobile should be seamless. If only it had a battery that lasted more than a few hours.
Umm i haven't see cpu intensive benches in power measurements of nexus 7, moreover it is not "in total" but instead without screen.
Geekbench is only a small syntetic bench not a thermal virus.
Krait series is in the 0.7-1.3W/core ballpark, depending on clock speed, like ARM says officially in it's own public presentations. So a Snapdragon 600 at 1.5Ghz likely draws around 3.5W under full cpu load. Snapdragon 800 2.3Ghz draws around 5.2W only considering the cores, a lot more with GPU running.
About BayTrail performance, i don't think a syntetic bench, done so so by an unknown geek is the best manner to judge a cpu. I believe that SPEC is the best and looking at the results around the web, Silvermont core seems clock to clock faster than A15, so your claims about the high clock speed to mach the competition have not common sense.
For your information Baytrail Z series has a TDP of 3W and 2W SDP. Your figure is for the D series, aimed for desktop applications.
Win8 tablets are effectively PCs indeed, however I very much doubt it will help overall PC sales. My bet is that Win8 tablets will eat marketshare from laptops just like laptops did from desktops, so the overall PC market will continue its slow but inevitable decline. Surface Pro didn't sell well and Bay Trail will be slower than the i5 currently used, so I don't see why it is more suitable for content creation or why it will sell better.
Meanwhile Android and iOS continue to grow to new heights. The fact is we no longer need x86 or Windows to do useful work. For example, the most popular laptop on Amazon is the Cortex-A15 based Chromebook.
You're right about the benchmarking fiasco - really unbleviable its still happening these days.
I'm not alone in my enthusiasm for Bay Trail and Intel's prospects in the Win 89 tablet market. It's only competiton is AMD, and I think there will be a strong demand within enterprise and prosumers for a Win8 tablet. Also, FYI, we (and I think some other research firms) are counting the Win8-based tablets as PCs, and with that policy we (and others) will start to show improved "PC" sales.
Jon, the benchmark was discredited precisely because Intel was cheating it. Intel has a long history of artificially inflating benchmark scores using their ICC compiler. So far there have been a few Geekbench results leaked for Bay Trail. As can be predicted from its limited out-of-order microarchitecture, Bay Trail has lower IPC than the aggressive OoO Cortex-A15, and can only compete at higher frequencies. However it requires a lot of power at high frequencies, eg. the quad 1.9GHz E3840 has a 10W TDP! Compare that with the new Nexus 7 tablet which Anand measured as using 2W in total when running CPU intensive benchmarks.
So you could say that Bay Trail finally narrows the large gap in performance between the current Atom and ARM cores. However calling it a "game changer" is rather premature and wishful thinking.
A tablrt is too big to take with you onto a bus from suburb to the city. I have observed most people on the bus are using smart phones. But many home users do not need a PC: it is overkill for them. They might be tablet guys if the tablets would be cheaper. Now you can buy a PC for $329. iPad is $400 - 600. So is problem of price: the tablets are going to replace PCs at home if all you need is to get your email or surf Internet. For now laptops are preferable for students and even professionals/
I think 4G, 5G, and beyond, we will enable more content creation from mobile computers (smart phone/tablets). The ergonomic question will get resolved through standard keyboard, mouse and display clip-ons to mobile computers and the computing power question will get resolved through high bandwidth cloud services.
Unlike many here, I think the PC as we know it today will be a thing of the past sooner than many people predict. For consumers' sake, I hope Intel and Microsoft will be just one of many many players in the new era. I actually think that's how it will pan out in the end.
I have been on the Media Consumption side of this argument for quite some time, but perhaps my view of Content Creation is biased due to my engineering viewpoint.
What if the vast majority of Content being created is now for Facebook, Youtube, Blogs and similar "small" productions. The content from engineers, high end graphics designers and video productions may not be generated with a tablet for quite a while but the vast majority of "content" may actually be in reach. They may also be in reach of an advanced cell phone too!