Author Topic: Re: Tablet Computers  (Read 4467 times)

Offline Vic Vega

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Re: Tablet Computers
« on: June 07, 2011, 02:31:03 pm »
So does anybody on the HEF own a Tablet Computer?

Which brands should do you guys recommend, and what should be avoided?

I am sort of thinking about getting a Nook Color which is just an e-reader on steriods with web funtionality.

Mainly because I wouldn't mind having an Ipad, but I am not willing to pay for one.

So a device with half the functionality of an Ipad for around half the price sounds reasonble to me.

And even that's a strech since I can't say that I NEED a tablet(I can't even imagine needing a tablet).

Offline moor

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Re: Tablet Computers
« Reply #1 on: June 17, 2011, 12:37:30 am »
If you don't need a front facing camera, or video conferencing, than the Nook Color is a no brainer.  Invest in a 4gb sdhc hard and you can load Android 3.0 (which is downright amazing).

Hell, nobody NEEDS these things, but they sure are cool!

I'm personally waiting on this next crop of superphones over the summer - especially these "hybrid" phone/tablets from Asus and Motorola...alhough I'm sure the phone carriers will find a way to hold data hostage over the 4g networks...

Offline Vic Vega

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Re: Tablet Computers
« Reply #2 on: June 17, 2011, 08:58:47 pm »
If you don't need a front facing camera, or video conferencing, than the Nook Color is a no brainer.  Invest in a 4gb sdhc hard and you can load Android 3.0 (which is downright amazing).

Hell, nobody NEEDS these things, but they sure are cool!

I'm personally waiting on this next crop of superphones over the summer - especially these "hybrid" phone/tablets from Asus and Motorola...alhough I'm sure the phone carriers will find a way to hold data hostage over the 4g networks...


Thanks for answering!

Yeah, I was coming to the conclusion that the Nook Color offers the most bang for my buck myself. Its either that or the Dell Streak 7 which i could get for 50 bucks more.

But since the chances of me using something like Video Conferencing are slim at best, Im leaning towards the Nook Color.

There are enough decent productivity apps available even from B@N's somewhat crummy apps store that I can get all the functionalty I'll need without me trying to root the thing or load Honeycomb 3 on it.

If it does web, email and office stuff(thru apps) hey, it's a full tablet to me.

Offline Kristopher

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Re: Tablet Computers
« Reply #3 on: June 18, 2011, 11:43:56 am »
My household is  85% Google/Android.
My wife uses a Galaxy Tab Wifi.
I just got the Motorola Xoom wifi today.

Offline Battle

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Re: Tablet Computers
« Reply #4 on: June 18, 2011, 01:56:10 pm »
I just got the Motorola Xoom wifi today.




It's cool, huh? 8)

...but I want one in all-black casing.



This video answered the question I needed to know...

...The Motorola Xoom WiFi does have a Micro SD card slot because I have a ton o' videos downloaded from my Mobile Phone sitting on a few chips and it'd be a shame to not be able to view them in a wider resolution.

Offline Kristopher

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Re: Tablet Computers
« Reply #5 on: June 18, 2011, 07:47:56 pm »
I just got the Motorola Xoom wifi today.




It's cool, huh? 8)

...but I want one in all-black casing.



This video answered the question I needed to know...
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cp8ELu2Q5Zc
...The Motorola Xoom WiFi does have a Micro SD card slot because I have a ton o' videos downloaded from my Mobile Phone sitting on a few chips and it'd be a shame to not be able to view them in a wider resolution.


I've had it for about 12 hours and I'm lovin' this thing. After reading this customer's review on Amazon, I was sold:
"By Jordan G. Roselle (Laramie, WY USA) - See all my reviews

"When I first got the Xoom about a week ago I turned it on and I really wasn't blown away. I use lots of devices, and my first impression of the Xoom just wasn't stellar. However, I could see the potential, and so I kept using it, I got some apps, I started to learn the interface and the depth of the features.

Sometime during day 2 of using the Xoom it really hit me. The Xoom and the iPad are like chess and checkers. When you first start playing chess (or trying to use the Xoom, in my amazing analogy) you feel overwhelmed and confused. You can't really do things smoothly, you don't understand the options, it just is not a great first impression. On the other hand, your first game of checkers (or using the iPad) is probably going to be pretty smooth. It isn't complex, most all the options and concepts are obvious and easy to understand and your first game is going to be pretty similar to your hundredth.

However, as you start to understand the Xoom (or chess) it really starts to grow on you. You understand what you can do, how to do it, the amazing depth and possibility in the device. While the iPad (or checkers) players are still having roughly the same experience time after time, with the Xoom every day of experience with the device makes it more powerful and enjoyable to use. In the end, the Xoom becomes a much better device than any of the competition; it just takes some time for you to learn what it is capable of and how to make the most of it.

As you can tell from the last three paragraphs I wasn't exactly impressed with the Xoom to start. I wasn't even sure it would replace my current device for most things. However, by day two I started to really "get" the device.

This first happened when I needed to look over and annotate a PDF someone had sent me. I downloaded it from my email, and was able to actually put it in the Xoom memory where-ever I wanted in whatever folder I wanted. Wow, that is kind of cool, can't do that on the competition. Next, I was able to open it in a PDF reader, using this fancy program (which I easily found on the marketplace). I went through and did what I needed (with an amazing free hand drawing tool, it was a snap!), then I jumped back over to email, attached the newly edited PDF and sent it away. Now maybe I just never tried hard enough, but I don't think that is possible on some of the competition. That freedom to download files, do what you need, and then send them away again. On the iPad apps I have used it always requires the files to be in something like Dropbox, which is fine, except it would have made what I did impossible without using a computer.

Another "WOW" moment came when I wanted to get some ebooks onto the device. Now, on my Apple products this is generally a pain, you hook the device to the computer, go open itunes, you go to a certain tab, and a certain area, and a certain feature, and if you do it all right you can drag your ebooks over to the reader. It was rather simpler on the Xoom. For the ebooks I had on my computer I just dropped them in Dropbox, then I downloaded them on the Xoom, and using the Xoom file manager I easily moved them into a new "Books" folder I made in the Documents folder. Fast, quick, and simple and done on the device, rather than on the PC.

However, what really blew me away was when I wanted some ebooks off the web. Using the regular browser I was able to just download them directly from the internet onto the device. I then used the file manager again and simply moved them to the right folder. This really did impress me, my tablet was uncoupled from the PC, I could browse the full web, download things, and then make use of them all without ever needing to tether to my computer. I was hooked.

With my new excitement at not requiring my computer to use my tablet I headed over to an Android App development forum. Here developers had posted lots of cool apps that were in beta or that they wanted to promote. On competing devices the only way to get an app is through the sanctioned and controlled portal, not so on Android (and thus Xoom). Using the Xoom browser I bounced around the forum, I downloaded beta apps, and then I was able to easily install them. Again, this is all on the device, and these were not approved apps, awesome.

Another example of something that impressed me came on my third day with the device. I was using the CNN app (which is free and tablet optimized, go check it out) and I watched a video of a story that I thought was really interesting, but it was one of those that is only a teaser, and the rest is on another site. When I hit these videos on my iPad I just have to try to remember to watch them later on a computer, because they are inevitably flash based. Not so on the Xoom, I typed in the address, the flash loaded up perfectly, and I was watching the video in full screen with no trouble.

This process of growing more comfortable with the device and learning what it could do continued over the last few days. At every turn I would find something amazing that just wasn't possible on competing tablets. I discovered the glory of widgets (custom little desktop things to show you the weather, or news, or whatever). I found some live wallpaper (moving animated wallpaper, that can change and adapt to things, such as the weather). I just kept finding new awesome features and uses.

One thing I want to touch on that is perhaps more technical than the rest of my review is the screen. I use my tablets to read, I started using ebooks a while back and I found tablets to work pretty well for that. I do most of my reading at night before bed, so the backlit screen is actually helpful versus a traditional reader. Anyway, one of the things that has always bothered me about the iPad as an ereader is that the pixel density (that is the number of pixels (or square blocks of color) in each inch of screen space) is very low. The iPad has somewhere around 130PPI (pixels per inch). It was so low that it really did give me noticeable eye strain to read on the device, I could see the pixels, and it really just wasn't a great reading experience. This was so pronounced that for the last few months I had actually been doing most of my reading on a 4th generation iPod Touch. It had a smaller screen, but a higher pixel density.

Anyway, the Xoom has a very noticeable increase in resolution and pixel density. With its higher resolution it has roughly 33% more pixels than the iPad, roughly 300,000 additional pixels. This is something you can see immediately when looking at any text. It is a lot smoother and easier to read on the Xoom. However, the other side of this is that the iPad has a different display type, that does have better viewing angles and color/contrast. In my case I don't really care, I find the pixel density to be 1000 times more important than small color improvements or viewing angles but I feel I should mention it.

My point in these last two paragraphs is that the Xoom is a much better device for displaying text than any of the lower resolution competition. If you are looking for a tablet to read your newspaper and books and websites on, then you definitely should give the Xoom or other higher resolution tablets a look. In my opinion the resolution on the iPad/iPad 2 just does not cut it for text.

Welp, this is really starting to get long, so I guess I should wrap it up. I know this isn't like the usual review you read, but I really wanted to give people an idea of the experience of using the Xoom versus just giving the facts and the breakdown and the comparisons. The Xoom is a device that improves exponentially the more you use it. After a few days of use I really can't imagine returning to the constraints and frustrations of the competition. However, on my first day I wasn't that impressed, so be sure to stick with it and get used to it. Now I am off to make dinner, and to accompany me I am going to take my Xoom, which is streaming live video thanks to the wonderful inclusion of flash, the competition is going to stay sitting on the shelf (probably for the foreseeable future).

I just want to mention that I am giving the Xoom four stars because it is not perfect. As a reference after using the Xoom I would probably give the iPad / iPad 2 three stars. There are still improvements that can be made to tablets. I really feel like Android and Xoom are on the right track, but this is still not what I would call a perfect tablet, it is just the best that is available right now (for my uses)."

Offline Vic Vega

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Re: Tablet Computers
« Reply #6 on: June 20, 2011, 06:22:16 am »
I looked into the Galaxy Tab. The Xoom is too rich for my blood.

 

Offline Funkenstein

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Re: Tablet Computers
« Reply #7 on: June 21, 2011, 04:46:14 pm »
I've had the Nook Color for about 4 months and it's cool.

Too cool it turns out; my wife hijacked it. 

As you've said, it's perfect for light weight stuff like the reader and web surfing.  B&N claims the apps catalog will continue to ramp up.  I can testify that it has more than tripled since I first got on.

I was going to root it, but haven't had the need yet.
Free your mind, and your ass will follow.

Offline Vic Vega

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Re: Tablet Computers
« Reply #8 on: September 03, 2011, 06:13:17 pm »
So i ended up buying a coby kyros 7024.  Yea I never heard of it either til 3 weeks ago.

It's about 50 bucks cheaper than a Nook Color, it has a camera and most importantly, I wont have root the damn thing or buy a boot sd to get full funtionality out of it.

I can put both the Kindle and Nook apps on this thing.

Of course if the thing ups and dies on me a year and a day from now the joke will be on me.

Offline BlackRodimus

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Re: Tablet Computers
« Reply #9 on: September 03, 2011, 08:55:44 pm »
Cool thread. I've been interested in buying a tablet, I just didn't know which one, there are SOOO many to chose from. Since I like Android apps I know I'd prefer that over an iPad, though.
"don't fight the power, be the power" - Reginald Hudlin

Offline Catch22

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Re: Tablet Computers
« Reply #10 on: September 04, 2011, 07:40:06 am »
I have the iPad 2 and I love it!  I usually leave it at home during the day, so my wife and kids can facetime with me on my lunch break at work.  I don't use it for any major computing, but the entertainment, household and children's educational apps gives it an A+ in my book.  In addition, with the use of Dropbox, I can access documents and other files on the iPad that are on my home or work computers, so I can use it for some business purposes if I want.  Before I bought the iPad, I purchased a Coby 7015 Android pad.  It was only $99, so I said, "what the heck"!  It was pretty good, but had a couple of different problems and bugs that may or may not have been fixed in subsequent updates.  It now sits inside my desk drawer at home.  I may take it out and try to update it sometime.  All in all, it's really changed the way I use computers at home, besides the fact that I can use the Kindle and Nook apps on the iPad, too.

Offline Vic Vega

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Re: Tablet Computers
« Reply #11 on: September 04, 2011, 03:22:33 pm »
I have the iPad 2 and I love it!  I usually leave it at home during the day, so my wife and kids can facetime with me on my lunch break at work.  I don't use it for any major computing, but the entertainment, household and children's educational apps gives it an A+ in my book.  In addition, with the use of Dropbox, I can access documents and other files on the iPad that are on my home or work computers, so I can use it for some business purposes if I want.  Before I bought the iPad, I purchased a Coby 7015 Android pad.  It was only $99, so I said, "what the heck"!  It was pretty good, but had a couple of different problems and bugs that may or may not have been fixed in subsequent updates.  It now sits inside my desk drawer at home.  I may take it out and try to update it sometime.  All in all, it's really changed the way I use computers at home, besides the fact that I can use the Kindle and Nook apps on the iPad, too.

Uh oh.

What problems did you have with your Coby?

Well, all the later versions of the Coby tablet are at least Android 2.2 and they all allow you to get all the apps from Appslib and not just the free ones.

I put Amazon market on mine within 15 minutes of getting it out of the box so it would not have been an issue for me either way. Now im trying to put Flash 10.3 on it.

You have both the Kindle and the Nook apps on your iPad?

Did you have to jailbreak it?




Offline Catch22

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Re: Tablet Computers
« Reply #12 on: September 05, 2011, 04:23:35 pm »
My iPad is jailbroken, but the Kindle and Nook apps are free and available on the App Store.  When I got my Coby, it came with Android 2.1 and didn't include the Android Marketplace and Coby doesn't build these things to be updated to the latest OS.  I had to root the thing, just to get Marketplace on it.  It's kinda slow and even though it has native USB support, the connection is kinda iffy.  Since I discovered this thread, I took the Coby out of the drawer and found a way to get Gingerbread 2.3.3 installed on it.  Now I can use Netflix and all the other good stuff I was missing with Android 2.1 installed.  I'll give it another chance, if only to have a tablet to use while my girls are on the iPad.

Offline moor

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Re: Tablet Computers
« Reply #13 on: September 14, 2011, 10:50:55 am »
Interestingly enough...  Windows has been showcasing Windows 8 to developers this week, and it looks like they will be unifying the OS across the PC - tablet landscape (not sure how this will back up to Windows Phone 7 yet).

You can download the developers build at mdsn.com if you want to play around with it (don't forget to partition your hard drive/back up files first!)

This looks very interesting.. supposedly it scales all the way down to working on an Atom processor with 2gb of ram, it's compatible with x86 and ARM processors, will have XBox live and Kinect functions built in,  and of course will operate using the touch-based metro GUI and the traditional mouse/keyboard graphic user interface.

Now, before I get my hopes up of landing that sub-$500 tablet that will replace my desktop/mp3 player and control my XBox, I will need to hear MS's game plan for launching this OS without cannibalizing their other product lines...  they have NOT announced if they plan on releasing tailored versions of this like they have done since Windows 98/ME or if it will be just one version with the possibility of a server edition .

Nonethe less, this would eliminate the clutter of having 3 different OSes running throughout the house and trying to play nicely with all simultaneously...   I like Android, but I loved WebOS (RIP Pre!) and I hate the fact that most of Googles Apps just feel like crippled bits of MS programs.   Integrating all of your devices under one umbrella would be awesome..  aaaaand the fact that you are using the SAME OS across each platform is pretty cool... Apple has to give some serious consideration to MS now as a competitor... unfortunately they've got a whole year before this goes gold... est. arrival time is Fall 2012 :(


Offline Vic Vega

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Re: Tablet Computers
« Reply #14 on: October 07, 2011, 08:26:28 am »
It took me about 8 to 10 tries but I FINALLY got Android Market on my Kyros.

Since I'm not a techy type at all, I'm  kinda proud of myself.

The Amazon Fire looks really interesting to me. Something that simply allows you to consume content is pretty much all most users want thier tablets for.

Not an iPad killer probably, but it does seen aimed at blowing the Nook Color out of the water.

I would have thought Windows 8 would have come out already.

By the time they release it, it won't be able to get a toehold in the Tablet market.

If I wanted to pay 500+ for a tablet it would NOT be a Windows device.