3 mistakes everyone makes with Microsoft Surface 2-in-1 PCs

Tips and tricks to help you make the most out of your Microsoft Surface Pro or your Microsoft Surface Go

Best 2-in-1 laptops: Man using Windows Surface 2-in-1 laptop with cup of coffee
(Image credit: Surface on Unsplash.com)

Microsoft Surface Pro devices are the amongst the best 2-in-1 laptops because they work just as well as a tablet as they do a PC, partly down to the fact that they run on the Windows operating system. 

Whether you own one of the older models like the Microsoft Surface Pro 7, the shiny new Microsoft Surface Pro 9 or the budget Microsoft Surface Go 2, you will need to invest in a separate snap-on keyboard to make the most out of it. Not only will that allow you to use the slate more effectively as a laptop but it will also act as a protective cover, and some come even with a stylus included as well. 

It would be a huge mistake not to invest in a keyboard for your Microsoft Surface 2-in-1 PC, so much so that I can't imagine it's a mistake many people would make. But there are a few other oversights a lot of people are likely to make. Here's what they are. 

Not using it as an external monitor

Not only can you use the Microsoft Surface Pro devices as a tablet and a laptop, but you can actually hook it up to your other computers or devices and use it as an external monitor to extend your display.

To set it up, on your desktop PC, type in Projection Settings then follow the steps to add the Wireless Display feature. Once that's done, tap the Windows key and P at the same time and Connect to a Wireless Display. In doing so, you'll see the Surface listed. When you select it, a code will come up on the Surface which you'll need to enter on your main PC. After that, you'll be able to extend your screen using the same prompt as before, that being the Windows key and P.

Not making use of a stylus

The great thing about Microsoft Surface devices is that they work really well as a tablet, but without a stylus, you won't be making the most out of that. 

The touchscreen is responsive and the kickstand means you can prop it up at any angle while you draw, sketch or take notes. For the most precise and accurate control over the screen, you will absolutely need the Surface Pen or the Slim Pen 2 that comes with the Surface Pro Type Cover. 

Not using your Android phone from it

By hooking up your Android phone to your Microsoft Surface device, you'll open up the door to managing your phone notifications, viewing your recent photos, making calls and answering your messages all without having to reach for your handset

To get this feature up and running type Your Phone into the search bar. You'll then need to open up your browser on your handset and enter the web address given. Download the app and follow the instructions to pair your smartphone using a QR code.

Yasmine Crossland
Freelance Tech Expert

Yasmine is the former Reviews Writer for T3, so she's been knee-deep in the latest tech products for reviewing and curating into the best buying guides since she started in 2019. She keeps a finger on the pulse when it comes to the most exciting and innovative tech and is happy to tell you exactly what she thinks about it too. In her free time, you'll catch her travelling the globe – the perks of being a freelance tech expert – tending to her plants when at home and, but of course, planning her next big trip.