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Poll

What should I buy that is currently available?

ipad
8 (27.6%)
PC tablet
8 (27.6%)
Netbook
7 (24.1%)
Other (please specify)
3 (10.3%)
monitor arms + tweed suit
3 (10.3%)

Total Members Voted: 29

Last post Author Topic: Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?  (Read 49506 times)

superboyac

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Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?
« on: August 04, 2010, 09:05:24 AM »
I have about $700 to spend.  I was initially going to get an ipad to do some computing on the run.  basically, just act like a notepad, some internet browsing, some reading.  I'm not expecting too much else.  I'm not planning on using it to do a lot of work on it.  For that, I have my super PC at home.

Like I said, I was going to get an ipad, but then I started reading around here and the web and there are some other alternatives.  I like the idea of a Linux or Android tablet because it probably means I can customize it for my needs better.  But I do want to easy and very nice interface of the ipad.  I don't want some klunky windows tablet, like I remember years ago.  Say what you want about apple, but the user interface is very smooth and I like it.  Of course, i've seen some android phones that are smooth also.  All I'm saying is that I do care about that.  i don't want a really powerful tablet that doesn't respond well to the finger movements and so forth.

wraith808

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Re: Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?
« Reply #1 on: August 04, 2010, 09:14:31 AM »
The tablet pc doesn't have a clunky interface- it's actually a lot more elegant with the right software installed.  I'm trying to catch up on my blogging, and I'll show you some things that really blew the iPad out of the water- and this is from my friends that have iPads!

In the end the decision between a tablet pc and an ipad consists of two things apart from functionality that I've found: weight and convenience.  The tc1100 is the same form factor as the iPad- it's just thicker.  But that thickness is weight.  Then the convenience and weight converge when you get to endurance.  If you're going to be on the run a lot, and want to be able to grab the device and know that it's more than likely charged, the iPad is going to do that for you.  So far, I've been able to get about 3 hours on the Tablet.  It hasn't shut down, but it's been pretty close by the time I plugged it in.  Another battery will either have longer life, or I'll be swapping them (they're warm swappable from what I understand).  So that's more convenience lost, and more weight to carry.

There are other differences, but this is the main one in my eyes.  So if you're going to be using it away from home for extended periods, the iPad might be better for you (or maybe one of the newer tablets- I don't know what battery life is going to be like on those).  If you're just going to be using it around the house and taking it out occasionally, then one of the tablet pcs gives you a *lot* more functionality.

(Oh... and I didn't vote :))
« Last Edit: August 05, 2010, 08:32:45 AM by wraith808 »

phitsc

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Re: Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?
« Reply #2 on: August 04, 2010, 09:24:43 AM »
If I had $700 to spend (which I have not) and wouldn't want to wait until early next years arrival of Android-based competition (which I probably will) I'd buy an iPad. I think it's a nice device for what you (and me, and everyone else ;) ) want to use it for. My main complaints with it: somewhat restrictive concerning data-syncing (iTunes etc.), price and weight. I don't mean to say that the price would not be justified, or that it's too heavy to use. I'd rather like both of these attributes to be a bit lower ;)
« Last Edit: August 04, 2010, 09:27:03 AM by phitsc »

Deozaan

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Re: Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?
« Reply #3 on: August 04, 2010, 11:34:18 PM »
Admittedly I'm not as well informed on the issue for my opinion to be of much value to you, but assuming similar hardware specs (to the iPad), I'd go for an Android tablet.


superboyac

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Re: Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?
« Reply #4 on: August 05, 2010, 08:58:11 AM »
If I had $700 to spend (which I have not) and wouldn't want to wait until early next years arrival of Android-based competition (which I probably will) I'd buy an iPad. I think it's a nice device for what you (and me, and everyone else ;) ) want to use it for. My main complaints with it: somewhat restrictive concerning data-syncing (iTunes etc.), price and weight. I don't mean to say that the price would not be justified, or that it's too heavy to use. I'd rather like both of these attributes to be a bit lower ;)
Let's say i wait...how long until Android tablets are available?  Would Android be better than a Win7 tablet, like the HP Slate?

Admittedly I'm not as well informed on the issue for my opinion to be of much value to you, but assuming similar hardware specs (to the iPad), I'd go for an Android tablet.
Sounds good to me, I just want to know how long I have to wait.  There's a cutoff point.  if it's like next August, I can't wait that long.

phitsc

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Re: Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?
« Reply #5 on: August 05, 2010, 09:21:56 AM »
Here's a list of iPad alternatives. No release dates though. I've read end of year for the MSI and first quarter 2010 for the Asus, but no confirmed dates yet.

Is Android better for tablets than Windows 7. To be honest, I have no idea. I'll read reviews about these devices before deciding for one anyway.

superboyac

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Re: Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?
« Reply #6 on: August 05, 2010, 09:34:32 AM »
OK, now I'm sort of leaning towards a new laptop...11-13" range.  i don't know.  I do kind of want a tablet.  Something I can carry around with me to do light computing.  I already have a laptop and it's not easy to use for light computing.  If you want to just browse the web for 5 minutes, you hesitate to open the laptop, boot it, etc.  With a tablet, you'd just quickly do your thing and that's it.

I'm also hearing that Android tablets may not be as smooth as the ipad, as far as UI, because the Android is not officially a tablet OS.  It can be "hacked" to be used as one, but it's not designed for that.  Is that any cause for concern?  Should I just get an ipad?

phitsc

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Re: Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?
« Reply #7 on: August 05, 2010, 09:56:45 AM »
I'm also hearing that Android tablets may not be as smooth as the ipad, as far as UI, because the Android is not officially a tablet OS.  It can be "hacked" to be used as one, but it's not designed for that.  Is that any cause for concern?  Should I just get an ipad?

It might be one of the reasons why there are no Android-based tablets yet. I've read that Android 3, planned to be released end-of-year-ish, should be targeted at higher end portable devices (i.e. tablets).

Stoic Joker

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Re: Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?
« Reply #8 on: August 05, 2010, 10:10:50 AM »
If you want to just browse the web for 5 minutes, you hesitate to open the laptop, boot it, etc.  With a tablet, you'd just quickly do your thing and that's it.

So you're saying that the tablets have the boot time of a light bulb?? <- Seriously, I'm curious/don't recall hearing that angle before)

While I currently don't have a budget, as it's pointless to create a plan to spend nothing... If forced to pick at this point, I'd go for one of the netbooks as a best of both worlds option. Mainly because you can just fold it shut (so the screen is protected), toss it where ever and go. Thre is no need to futz with some manner of bag/case/cover to prevent the ($$$) screen from being destroyed.

wraith808

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Re: Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?
« Reply #9 on: August 05, 2010, 10:49:27 AM »
OK, now I'm sort of leaning towards a new laptop...11-13" range.  i don't know.  I do kind of want a tablet.  Something I can carry around with me to do light computing.  I already have a laptop and it's not easy to use for light computing.  If you want to just browse the web for 5 minutes, you hesitate to open the laptop, boot it, etc.  With a tablet, you'd just quickly do your thing and that's it.
This is why I was looking at the tablet, and finally purchased one.  I got a netbook for this purpose, but the form factor kept it from being used in this way.  The tablet form factor just lends itself to writing and reading, IMO.  That's also what I like about the tc1100- the keyboard is *really* thin, and swings out of the way (or removes) very quickly, but it's there if you need it.

I took some pictures this morning for my upcoming blog posts- I'll post a few here for a preview :)

DSC05035.pngShould I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?
DSC05034.pngShould I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?
DSC05039.pngShould I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?

If you want to just browse the web for 5 minutes, you hesitate to open the laptop, boot it, etc.  With a tablet, you'd just quickly do your thing and that's it.

So you're saying that the tablets have the boot time of a light bulb?? <- Seriously, I'm curious/don't recall hearing that angle before)

iPads do.  And tablet pcs from standby aren't much behind that if you limit what starts up and optimize it for this use.
« Last Edit: August 05, 2010, 10:52:11 AM by wraith808 »

cyberdiva

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Re: Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?
« Reply #10 on: August 05, 2010, 10:55:31 AM »
Superboyac, I don't own an iPad and have no plans to buy one, but I came upon an article today entitled "Five iPad Applications I Can't Live Without...and Why" that I thought you might find useful.  It was on the ProfHacker blog at http://chronicle.com/blogPost/5-iPad-Applications-I-Cant/25907/

Darwin

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Re: Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?
« Reply #11 on: August 05, 2010, 06:44:55 PM »
superboyac - I'd wait. Let the mania surrounding the iPad die down AND give the competition some time to release their own tablets. I've played with an iPad and was impressed with it, despite the lack of Flash support and the lack of multi-tasking. I wonder, though, if you wouldn't be just as happy with an iPod Touch/iPhone or an Android phone? I don't own either, but from what I gather they all provide a decent online experience, access to e-mail, and extensive note-taking capabilities - ideal and convenient for on the road use.
"Some people have a way with words, other people,... oh... have not way" - Steve Martin

superboyac

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Re: Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?
« Reply #12 on: August 05, 2010, 10:16:47 PM »
Superboyac, I don't own an iPad and have no plans to buy one, but I came upon an article today entitled "Five iPad Applications I Can't Live Without...and Why" that I thought you might find useful.  It was on the ProfHacker blog at http://chronicle.com/blogPost/5-iPad-Applications-I-Cant/25907/
Thanks!  I love the descriptions of those apps.  I was moving away from the ipad, but now I want to try those out.  I think I've pretty much figured out what I want from my new device:
--$1000 max ($700 preferred)
--very fast boot or "on" time.  If there's any significant delay, I'd just prefer to use my fully featured laptop
--Simple on-the-run applications: notetaking is a must (evernote, I was thinking), web browsing of course, file viewing and reading (pdf's, ebooks, text files, usb or files explorer), music/video playing for when bored or on the toilet, wifi mandatory but I don't need any cell phone services at all.

I have an uber computer at home, a good work computer, and a laptop.  I need something else that is an instant-on cell-phone-like device, but with a bigger screen.  The ipad is really just the thing.  The only problem is it being an Apple product.  i'd much prefer a more customizeable environment.  But that's the tradeoff.  I don't believe I can have everything that I am used to on a pc (and I have LOTS of stuff) and expect to have all that on a tablet.  i really want it as my out and about toy.  That's all.

The other thing is that I don't want to wait too long because then I'll just wait forever.  if something great comes out later, i'll get that also regardless of whether I have an ipad or not.  And the money is a gift, and though I can invest it like a "smart" person would, I wouldn't be following the intent of the gift.  I want to get an unnecessary item...a luxury...an absurd/expensive toy.  I'm far too boring and practical 99% of the time.

I think I have settled on the 32gb or 64gb ipad (wifi, NO 3g).  That's either $600 or $700.

I'd much prefer to get an Android thing.  But one thing I want to experience for ONCE in my life as a pc user is a super-duper-smooth interface.  i don't want any hint of klunkiness.  And we can all agree that Apple is the king when it comes to that.  The android tablets, from everything I've heard, still don't offer the smoothness of an ipad.

Believe me, I hate the thought of buying an Apple product more so than anyone.  But I'm sticking to my guns: i want a pleasure-filled, super smooth, no tweaking necessary interface just once.

I'll wait until October, maximum.  Then I'm buying.  october is my birthday anyway.

phitsc

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Re: Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?
« Reply #13 on: August 06, 2010, 02:18:30 AM »
I am very certain that the Android tablets to come will offer an experience just as smooth as an iPad's. But I seriously doubt that any of these will be available as soon as October. So go ahead and buy an iPad (or wait till October to buy one). I'm sure you will not regret it :Thmbsup:.

superboyac

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Re: Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?
« Reply #14 on: August 06, 2010, 08:42:19 AM »
wraith!  Thanks for posting those pictures.  We actually had one of those models years ago in my first company.  We didn't end up using it much because of a lot of reasons.  It's amazing how time flies!  I still find it shocking that apple, several years after the tablets started coming out, was able to implement in a form that made it usuable.  Not that the Hp is not usable.  But that whole instant-on, lightweight, minimalist design.  It's the same thing with the ipod...mp3 players were out for years, yet apple grabbed that market with the ipod by doing it in a way that appealed to more people.  Sony should have never let that market go.  They had it way back in the early 90's when they invented the discman.  But they never had the proper vision.

superboyac

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Re: Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?
« Reply #15 on: August 06, 2010, 08:49:31 AM »
I am very certain that the Android tablets to come will offer an experience just as smooth as an iPad's. But I seriously doubt that any of these will be available as soon as October. So go ahead and buy an iPad (or wait till October to buy one). I'm sure you will not regret it :Thmbsup:.
i think i will.  Like I said, if something really nice comes out in the next year or two, I'll get that also.  Besides, if i don't like the ipad or use it much, I'll give it to my mom and take her laptop, which is a little newer than mine and can do my gig musician software (whereas my current laptop cannot handle it).  So that's the secret plan!  I think my mom would really like the ipad.  My little sister already fell in love with her new iphone.

What I'm really waiting for is the thing mouser mentioned here a while back: an 8.5x11 (viewable) tablet with a lightweight, slim design and instant-on features, and long battery life.  That's the one I'll get for sure.

wraith808

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Re: Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?
« Reply #16 on: August 06, 2010, 08:51:31 AM »
wraith!  Thanks for posting those pictures.  We actually had one of those models years ago in my first company.  We didn't end up using it much because of a lot of reasons.  It's amazing how time flies!  I still find it shocking that apple, several years after the tablets started coming out, was able to implement in a form that made it usuable.  Not that the Hp is not usable.  But that whole instant-on, lightweight, minimalist design.  It's the same thing with the ipod...mp3 players were out for years, yet apple grabbed that market with the ipod by doing it in a way that appealed to more people.  Sony should have never let that market go.  They had it way back in the early 90's when they invented the discman.  But they never had the proper vision.

What I find shocking is that using the iPad vs using the HP... other than weight, battery life, and the instant on factor... isn't *that* much more advanced than the HP.  And I'm tackling instant on and battery life next.  From what I've read, upgrading to an SSD (which is what the iPad has over the HP) makes a world of difference to battery life and the time to resume from standby.  And I've also read that adding Windows 7 makes it that much better, and I have a copy around here somewhere that I never used...  ;)

superboyac

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Re: Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?
« Reply #17 on: August 06, 2010, 09:03:09 AM »
wraith!  Thanks for posting those pictures.  We actually had one of those models years ago in my first company.  We didn't end up using it much because of a lot of reasons.  It's amazing how time flies!  I still find it shocking that apple, several years after the tablets started coming out, was able to implement in a form that made it usuable.  Not that the Hp is not usable.  But that whole instant-on, lightweight, minimalist design.  It's the same thing with the ipod...mp3 players were out for years, yet apple grabbed that market with the ipod by doing it in a way that appealed to more people.  Sony should have never let that market go.  They had it way back in the early 90's when they invented the discman.  But they never had the proper vision.

What I find shocking is that using the iPad vs using the HP... other than weight, battery life, and the instant on factor... isn't *that* much more advanced than the HP.  And I'm tackling instant on and battery life next.  From what I've read, upgrading to an SSD (which is what the iPad has over the HP) makes a world of difference to battery life and the time to resume from standby.  And I've also read that adding Windows 7 makes it that much better, and I have a copy around here somewhere that I never used...  ;)
I like your idea a lot.  The only thing holding me back from that is the weight.  It's too heavy, that thing.

See, now I'm moving away from the ipad again.  I was just reading about this on the ipad forum:
Quote
The version of iTunes I have installed is one i downloaded from itunes.com a few days ago, and it was a fresh installation. The account is the same too. It really doesn't matter though, cuz the iPad is out of my hands, so I can uninstall this POS.

Anyway, I updated iTunes on my dad's machine today, and set it up to manually sync, because my stepmom has an iPod and my dad doesn't want her music synching to his iPad. I then tried to sync the iPad. It says that the iPad can only be synced with one iTunes library and wants to erase everything on the iPad, presumably because I had previously synced it to my own computer. GRRRRR!!! (Oh, and did I mention that I HATE iTunes? It is the bane of my existence. This kind of stupidity is a prime example of engineers who deserve to be beaten to death.) So I found a link on the Apple support site that shows you how to right click on the device and transfer purchases, which I did, but it's still prompting me to erase the contents of the iPad when I try to put anything on it, even though the computer is authorized. Now I don't know what to do

With my Android phone, I plug it in via USB, it shows up as a drive letter, and I just copy over what I want... no software required. Why is this so complicated? Don't get me wrong... I'm not an Android fanboy and really like the iPad, but iTunes has got to go. It's a lot like an airplane - it works fine as long as you leave it on autopilot, but if you need to take manual control for some reason, you'd better know what you're doing, or else you're going to run it into the ground.
When is the earliest decent android tablet coming out?

phitsc

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Re: Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?
« Reply #18 on: August 06, 2010, 09:26:01 AM »
That sounds like a problem you should never encounter with your new iPad and no one you have to share it with :).

A friend of mine first used his company's iPad to try it out. He also bought some apps and he has an iPod as well. Once he decided to get his own iPad he could just transfer the apps he had bought to his new iPad (don't know how exactly that works) and I'm quite sure that he doesn't sync his whole music library to his iPad. I've never heard him complain about anything related to his iPad in fact.


Concerning the date when the earliest decent android tablet is coming out: that's something I'd like to know as well! But I fear it could only be towards the end of year, or even beginning of the next :(

superboyac

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Re: Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?
« Reply #19 on: August 06, 2010, 10:35:48 AM »
I may...MAY...wait for the Notion Ink Adam to come out next month.  If it gets favorable reviews, I'll wait until December to get the 10" version.

daddydave

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Re: Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?
« Reply #20 on: August 06, 2010, 10:54:06 AM »
Quote
Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?

The way I would answer that question would be heavily weighted toward which one has the applications I want to run, and the best development environment to lure developers from all corners.
If bad things happen to other people, it's karma. If bad things happen to me, it's kismat!

wraith808

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Re: Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?
« Reply #21 on: August 06, 2010, 10:59:42 AM »
Quote
Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?

The way I would answer that question would be heavily weighted toward which one has the applications I want to run, and the best development environment to lure developers from all corners.

This. That was how I looked at it.  Also the use case, i.e. carrying it around all the time, or a living room type luxury device.

superboyac

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Re: Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?
« Reply #22 on: August 06, 2010, 11:22:24 AM »
Well, i do plan to carry it around all the time.  I also want to use it in other people's living rooms when I am bored.  I don't need much from it.  Email, notetaking (simple, Evernote-ish), web browsing, music listening, video watching.  I'd like to be able to stick a usb drive in and browse the file contents also and even transfer some files back and forth.  That's pretty much it.  I save all my heavy computing for my home computer.

The other weird thing about me: I don't have a smartphone.  A lot of people who know me think I do, but I don't.  I have a Blackberry pearl with NO data plan.  I don't text.  I have 5 minute conversations max.  I don't like to do anything like that when I'm out and about, especially with people.  There are only a handful of people in the world who have seen me answer my cell phone in front of them.

wraith808

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Re: Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?
« Reply #23 on: August 06, 2010, 11:46:56 AM »
The bag I purchased is
http://www.ebags.com...-netbook-pack/145502

With that, I carry it around with me.  It is heavier than the iPad (as you know), but it works for me.  I actually bought that bag just as I was about to get the iPad, and thankfully it worked for the tc1100.

One point:
I'd like to be able to stick a usb drive in and browse the file contents also and even transfer some files back and forth.

You can't do that with the iPad.  I'd planned to use my jungle disk account and dropbox for the heavy lifting where file storage is concerned, which is why I'd decided to go with the 16GB version; as I didn't plan to do heavy media consumption, I just didn't need the space.

superboyac

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Re: Should I buy a tablet pc, ipad, netbook, or other?
« Reply #24 on: August 06, 2010, 12:13:07 PM »
I'd planned to use my jungle disk account and dropbox for the heavy lifting where file storage is concerned
You know what I use for this stuff?  HFS.  I set up my own file server at home and use the web interface.  I really like it.

however, one day my next big project is to create my own personal server with really fast speeds.  My ISP has slow upload speeds, as do most isps.  One day, i want my own commercial grade server to put all my websites, shared files, file transferring, etc.  I want to have control over all of that eventually.  The only thing I don't want to control, nor can i, is the grid access.  I want a fast line for uploading/downloading/traffic and all the hardware, web space, servers, etc. is under my control.  I don't like committing to any cloud services.  I'd much rather set up an application myself on my own hardware, and simply use the isp to access it from anywhere.  This is my goal eventually.