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When Should I Buy an Android Tablet?

Soulskill posted more than 3 years ago | from the definitely-prior-to-the-apocalypse dept.

Handhelds 396

jpyeck writes "I've deliberately avoided the smartphone craze, due to the fact I've never utilized any phone (landline or otherwise) enough to justify the monthly fees. But the geek in me craves the 'smart' part of the equation, especially since I got a bonus this year-end that is burning a hole in my pocket. The iPad is out of the question because I need a bit more hack-ability in my gadgets. I am drooling over the Android Honeycomb demo from the CES. I've had my eye on the Galaxy Tab, though it sounds like it won't support Honeycomb. The Xoom looks great, but who knows when it will come out? The consensus seems to be 'wait a few months for Honeycomb.' If you were me, with limited patience, would you buy an Android tablet now? If so, which?"

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396 comments

If you were me... (1)

coolate (1173457) | more than 3 years ago | (#34807138)

You would have already got one!

Re:If you were me... (2)

Jake73 (306340) | more than 3 years ago | (#34807540)

Yes. The geek is weak in this one. If you waited this long for a smart phone, surely you can wait another decade for the best features of tablets to come out.

I get used stuff, but several of them (1)

h00manist (800926) | more than 3 years ago | (#34808070)

I too am way behind on these little hand computers. Just got an iphone and a blackberry, next I'm getting some android thing. Don't care which the OS won't bee too different from one to the other. I'm starting to get one cheap used gadget of every mobile OS to mess with them all, along with a couple of prepaid chips.

Wait till end of Q1 2011 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34807150)

Many tablets coming in. I'm going for the Asus eeepc 121. Theoratically should be able to get a full blown linux distro on it.

Re:Wait till end of Q1 2011 (1)

teh31337one (1590023) | more than 3 years ago | (#34807298)

Motorola Xoom, and LG G-slate are both slated (no pun intended) for a Q1-ish release.

And they are better than the other tablets that have slower processors, are running a hackjob of android, Galaxy Tab included.

Re:Wait till end of Q1 2011 (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34807728)

I've been to CES before, unless it says "January" as the release date, you'll be lucky to get it within 3 months of their official "release timeframe"... Naming specific quarters usually means right at the very end of that quarter as well.

Here's what I'd do (3, Insightful)

sensei moreh (868829) | more than 3 years ago | (#34807152)

If I were you, I'd put the year-end bonus in a 6-mo CD, and get the tablet when the CD's term is up

Re:Here's what I'd do (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34807204)

If I were you, I'd put the year-end bonus in a 6-mo CD, and get the tablet when the CD's term is up

6 Month CD is what, 1%?

100 dollars is 1 dollar
1000 dollars is 10 dollars
10,000 dollars is 100 dollars

I seriously doubt that his year-end-bouns was $10,000 epic.

Re:Here's what I'd do (4, Informative)

vux984 (928602) | more than 3 years ago | (#34807388)

If I were you, I'd put the year-end bonus in a 6-mo CD, and get the tablet when the CD's term is up

Waiting 6 months might well be sensible. But the average CD yield is 0.63% (APR). So... $1000 in a 6 month CD will net him under $3.50.

Re:Here's what I'd do (4, Interesting)

cmeans (81143) | more than 3 years ago | (#34807768)

Better yet, use the $1000 to make 40 loans to people all around the world at www.kiva.org. Make sure the loans are short term, so they'll be done within the 6 month time frame. You won't make any money...and there is the risk of loosing some of what you've loaned, but the Karma (and good feelings) of helping 40+ people around the world should far out weigh the $3.50 or more you might make in interest. -Chris

Re:Here's what I'd do (1)

AliasMarlowe (1042386) | more than 3 years ago | (#34808164)

Better yet, use the $1000 to make 40 loans to people all around the world at www.kiva.org. Make sure the loans are short term, so they'll be done within the 6 month time frame. You won't make any money...and there is the risk of loosing some of what you've loaned, but the Karma (and good feelings) of helping 40+ people around the world should far out weigh the $3.50 or more you might make in interest.

Slashdot says I've got loads of Karma, and he's welcome to the lot in return for the thousand bucks.

Re:Here's what I'd do (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34808292)

Better yet, use the $1000 to make 40 loans to people all around the world at www.kiva.org. Make sure the loans are short term, so they'll be done within the 6 month time frame. You won't make any money...and there is the risk of loosing some of what you've loaned, but the Karma (and good feelings) of helping 40+ people around the world should far out weigh the $3.50 or more you might make in interest.

-Chris

as Mr Burns says... "I'd be happier ..."

Re:Here's what I'd do (2)

a803redman (870583) | more than 3 years ago | (#34807928)

or spend $300 on a ticket to Vegas $500 on one bet (black 13 is the way to go) if you will its like 18k if no you have 200 to drink the pain away at a girly club.

Re:Here's what I'd do (1)

tmach (886393) | more than 3 years ago | (#34807632)

Good thought, but a 6-month CD won't earn you much (they're only paying about, what, .6%?) so put the money in an online savings account instead. You can get more than twice that from, say Capital One or Amex.

Hey, every little bit helps, right?

Re:Here's what I'd do (1)

camperslo (704715) | more than 3 years ago | (#34807968)

If I were you, I'd put the year-end bonus in a 6-mo CD, and get the tablet when the CD's term is up

In spite of the irony, he just might do better with Apple stock.

Re:Here's what I'd do (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34808232)

And he might do significantly worse, depending on numerous random factors.

Nook Color (1)

moogied (1175879) | more than 3 years ago | (#34807174)

Guy at work had a Nook Color with android put on it, was eff'n sweet. No 3g, but it has wifi and he just connected it to his phone. I was suprised at how well it responded, i'm sure the Galaxy Tab is snappier, but this thing moved quite well. So all in all, I'd say maybe get a Nook Color to see what you like? Its 250$ and it is pretty nice. Would be real handy at home or on lunch from work or whatever where you just want to surf the net and play angry birds.

Re:Nook Color (2)

man_of_mr_e (217855) | more than 3 years ago | (#34807202)

The nook color is also pretty hackable. Apprantely, the device comes with a bluetooth adapter that is disabled by default, and hacks have been able to re-enable it.

Re:Nook Color (1)

moogied (1175879) | more than 3 years ago | (#34807234)

Oh? Well, then the wifi part of the smart phone could be automated and replaced. Just have it BT to the smartphone and stream the net over that maybe. Would be a slick setup to have.

Re:Nook Color (1)

RightSaidFred99 (874576) | more than 3 years ago | (#34807256)

Seconded. The Nook Color is the best price/performance tablet you can buy right now. It's easy to root it so you can run Market apps on it.

Re:Nook Color (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34808104)

I love my rooted Nook Color....great battery life, wonderful screen, fun to hack the sh*t out of it..... +1 for a Nook Color.

Simple answers (1, Insightful)

iluvcapra (782887) | more than 3 years ago | (#34807190)

When should I buy an Android tablet?

When the value of the tablet finally exceeds the trouble you go to claiming "how much better" your netbook is to your friends, and finally to yourself. Then you can make keeping the tablet customized and updated and flashed and jailbroken your new personal hobby for a few years.

Re:Simple answers (1)

jedidiah (1196) | more than 3 years ago | (#34807584)

I don't spend that much time keeping my iThings jailbroken.

Why should anyone expect Android to be any different?

I will buy an Android tablet when it can replace the aforementioned and indirectly maligned netbook.

I have a novel idea. How about you evaluate it when you can in person and then decide based on that.

Re:Simple answers (1)

cynyr (703126) | more than 3 years ago | (#34808006)

Only needed to jailbreak my mytouch 4g once, now it runs cyanogen, and I expect I'll never need to press the button that did the jailbreak again...

18 years ago (-1, Troll)

wiredlogic (135348) | more than 3 years ago | (#34807198)

How about 18 years ago when it was called a Newton. Seriously. WTF? Do you need Slashdot to tell you when to wipe your ass too?

Re:18 years ago (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34807426)

Why are you so pissed ? He's asking a tech question, on a tech related website and he's about right wondering which Android tablet to get, there's so many flavors of the damn, thing, so many considerations (will it run honeycomb being one of them), price versus features, etc. It's not that easy to pick one.

Wait for Honeycomb (5, Insightful)

p0p0 (1841106) | more than 3 years ago | (#34807224)

Wait for tablets that tout Android 3.0 Honeycomb as that version is geared towards proper tablet support. The tablets out now are hack jobs to be able to run the older versions of Android, such as faking accelerometers and other hardware Android specifies.

Never (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34807230)

I won't get an Android tablet, I would get an iPad if I needed a tablet. I don't need a tablet so I am sticking with the iPhone.

The iPad is out of the question (2, Informative)

nurb432 (527695) | more than 3 years ago | (#34807240)

Because its too much $. At least for me. While i would rather have one, I can get a decent Android tablet for under 200. If the ipad was down to 300 id have chosen that instead.

Its not a 'reqiurement' to have one so the budget comes into play for some of us.

Re:The iPad is out of the question (1)

Renderer of Evil (604742) | more than 3 years ago | (#34807480)

At $200 you're going to get junk. The components of a good tablet cost far more than $200 and companies have to have some kind of a margin to stay in business.

Suppose the $200 is a retail price, which means that distribution, engineering, and component costs have to be somewhere in the sub $200 range. I can't think how this is possible without magic. The capacitive 10" screen alone is generously pegged at $95 per unit by iSuppli and even then it doesn't have crazy PPI density found in iPhone4 or AMOLED screens.

I say, keep dreaming or buy disposable plastic.

Re:The iPad is out of the question (1)

nurb432 (527695) | more than 3 years ago | (#34807620)

While i do agree capacitive screens are much nicer, it doesn't mean old-tech resistive screens are junk. Just picked up a sub 200 dollar 7" device last week, a 15 dollar 8gb SD, and it seems to be just fine.

But i do agree, there is a lot of garbage out there so you do have to do your homework first.

Re:The iPad is out of the question (1)

beelsebob (529313) | more than 3 years ago | (#34808026)

While i do agree capacitive screens are much nicer, it doesn't mean old-tech resistive screens are junk.

Hah, it doesn't *mean* it, but it is still a fact, resistive touch screens are a nightmare to use, especially when you try to type nice and fast on them.

Re:The iPad is out of the question (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34807844)

You can get a Nook Color for $250. It's plastic, but the components are great and it's trivial to root.

Re:The iPad is out of the question (1)

jjb3rd (1138577) | more than 3 years ago | (#34807658)

Because its too much $. At least for me. While i would rather have one, I can get a decent Android tablet for under 200. If the ipad was down to 300 id have chosen that instead.

Its not a 'reqiurement' to have one so the budget comes into play for some of us.

You get what you pay for and time is worth money. Waiting another month or two to save another $200 will save you loads of time in the long run and you'll be happier with your gadget. I, for one, am nearly living in the tech utopia I saw in Aliens as a child...Facetime, Bitches, Facetime. (I allow and encourage Apple to use that for an ad).

iPads will get less expensive ... (1)

perpenso (1613749) | more than 3 years ago | (#34808008)

Because its too much $. At least for me. While i would rather have one, I can get a decent Android tablet for under 200. If the ipad was down to 300 id have chosen that instead.

The iPad is still on its initial release, its still primarily being sold to the early adopters. IIRC the iPod started out at $500, the iPhone started out at $600, ... eventually they got to $250 or $200. Apple likes to have multiple configurations for these devices, a good, better and best sort of thing, each at very different price points. One year's "best" model is the next year's "good" model at nearly half the price. If you can wait for a product line update or two you may very well see that sub-$300 iPad.

When they finally ship one worth using (5, Insightful)

gstrickler (920733) | more than 3 years ago | (#34807248)

In case you haven't noticed, companies have been trying to make a tablet computer for 10+ years. The iPad finally showed people it could be done and now everyone is scrambling to come out with something competitive. Wait at least 6 months to see what comes out, because right now, there is very little selection and the chances of anyone getting it right on their first attempt is pretty small.

Re:When they finally ship one worth using (3, Insightful)

KonoWatakushi (910213) | more than 3 years ago | (#34807606)

The iPad may be a good start, but it is still very crude, and doesn't even scratch the surface of what a tablet could be. A tablet should at the very least also support stylus input, and allow people to explore/develop alternative input systems. (Of which there are already a number that are far superior to fixed on-screen qwerty keyboards, or even miniature physical keyboards.)

No one is going to get it right the first time, and selling locked-down featureless hardware, which is guaranteed to be forever crippled isn't a winning strategy. (This applies not only to Apple, but tivoized Android systems as well.)

Re:When they finally ship one worth using (4, Insightful)

93 Escort Wagon (326346) | more than 3 years ago | (#34807932)

The iPad may be a good start, but it is still very crude, and doesn't even scratch the surface of what a tablet could be. A tablet should at the very least also support stylus input, and allow people to explore/develop alternative input systems. (Of which there are already a number that are far superior to fixed on-screen qwerty keyboards, or even miniature physical keyboards.)

No one is going to get it right the first time, and selling locked-down featureless hardware, which is guaranteed to be forever crippled isn't a winning strategy. (This applies not only to Apple, but tivoized Android systems as well.)

Stylus input "tablets" have been around for over a decade - and they've mostly died off. The same can mostly be said for tablets with a so-called "full blown" OS (e.g. Windows tablets). The market has spoken, and it's pretty much disproven everything you said. Whether you choose to recognize that fact is an entirely different matter.

Re:When they finally ship one worth using (2)

KonoWatakushi (910213) | more than 3 years ago | (#34808200)

The market doesn't speak, but if it could, it wouldn't be saying what you think. All that can be inferred is that people didn't buy something, not why, and consideration for a tablet goes far beyond wether it has a stylus or not.

Even if the perfect device was available a decade ago, which it wasn't, it would be meaningless without the software to take advantage of those features. That isn't going to happen if the hardware doesn't exist though, so there has been little opportunity for innovation.

The only device that I know of which even has potential for an interested developer, would be the Lenovo X series tablets, but I don't know if the relevant documentation is even available. (Of course that isn't nearly in the size and price range that most people would consider for a tablet.)

Re:When they finally ship one worth using (4, Interesting)

Antisyzygy (1495469) | more than 3 years ago | (#34808202)

If I could write equations on a tablet and it would transcribe it into LaTeX I would buy a tablet right now.

nookcolor, rooted (4, Interesting)

fimbulvetr (598306) | more than 3 years ago | (#34807254)

Posting from my rooted nook color.

Seriously, with the native book app installed, plus the kindle app and angry birds. This is some of the best$ 250 I've ever spent.
Ps:
You pay tax b&n books, but not on amazons.

Why not iPad? (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34807282)

If you are looking for "hackability", why not choose an iPad (or iPad 2)? If you want to hack the tablet, you can easily jailbreak the iPad and then hack it as much as you want. iPhones have been shown to run Android, I'm sure and iPad will eventually be able to run Honeycomb as well.

Notion Ink Adam (3, Interesting)

patjhal (1423249) | more than 3 years ago | (#34807302)

Seems like the best I have seen and they made it a point to improve the interface with their own homegrown, yet still allow you to install ubuntu if you like. Tegra2, pixelQI, hdmi out, good battery, weight, and size. I have seen nothing else beat it. Of course it is still only in preorder.

Re:Notion Ink Adam (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34807546)

I agree! I am in the same situation as the poster i.e. no need for a cell phone, but wanting the best 'open source' (linux distro installable) tablet with the best specs and a reasonable price. So far, the Notion Ink Adam has the most promise in this regard (right?). On the Android side, I insist on the fully-compliant specs that would enable the use of 'augmented reality' apps like astronomy -- and this tends to eliminate many of the less expensive tablets.

Re:Notion Ink Adam (1)

lixee (863589) | more than 3 years ago | (#34807710)

Adam is a good choice, yes! But I don't think Ubuntu would run well on that exotic Tegra 2 hardware.

Do as Google says.. (2)

Keruo (771880) | more than 3 years ago | (#34807324)

If you really must have Android tablet, do as Google says and wait for the release of android 3.0.
Google says 2.x is not suited/intended to run on tablets, so your experience is likely sub-par.

Re:Do as Google says.. (1)

nurb432 (527695) | more than 3 years ago | (#34807396)

Or get a nice tablet now, and upgrade to 3.0 when it happens.

Re:Do as Google says.. (1)

Keruo (771880) | more than 3 years ago | (#34807478)

And exactly what guarantees that the tablet you get now is upgradable in the future?
Besides faster processors get cheaper over time, so your just bought tablet will be underpowered when/if the new version arrives to it.

Re:Do as Google says.. (1)

ChunderDownunder (709234) | more than 3 years ago | (#34807994)

It's a computer running Linux, thus ought to be upgradeable for the life of the device.

On the other hand, if it doesn't have an open boot-loader and open drivers - no sale.

Re:Do as Google says.. (2)

TheEyes (1686556) | more than 3 years ago | (#34808108)

That's always true, though. If the reason you are waiting is because things will be cheaper in X months, you'll always be waiting. The right way to do things is to match your needs to the hardware capabilities, and pull the trigger when those capabilities fall into your budget range.

Re:Do as Google says.. (2)

whoop (194) | more than 3 years ago | (#34808130)

What's even better is waiting for 20.2. It is going to be WAY cool than the crap that's out now. I can tell you this because I know someone at Google who may or may not be working on it. While all of you are wasting time with your phones, tablets, netbooks, cerebral implants, I am going to sit here on my futon knowing I'm going to be having a vastly superior experience than all of you combined. Trust me, good things come to those who wait. All you people are suckers.

Galaxy S PDA (2)

adanedhel728 (1931560) | more than 3 years ago | (#34807326)

If I remember correctly, there was a story about a non-phone Galaxy S PDA coming out. I would personally prefer a PDA to a tab. Smaller means smaller screen, but much easier to carry around. I see people carrying around iPads and I think, you do know that there's an iPod touch that's the same thing but easier to carry, right? Lol. And if you're willing, you could get a Nexus S unlocked, because if you don't put a SIM card in it it should work just as a mobile Android platform that uses Wifi. That's not a small chunk of change, though.

I know that doesn't really answer the question, though, lol. But if I wanted to get an Android tab, I'd be more likely to just get a netbook and put Ubuntu on it. Half the cost, twice the function. And, yes, I know that's flamebait, but I never understood the appeal of tabs.

But... to actually *answer* the question, given those options, my opinion would be to go ahead and get a Galaxy S tab now. There'll always be something new on the horizon. When Honeycomb comes out, you'll just be drooling over the next version, "Dancing Banana." (And, yes, I did just make that up.)

Re:Galaxy S PDA (1)

Yvan256 (722131) | more than 3 years ago | (#34807650)

Some people do want/need the bigger screen, the older you get and the more useless small screens become, even those with a very high resolution.

Re:Galaxy S PDA (1)

blackest_k (761565) | more than 3 years ago | (#34808212)

tablets are nice for media players basic web browsing and hacking the hell out of it :)

The battery life is pretty good 7 hours of video or 42 hours of music on mine. I can hook it up to an amp and stream from my nas using wifi. I can use it for documentation without switching between displays.

It's not as useful as my netbook really but handy to read a book before I drop off to sleep. Netbook is pretty lousy for that.

a seven inch screen is big enough there is usb host but most retailers won't stock the cable.

I think for a first tablet you shouldn't pay too much and find one which is easy to hack with a community round it.

i've played round with the iPod touch it feels great but the screens too small for me and I don't really want to take a sledge hammer to the walled garden.

The galaxy tab is too much money even thou its very nice.

cheap hacking fun , love it :)

Why a tablet (1)

stewski (1455665) | more than 3 years ago | (#34807360)

If I was you I'd consider the value of a Pay as you go, low cost Android phone over the tablet form factor.

Best in the UK is the orange San Francisco at £100, easily unlocked and if moved to Tmobile it's £20 per 6 months 3G internet.

Nexus S (1)

stoolpigeon (454276) | more than 3 years ago | (#34807368)

I'd buy an unlocked Nexus S and not get a contract for it. Not as big as a tablet but it would be an awesome platform for playing around with Android and at some point if you wanted the phone portion too that would be trivial to activate.

I know that's outside the parameters of your question but I thought I'd throw it out there.

i'd wait a while (1)

metalmaster (1005171) | more than 3 years ago | (#34807438)

Companies are going to rush to get their tablets out with Honeycomb, and the hardware might vary as they compete with one another.

Look at the market right now. You've got tablets as cheap as $100 with shitty hardware. There's the middle ground with hardware that works and at the high-end you have the ipad and galaxy tab. I'd wait until even the commodity hardware is enough to make a decent tablet

Buy one that follows standards. (1, Insightful)

Kludge (13653) | more than 3 years ago | (#34807484)

Don't buy it unless it has a standard connector like USB.

Re:Buy one that follows standards. (3, Insightful)

Graham J - XVI (1076671) | more than 3 years ago | (#34807616)

That's not very good advice considering the best tablet on the market doesn't have a USB connector, at least not right on the device. The utility of a device is not governed by its connectors.

So don't call it a phone... (1)

Jake73 (306340) | more than 3 years ago | (#34807486)

You've waited this long to buy a smart phone because you don't use your phone?

Just because it's called a "phone" doesn't mean that's the primary function. I make very little use of my "phone" to actually talk to people. You've missed out on years of great utility because of this ridiculous notion.

Re:So don't call it a phone... (1)

Yvan256 (722131) | more than 3 years ago | (#34807678)

Why pay 70$+ per month when you don't use it enough to justify the cost?

Re:So don't call it a phone... (2)

whoop (194) | more than 3 years ago | (#34808288)

You don't know how much you'll use it until you start using it. Then you find neat little things to do here and there. I could care less about music, so I never bothered getting ipods, itunes, etc. I barely used the phone, so I just had a simple cell phone to call the wife for the grocery list on the way home from work. I told myself I can just wait until I get home to check email, web sites, etc.

Then, I got the HTC Hero (Sprint) in October 2009 to play with making Android apps and make billions of dollars in a weekend once I thought of a cool idea. Then I started checking email, RSS news, web sites, etc a couple times an hour. I listen to a couple dozen podcasts throughout the day. I put down my DS (actually my daughter took it over), and play similar simple little games on this. Here we are over a year later, and the battery was giving me grief. I started to get the shakes (almost) from not being able to use my phone until my replacement battery arrived yesterday.

You don't know just how much you will use it until you start using it. There will always be another phone/tablet better than yours, but just get one and start having some fun.

A fool and his money (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34807490)

But the geek in me craves the 'smart' part of the equation, especially since I got a bonus this year-end that is burning a hole in my pocket.

Unless you're going to be using that device as a development and test device for a great software idea that might make you money - if you're lucky and have good marketing sense - save the money or at the very least put it in your retirement account.

I tell you, what is it with people wanting to blow their money on useless electronic crap. Please, you don't need it.

And to head off any rationalizations: "I use to read [whatever]!" or whatever, no you don't need it. It's a waste of money.

Notion Ink adam best tablet IMHO (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34807516)

Buy the notion ink Adam it has the same hardware specs as the xoom and it will shipping very soon and I think the best part is that it has a pixelQi screen.
It already has a sweet UI, and I the developers have mention it will be upgradable to 3.0 http://www.notionink.com/

Depends on what you are after. (1)

Sadsfae (242195) | more than 3 years ago | (#34807532)

It boils down to what you are after, the galaxytab is quite small (7" or so) and I could get the same functionality out of a phone. I opted for something a big larger (11") with an NVidia tegra chipset so I could play HD movies. Do you want something with good hardware and size (350USD+) or something small and more economical? (200USD+)

I have the Viewsonic gtablet[1] and it's quite nice. The default firmware/rom that it ships with is horrible but you can use an alternate ROM like TNT Lite[2] and it's really slick. I am able to watch 720p/1080p HD movies on long plane rides (after i've re-encoded them with ffmpeg to fit native reso and mp4 format) use Skype and any other Android apps with an 8-10hr battery life.

[1] - http://www.viewsonic.com/gtablet/ [viewsonic.com]
[2] - http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?t=842004 [xda-developers.com]

Viewsonic G-Tablet (1)

drgould (24404) | more than 3 years ago | (#34807558)

If you have to get one now, the Viewsonic G-Tablet for $400 is as generic an Android tablet as I've seen; Tegra 2 processor, 10.1" 1024 X 600 screen, 512MB RAM, 16GB flash, mini SD card slot, mini and full-size USB ports, B/G/N WiFi, Bluetooth, an honest 8-10 hours of battery life, etc., etc.

If you read the reviews, there seem to be two categories. People who are disappointed with the out-of-the-box Tap-n-Tap interface and return it, and those who spend an hour or two updating the software and are happy with it.

Viewsonic does seem committed to improving the G-Tablet and is reportedly pushing out frequent software updates.

And it's available from Amazon [amazon.com] and Sears [sears.com].

Re:Viewsonic G-Tablet (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34807806)

I've got one and with the guys over at XDA making new "roms" all all the time it is Great!

Re:Viewsonic G-Tablet (1)

intangible (252848) | more than 3 years ago | (#34807826)

This is what I did... The hardware is great, but I wish the screen was a good IPS instead of an average TN...

I fully recommend using the XDA "fixed" versions of the interface, the one from Viewsonic is slow as molasses and basically tries to make your Tegra based tablet into a glorified picture frame....

This solution is not for someone who wants a perfect working tablet now... For that, the Samsung Tab is probably the best available (assuming you didn't get an order in for the first production run of the Notion Ink Adam).

I bought it because I consider it a "preview" of the hardware of all the "to be launched" tablets... I really wish Viewsonic had just gave us stock Android 2.2 instead of crapping all over it with a custom awful GUI though.

I completely expect to be able to run Honeycomb on it once it's released through a XDA version of the ROM from another Tegra tablet... I doubt Viewsonic will ever make the GUI as good as it should be.

Don't use a phone enough? (5, Insightful)

cgenman (325138) | more than 3 years ago | (#34807586)

Saying that you won't buy a smartphone because you don't use your phone enough is like saying that you won't buy a computer because you don't use a typewriter enough.

A smartphone is basically a universal data device at your fingertips at all times and all places. When was that movie out? How late is that store open? Where is Grandma's? What was that server's IP? It's Star Trek, man. Star Trek. A phone just lets you talk. The scale of functionality difference is several orders of magnitude.

Re:Don't use a phone enough? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34807822)

Not if you you have to pay $40/month for voice plus a data plan.

I couldn't wait either (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34807600)

and bought the Archos 101 - Really loving it.

Re:I couldn't wait either (1)

codename.matrix (889422) | more than 3 years ago | (#34807910)

Me too, and since the Archos 101 is fairly inexpensive he could just buy it now and if he really uses the tablet a lot buy himself a Honeycomb tablet in 6-8 months. I plan to do the same if Honeycomb really can't run on the Archos 101 and the prices for Honeycomb tablets are good. I think with all the competition coming up you could get an Archos 101 now and a Honeycomb tablet in 8 months for a similar price you would pay for the Galaxy Tab now.

Wrong question (1)

gmuslera (3436) | more than 3 years ago | (#34807666)

You really a tablet? Must be a tablet? You can afford it now, and then later? It must be with android?

My approach would be to get a netvertible (like Samsung sliding PC [engadget.com] or Asus Eee Pad Slider [engadget.com], to put 2 examples on the spotlight right now), on which i could install some kind of Linux, like Ubuntu or Meego, or if no available, Android 3.x or even (bletch!) Windows. But for now for most of the needs of portable computing my N900 works pretty well.

Save it instead (1)

pz (113803) | more than 3 years ago | (#34807680)

1. If you already have an IRA, put it there.
2. If you don't already have an IRA, open one with your bonus.
3. If you are allergic to IRAs (or live outside the US), put your bonus in the highest yield savings / checking account you can find (yeah, I know the yields are terrible, but something is definitely better than nothing).
4. If the bonus is big enough to slice of a small amount to have a nice treat, only then buy something as ephemeral as a tablet.

The economy still is in serious recovery mode. You should be saving and investing right now.

Adam (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34807690)

If I were you I would get Notion Ink's Adam on the next pre-order. They seem to have received very positive press at CES, and their tablet appears to be ahead of the curve by at least a few months.

Depending On Your Needs -- If Comics, Then No (1)

WebScud (662900) | more than 3 years ago | (#34807702)

My sole reason for owning a table would be for digital comics. comiXology is excellent on both Android and iOS (and your purchases are cross-platform!) While comiXology has Marvel and DC, they don't have some of the smaller and well known publishers like Dark Horse and IDW. Those are only on iOS and PSP.

NO, you wait. (1)

neokushan (932374) | more than 3 years ago | (#34807706)

No, you don't buy one now. Even Google themselves said that Android wasn't designed for Tablets yet (With Honeycomb being the first "proper" version for tablets).
Furthermore, these first-gen Android tablets are pretty great in some ways, but they're still the first generation. Waiting for Honeycomb is by far the most sensible thing to do, particularly as it will coincide with a hardware refresh of sorts (such as nVidia's Tegra 2 being available).
You COULD get an existing tablet and then hack Honeycomb onto it, but who knows how well that'll work out. You can wait 2 or 3 months and get a much better investment.

iPad more hackable (2, Interesting)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 3 years ago | (#34807720)

The iPad i(and in general iOS devices) are actually more "hackable" in the classic sense of the word.

If you like to write software, either is fine. But the spirit of hacking is also partly in altering what is there to suit a need you have.

Because jailbreaking enables use of the MobileSubstrate [iphonedevwiki.net], and most applications are written in Objective-C, you can not only write your own applications but very easily add hooks and modifications into existing applications - it's a lot easier to hack an addition to an application you already like to make it do something extra, than to write your own application from scratch.

Re:iPad more hackable (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34807804)

No! Parent comment contains knowledge gained from doing research in to an Apple product! Do not listen! LA LA LA CAN'T HEAR YOU!

Wait for MeeGo (2)

PortaDiFerro (1719902) | more than 3 years ago | (#34807760)

I'm following the tablets rather eagerly as well. Only this xmas did I get acquainted with Android (2.1) phone and I'm positively surprised. Still, personally I'll be waiting until MeeGo tablets start popping up before I make my decision about a tablet. Unless I run into an irresistible offer as I did with the phone.

Waiting for Godot (2)

ChunderDownunder (709234) | more than 3 years ago | (#34808276)

You might be waiting a while. There's still no N900 successor as Nokia puts its energies into resurrecting Symbian[1] via a shiny Qt interface. As for 'tablet' devices, I think other vendors would be waiting for some traction before launching a Meego branded product.

Android and Meego are both Linux distros. So in theory you can buy an Android (or Win7) tablet today and 'upgrade' to Meego when it's ready. Assuming you don't buy a locked-down appliance...

Buy? (4, Interesting)

SphericalCrusher (739397) | more than 3 years ago | (#34807828)

Buy? I took an older Motion Tablet PC I had, stuck an extra stick of RAM in it, and formatted it to install the Android OS. It works really well. If you are tech-savvy, I'd recommend doing the same before buying a high-dollar iPad competitor android tablet. If the price is right though, I'd recommend the purchase. Browsing the Internet on the built-in Chrome browser with flash playback works really well. Much like the iPad is a large iPhone in a sense, this is a large version of an Android phone. I'm really impressed with the tablet OS. The tablet PC has a gig

Archos works now with 2.2.1 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34807850)

I'm hacking just fine now with an Archos 70 (7") tablet running Android 2.2.1. However, I'm preparing an app for Android Market, and this was a relatively inexpensive investment as a development testbed (~$340). No telco wireless account needed. I have no doubt that this Archos will draw some flames, but it does what I need.

I'm still scratching my head over the notion that a dual processor will be needed to run Honeycomb for a "tablet-specific" version of Android. There's still lots of work that can be done with Froyo and Gingerbread on tablets. Whiz all you want to on iOS, but you shouldn't need 2 gigaflop-plus processors to host a very functional tablet-specific app environment.

Of course, If all you want is to wave the cheapest and fastest hackable big red hardware d!ck, wait on...

BTW, serious developers are making $$ now serving both iOS and Android markets. Yeah, I can be a fanboy too, but my royalty $$ have proven the value of mastering both the iOS and Android dev environments, no matter what I really prefer best.

compromise (1)

neitzert (184856) | more than 3 years ago | (#34807938)

I was in the same place about honeycomb and decided to compromise between a cheaper android tablet now and a high end honeycomb tablet when they come out.

I chose the Kendo M7 and paid aprox USD 200 for it....

http://www.expert.se/Product/Product.aspx?id=5985637 (google translate is your friend) ...and I am fairly happy with it for ebooks and video.

You didn't say what you were going to use it for (5, Insightful)

Overzeetop (214511) | more than 3 years ago | (#34808028)

That's really why you are getting a tablet - to do things, right?

So, are you going to be telneting around, or developing,t aking it wardriving, or trying to create art? Are you going to be using it to read email and surf the web from your couch, plus stream or watch movies on it? Do you want it to impress your friends?

See, that will answer your question. If you're going to be just hacking to hack, get a mid-level Android box (sorry, too many for me to keep up with). If you're going to be surfing and looking at email, get an iPad - unless you want flash, in which case get the top of the line Android tablet today. Want to impress your friends - well, the last recommendation covers it - Android if your friends are hard core linux geeks, iPad if your friends are anything else. Don't forget to ask yourself how big a screen you need. The 7" and smaller models do NOT work well for any sort of book use, save novels, unless you like squinting.

Based on your description of what you want (i.e. - you really don't know for certain) - put that bonus somewhere that you can't touch it for 6 months, and then decide next summer what you want after Honeycomb is out.

When?... why? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34808044)

WHY should I buy an android tablet?

Honeycomb doesn't need dual core CPU (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34808048)

"I've had my eye on the Galaxy Tab, though it sounds like it won't support Honeycomb."

Yes only if you only ever read slashdot.....

http://www.engadget.com/2011/01/06/honeycomb-will-not-require-dual-core-cpu-as-minimum-hardware-spe/

Do yourself a favor and read a dedicated gadget blog. I recommend Engadget, though many will say they are biased toward *insert whatever company person who makes statement loves*.

In anycase, you should wait though, if only for some of the amazing new Tegra 2 based tablets

Tegra 2 is awesome (1)

Fnkmaster (89084) | more than 3 years ago | (#34808062)

I'd recommend the Viewsonic G Tablet now except that the LCD screen sort of sucks. But the performance is absolutely awesome (with updated software - the original stock software it shipped with was very, very buggy and beta quality).

So I'd wait for a 10.1" Tegra 2 option with an IPS or other better quality screen. Twisted Craptastic errr Nemastic LCDs should be outlawed.

What are you going to use it for? (1)

Dcnjoe60 (682885) | more than 3 years ago | (#34808084)

The real question that needs to be answered by the original poster is "What are you going to use it for?" Tablets look nice and all, but any real typing on them is problematic. I've used both a tablet and a netbook and writing papers or working on coding is an order of magnitude better on the netbook with a real keyboard vs a tablet. You simply cannot touch type on one.

If all you want to do is browse the net, check some emails and use facebook/twitter, then a tablet would be okay. But if you need to do real work, a reak keyboard wins every time. That's before even looking at the price difference. Most netbooks are 1/3 the cost of a tablet.

A tablet might make you feel cool, but a netbook means you are smart. In the long run, smart trumps cool.

AI Smartbook (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34808106)

I would recommend AI Smartbook (http://alwaysinnovating.com/products/smartbook.htm) which I would eventually buy myself.
Its highlights:
* Unique hardware design (the system is split between several devices that fit together: of a very powerful palmtop MID, a tablet and keyboard + additional battery which turns the later into a laptop. (There is also an HDMI thing that allows the system to become a HTPC of sorts). These all could be purchased separately and constitute a single system when used together.
* Extremely good autonomous work record
* Free software and Open hardware (!)
* Advanced virtualisation capabilities
* Active team behind it
Is this enough? :)

what do you need? (0)

t2t10 (1909766) | more than 3 years ago | (#34808128)

The Galaxy Tab is a great device: portable, tons of software, fast. It works fine with 2.2, you don't need Honeycomb (but Honeycomb has dropped the dual processor requirement, so it may be coming). If you need a tablet now, that's the one to get.

If you don't need one urgently, just wait and see.

Smartphone for $40 / year (1)

mmmmbeer (107215) | more than 3 years ago | (#34808248)

Yes, I said less than $40 per year! I know you said you're interested in a tablet, but I think you might like this idea instead. Here's how to do it: First, buy an android CDMA phone at full price. I got mine from wirefly.com. Yes, that costs more up front, but you'll make it back in less than a year. So I guess that technically makes it more than $40/year, but it really depends on how long you keep the phone. In any case it's going to be a lot less than any of the other carriers.

Anyway, I use and recommend the Droid X, but any Verizon or Sprint android phone should work fine. Instead of activating with Verizon or Sprint, activate with Page Plus. They're a Verizon reseller, which means you get the Verizon network at a fraction of the price. Buy a $10 standard plan card. Be sure to turn off 3G data in your phone, or it will eat up your money really fast. You'll use wi-fi instead. Set up a google voice account if you haven't already, and set up that account on your phone. Download sipdroid from the market, and use it to set up a pbxes account. Set up your gv account to forward to both your phone and your gtalk account (which forwards to your pbxes phone, ie. sipdroid). Now you can make and receive free calls wherever you have wi-fi, and you can use your page plus account when you don't. Since most of your calls will probably be when you have wi-fi, the $10 will be good for 120 days, and as long as you activate another $10 card before those minutes expire, all of your minutes are good for another 120 days. You will only be able to use wi-fi (not 3G) for data, but I rarely find that to be a problem. You can also turn on 3G whenever you want, if you don't mind paying $1.20/MB. If you find yourself using up the minutes too often, they also have other options, including an $80 card that extends you account for up to a year, or monthly options that include a decent amount of 3G data. You can find out more details about this in howardforums' page plus section.

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