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megimoo
04-01-2011, 08:20 PM
Whether you opt for an Apple iPad, a BlackBerry PlayBook, or an Android device, like the Motorola Xoom, purchasing a quality tablet can be a daunting task. Here's what you need to know before you hit the store.
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First Off: Do You Even Need a Tablet?
Simply put, tablets aren't really filling any true need right now—they are neither replacements for full-fledged computers nor smartphones.

A tablet is a touch-screen media device that is actually most similar to a very advanced portable media player—or an MP3 player with a much larger screen. Yes, many of them have mobile service features, but currently none of them make phone calls via a traditional mobile provider.

And while you can get work done on a tablet, you won't get a desktop-grade operating system, like you'll find on a PC. Tablets are basically lightweight versions of laptops in every sense—they weigh less, and they're lighter on features.

The advantage they offer over laptops is an easy way to check e-mail, browse the Web, consume media, and play games—just like a smartphone. But with a tablet you get a much bigger screen with more real estate. The bottom line is, you probably don't need one, but if you want a tablet, read on.

http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2382821,00.asp

Gingersnap
04-01-2011, 08:39 PM
The advantage they offer over laptops is an easy way to check e-mail, browse the Web, consume media, and play games—just like a smartphone. But with a tablet you get a much bigger screen with more real estate. The bottom line is, you probably don't need one, but if you want a tablet, read on.


That's exactly why I want one! :)

malloc
04-01-2011, 08:49 PM
I plan on getting a tablet for a lot of reasons.

I use Nook & Kindle, but I use the apps and don't have the readers, so a tablet that can run the nook & kindle apps with a big screen and still perform other functions is a good choice over just a buying a nook or a kindle. They are handier in the kitchen than a laptop when trying to follow recipes while cooking, or in the garage while reloading, looking up automotive specs, etc.

Here's an idea I had that might help others who want a tablet. Tablets are generally more expensive than smart phones, not due to screen size difference, but because smart phones are usually subsidized by the carrier you bought them from. The difference in the cost of a 3.5 touch screen versus a 7 or 8 inch touch screen really isn't that great. However, when you buy a phone from T-Mobile or something, T-Mobile could be paying more than half the cost of the phone, which is why you sign a contract. For instance, I paid $100 for my G-2 with a $100 mail in manufacturer's rebate. The cost of the phone is $500, so T-Mobile paid subsidized $300 of my phone in order to get me on a service contract where they will make that money back and then some.

To get a tablet cheaply, find a company that subsidizes the hardware! For instance, a Nook Color can be bought from Barnes & Noble for $250, with Barnes & Noble subsidizing some of the cost with the expectation that you will buy NookBooks. You can then take that Nook Color and flash it with Android 2.4, and you have a fully functional tablet, running Android with full access to the App Store and all the other Android features, for $250. At the app store, you can get the Nook & Kindle apps, and install them, and still be able to use the hardware to read Nook or Kindle books.

Gingersnap
04-01-2011, 09:10 PM
A lot of people are stumbling on to that. I've decided to buy a tablet this fall and the main reason was that I found out how to make it a phone with Bluetooth. That was my last stumbling block.

I don't want to carry a phone and tablet and the phones were too small to do what I wanted them to do.

malloc
04-01-2011, 09:19 PM
A lot of people are stumbling on to that. I've decided to buy a tablet this fall and the main reason was that I found out how to make it a phone with Bluetooth. That was my last stumbling block.

I don't want to carry a phone and tablet and the phones were too small to do what I wanted them to do.

I don't plan on carrying my phone my phone and a tablet. My tablet will stay at home, for use around the house. Won't you be using skype or something similar with the tablet? I know most tablets, like the Galaxy Tab have 4G data and WiFi, but no cellular hardware so it can't make cell calls. However, you can hook up a bluetooth headset, and install Skype and make VoIP calls.

I would like to find a tablet hardware platform that was cheap and had an infrared (IrDA) port. I could do some pretty neat smarthome stuff with that. It would be great if my tablet was also my remote control, security system, lighting and heating/air control as well.

Gingersnap
04-01-2011, 09:32 PM
I don't plan on carrying my phone my phone and a tablet. My tablet will stay at home, for use around the house. Won't you be using skype or something similar with the tablet? I know most tablets, like the Galaxy Tab have 4G data and WiFi, but no cellular hardware so it can't make cell calls. However, you can hook up a bluetooth headset, and install Skype and make VoIP calls.

I would like to find a tablet hardware platform that was cheap and had an infrared (IrDA) port. I could do some pretty neat smarthome stuff with that. It would be great if my tablet was also my remote control, security system, lighting and heating/air control as well.

Nope, you can force it to access the cell network. I have almost no need to use voice outside of emergencies but then I need it. I just want one device for phone, pix, reading, and surfing. If I want to analysis my taxes or tweak a database, I can use my desktop.

I like my notebook and netbook but obviously there are limitations there.

fettpett
04-01-2011, 09:39 PM
Nope, you can force it to access the cell network. I have almost no need to use voice outside of emergencies but then I need it. I just want one device for phone, pix, reading, and surfing. If I want to analysis my taxes or tweak a database, I can use my desktop.

I like my notebook and netbook but obviously there are limitations there.

skype is a lot easier than forcing it to access those networks, and you can call pretty much any phone with a skype account, free one at that.

megimoo
04-01-2011, 10:29 PM
I don't plan on carrying my phone my phone and a tablet. My tablet will stay at home, for use around the house. Won't you be using skype or something similar with the tablet? I know most tablets, like the Galaxy Tab have 4G data and WiFi, but no cellular hardware so it can't make cell calls. However, you can hook up a bluetooth headset, and install Skype and make VoIP calls.

I would like to find a tablet hardware platform that was cheap and had an infrared (IrDA) port. I could do some pretty neat smarthome stuff with that. It would be great if my tablet was also my remote control, security system, lighting and heating/air control as well.
As It says In the fine print...There's an application for that !