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Other than Brewing => The Pub => Topic started by: corkybstewart on April 27, 2013, 05:42:00 PM

Title: Best tablet not made by Apple
Post by: corkybstewart on April 27, 2013, 05:42:00 PM
All you tech savvy people, I need your help.  I need (want) a tablet but I really do not like Apple.  I've never owned an Apple product and don't want to start now, so what's my best choice.  I need it mostly for office work and wasting time on beer forums, I play no games so that doesn't matter to me.
Title: Best tablet not made by Apple
Post by: denny on April 27, 2013, 05:59:13 PM
I'd never owned an Apple product, either, until I got an iPad.  I think it's fantastic.  There are a lot of great tablets out there, but you'll do yourself a disservice if you don't at least look at one.  For one thing, there are a lot more apps available for iPad than other tablets.
Title: Re: Best tablet not made by Apple
Post by: thebigbaker on April 27, 2013, 06:22:26 PM
Not sure why the dislike of Apple, but I would seriously give the iPads a look.  I've had several clients try several different Android and Windows tablets and they always end up getting an iPad to replace those tablets eventually.  When you say "office work," what kind of work are you talking about?  Depending on what work you want to do with it, I can recommend a tablet for you.  Any tablet will be able to "waste time" on the beer forums ;D
Title: Re: Best tablet not made by Apple
Post by: nateo on April 27, 2013, 07:58:27 PM
I don't want to hijack the thread too much, but I'm trying to convince my wife she should get a tablet, but she'd need to use the Microsoft office suite. I know skydrive has some sweet office apps, but I think she'd rather have a native solution. Any thoughts?
Title: Re: Best tablet not made by Apple
Post by: sparkleberry on April 27, 2013, 08:19:53 PM
i have no need for a tablet, but i have bought two. one for my mom and one for my dad. they were both ipads. they work the way they should. they are easy to use. my dad has no technical savvy but was navigating the ipad in no time. office is coming soon i believe for the iOS. it's a little pricey but the great thing about apple is the software and hardware work very well together because they are designed to work well together. they execute a rock solid operating system. not telling you to get an ipad, just giving you my indirect experience. yes, i am an apple owner and bummed about some of the direction they are taking but i know their products will work, crash free.
Title: Best tablet not made by Apple
Post by: bluesman on April 27, 2013, 08:26:02 PM
I'd never owned an Apple product, either, until I got an iPad.  I think it's fantastic.  There are a lot of great tablets out there, but you'll do yourself a disservice if you don't at least look at one.  For one thing, there are a lot more apps available for iPad than other tablets.

 I must say that I agree with Denny here. Give the Apple tablet a look see and decide for yourself. I bought the iPad 4 recently and it is amazing. I appreciate it more and more as I use it. In fact, I can't believe it took me this long to buy it. Five stars for the ipad 4!
Title: Re: Best tablet not made by Apple
Post by: punatic on April 27, 2013, 08:53:28 PM
Funny that all other tablets compare themselves to iPads.  iPads just keep on keepin' on.

I had the latest full size iPad (gen 4 - LOVE the retina display!), but it was too big for me, so I gave it to my son and got an iPad mini for myself.  I hear that there will be a mini with a retina display coming out this summer, or so.  Guess I'll have to give this mini to SWMBO and buy another one once the mini with retina comes out.
Title: Re: Best tablet not made by Apple
Post by: grod on April 27, 2013, 09:03:52 PM
I bought Mrs G an iPad last year because she liked her iPhone.  I dislike Apple stuff (just because) so I decided to buy myself a Samsung Glaxy Note 10.1 and I love it.  The Note also comes with a stick thingy that you can do stuff with but I'm yet to work that part out.

love

g
Title: Best tablet not made by Apple
Post by: denny on April 27, 2013, 09:06:03 PM
I don't want to hijack the thread too much, but I'm trying to convince my wife she should get a tablet, but she'd need to use the Microsoft office suite. I know skydrive has some sweet office apps, but I think she'd rather have a native solution. Any thoughts?

I use an app called quickoffice.  Word, Excel, and I think PowerPoint.  Costs about 20 bucks and is pretty full featured.  I'm working on writing a book with it and it's pretty good.  Lives on the iPad and you can access files either on the iPd or cloud.
Title: Re: Best tablet not made by Apple
Post by: erockrph on April 27, 2013, 09:31:27 PM
My wife and I have been Android users since the original Droid. We won a Nexus 7 several months ago and are really happy with it. If you're an Android user, or just don't want to give your cash to Apple, then it's worth checking out.
Title: Re: Best tablet not made by Apple
Post by: corkybstewart on April 28, 2013, 09:19:29 AM
My wife and I have been Android users since the original Droid. We won a Nexus 7 several months ago and are really happy with it. If you're an Android user, or just don't want to give your cash to Apple, then it's worth checking out.
Thanks.  I don't want to give money to Apple, I don't like their business practice.  My wife has an iphone, she can only gets apps from Apple Store and to get the free ones she has to give a valid credit card number.  She refuses (as would I).  I love my Android, I'll look at the Nexus 7.
Title: Re: Best tablet not made by Apple
Post by: nateo on April 28, 2013, 10:09:06 AM
Does anyone use a Chromebook? I thought that might be a better solution since it has a built-in keyboard.

Denny, you're probably using one of those wireless keyboards, right?
Title: Re: Best tablet not made by Apple
Post by: denny on April 28, 2013, 11:18:22 AM
Does anyone use a Chromebook? I thought that might be a better solution since it has a built-in keyboard.

Denny, you're probably using one of those wireless keyboards, right?

Nope, I'm not.  If I was doing more writing on it, I'd probably get a case with a built in keyboard, but for me the onscreen keyboard is good enough for what I need to do.
Title: Re: Best tablet not made by Apple
Post by: euge on April 28, 2013, 02:14:55 PM
Ipads are nifty if dumbed down a bit. The issue is with itunes primarily. I don't want to be chained to the Apple ecosystem. My Acer A300 is far more useful in my opinion and the android os is flexible and friendly. Furthermore it has a full size usb port, sd slot and a micro hdmi out socket. 

Plug it in via usb to my laptop and files are easily transferred without the need for any additional and restrictive software. Maybe a bit less polished than the popular ipad but everything worked at unboxing.

I bought it last year so there are probably better newer models available. 
Title: Re: Best tablet not made by Apple
Post by: smkranz on April 28, 2013, 02:42:09 PM
Going out on a limb here, but I love the HP TouchPads (I have 3 of 'em).  Sadly, it is a discontinued device but can still be found new for about $250 or pre-owned for less on eBay.

Best thing about it is, it can dual-boot two operating systems...its native webOS, or Android.  Plus on the webOS side of the device, you can load a very robust stable of homebrew apps, patches and tweaks.  So although there are very few new apps coming through HP's App Catalog, you have homebrew apps on the webos side, and Android on that side of the device.

Full disclosure: I volunteer as an "Expert" on HP's support forums, primarily for webOS and Palm (yeah, remember them?) devices, and soon for HP's upcoming Slate 7 Android tablet which is expected out very soon.
Title: Re: Best tablet not made by Apple
Post by: thebigbaker on April 28, 2013, 03:40:38 PM
Going out on a limb here, but I love the HP TouchPads (I have 3 of 'em).  Sadly, it is a discontinued device but can still be found new for about $250 or pre-owned for less on eBay.

Best thing about it is, it can dual-boot two operating systems...its native webOS, or Android.  Plus on the webOS side of the device, you can load a very robust stable of homebrew apps, patches and tweaks.  So although there are very few new apps coming through HP's App Catalog, you have homebrew apps on the webos side, and Android on that side of the device.

Full disclosure: I volunteer as an "Expert" on HP's support forums, primarily for webOS and Palm (yeah, remember them?) devices, and soon for HP's upcoming Slate 7 Android tablet which is expected out very soon.

+1 to the Touchpads!  I was lucky enough to get a couple when they were discontinued and on sale for $99.  I too ported over Android ICS and with the updates the HP Touchpads are great!  I've actually given mine to my 3-yr-old daughter to play learning games on since I don't really use the tablet much.
Title: Re: Best tablet not made by Apple
Post by: euge on April 28, 2013, 03:48:30 PM
I thought HP was getting out of the tablet biz? Slate 7?
Title: Re: Best tablet not made by Apple
Post by: flbrewer on April 28, 2013, 05:10:04 PM
All you tech savvy people, I need your help.  I need (want) a tablet but I really do not like Apple.  I've never owned an Apple product and don't want to start now, so what's my best choice.  I need it mostly for office work and wasting time on beer forums, I play no games so that doesn't matter to me.
Go to an Apple store, play around with one. Perhaps an iPad mini? Chances are you'll walk out with one. They are easy to use, great products. Good luck to you.
Title: Re: Best tablet not made by Apple
Post by: thebigbaker on April 28, 2013, 05:22:48 PM
I thought HP was getting out of the tablet biz? Slate 7?

They did.  They made those Touchpads a couple of years ago, a couple of months after their release, they discontinued them and sold them for about $130 - $99 (reg. price was $400 - $500).  I want to say this was two years ago, maybe a little less. 
Title: Re: Best tablet not made by Apple
Post by: smkranz on April 28, 2013, 06:00:39 PM
I thought HP was getting out of the tablet biz? Slate 7?

HP is getting back into that game with the Slate 7.  It's a 7" Android tablet.  Android 4.1, with the addition of Beats Audio and HP ePrint.  MSRP $169.

http://m.hp.com/us/en/ads/slate-7/landing.html
Title: Re: Best tablet not made by Apple
Post by: reverseapachemaster on April 29, 2013, 07:06:49 AM
Personally I'm waiting for a functional windows-based tablet because I use too much software that isn't and probably won't be available for either android or iOS.

My wife bought the Samsung Note II as a replacement for her laptop because she doesn't do much on her home computer and when she needs to type long documents or put music on her ipod she can either use my laptop, her work laptop, or an old laptop we keep as a backup. She really likes the Note II and from playing with it a little myself it's a very fast and very stable system. It's on the higher end of the tablet market (but still cheaper than an equivalent ipad) but it's a 10" screen and runs very fast. I think Samsung products are all generally very good and there are some Samsung tablets with a lower price point. Bluetooth keyboards are widely available for the tablets, both built into cases and free-standing.

To answer Nateo's question, I don't think Office is available for either format yet but I can only imagine it will be a matter of time before that changes because the absence of Office is a key reason why a lot of people have not replaced their laptops with tablets. However, there are some decent options available for android. I believe Polaris Office is included on all android products. I don't like it on my phone but it's fairly comparable to Office on my wife's tablet and saves/loads Office formats. On my phone I use Documents To Go Pro, which is $15 and also works with Office formats and pulls documents from the device and Google Drive, which is a huge plus because I use Google Drive to store a lot of work documents. It's not as robust in functions as Polaris but works more efficiently on the phone and I really only need it for word processing. You can always access Google Drive online and use their tools. Same goes for OpenOffice.

We're not completely anti-Apple in my house but I am not in love with their products. I have an ipod I use at the gym and it is fine for that purpose. My wife also has an ipod and an iphone. She likes her phone but it's a 3 and Apple has decided it won't update the OS on older models so when her apps update they don't always work, so the phone is losing a lot of functionality. That's the whole problem I have with Apple. They design all products so you never have a complete product, so you feel like you always have to buy the new product, and when you have a product it eventually becomes irrelevant due to Apple's control over all the software. Personally I also think the products are designed to force users into simplistic functionality and I don't like that. Otherwise they are great devices and there are plenty of good reasons to go with the ipad if it's a good fit for your needs and preferences.

Title: Re: Best tablet not made by Apple
Post by: MDixon on April 29, 2013, 09:27:12 AM
I would take a hard look at why you need the Tablet. My wife got me a Samsung Galaxy 7 (something) and before I got an iPhone I primarily used it to snap photos of beer and to post on Facebook. Other than that some web surfing while watching TV or a game. Now that I have an iPhone I really don't need it, other than the screen size is bigger. My work encourages us to purchase a partially subsidized iPad, but I refuse to put money out of my pocket for something I will almost exclusively use for work. For work it would be useful, I carry a binder of documents which could be presented in a digital format like an iPad in an instant, but until it's free you can bet I'll still tote around the binder.

If it was just a want kinda thing I would look to getting an iPhone.

My $0.02. Keep in mind I gravitate to my desktop computer and spend a crapload of time on my laptop for work.
Title: Re: Best tablet not made by Apple
Post by: punatic on April 29, 2013, 09:52:47 AM
A bit of an aside:
I just bought a Jawbone Big Jambox bluetooth speaker that absolutely rocks,  it is the size of a brick, lasts about 14 hours (or more) on a charge, connects wirelessly to my tablet and phone,  and sounds amazing for its size.  Found it at a good price on eBay.
Title: Re: Best tablet not made by Apple
Post by: corkybstewart on April 29, 2013, 11:53:20 AM
I would take a hard look at why you need the Tablet.

If it was just a want kinda thing I would look to getting an iPhone.

My $0.02. Keep in mind I gravitate to my desktop computer and spend a crapload of time on my laptop for work.
I have to look at well logs all day, so I need a bigger screen than any kind of phone has.  But I get tired of lugging my 17" laptop when I travel, so I'm looking for something in between. My Samsung phone has the biggest screen I can find but it just doesn't let me look at the logs in a useful way. I also have to open Excel and word documents, but I've used products like Open Office so I don't necessarily need  MS Office
Title: Re: Best tablet not made by Apple
Post by: MDixon on April 29, 2013, 12:41:25 PM
Put the tablet in your hot little hand before making a decision. My wife's iPad feels like a rock.

Looks like the iPad is about 1.5 lbs, you can get covers that weigh less than a half pound, but a keyboard cover is 3/4 lb plus.
Title: Re: Best tablet not made by Apple
Post by: grych22 on April 29, 2013, 02:05:30 PM
Everyone is obviously different, but after years of laptops and Android tablets (I don't care for Apple and its ecosystem), I went with a Microsoft Surface Pro.  I thought I was done with Microsoft and was pulling away with an increasing dependence to Google, but I'm getting pulled back in.  I really like it and it now is my laptop/tablet replacement for work and personal use.  I use a 64GB micro SD card with it.  It's a little on the heavy side, but I have a small reader or can use my phone for night time book reading if I want something lighter.  I even left Google apps for my work e-mail/calendar/sync and went to Microsoft Exchange Online for $4/month. Good luck!
Title: Re: Best tablet not made by Apple
Post by: punatic on April 29, 2013, 10:23:15 PM
Put the tablet in your hot little hand before making a decision. My wife's iPad feels like a rock.

Looks like the iPad is about 1.5 lbs, you can get covers that weigh less than a half pound, but a keyboard cover is 3/4 lb plus.

I bought a Belkin Snap Shield case that snaps in place to cover the back and sides - and an iPad Smart Cover to cover the front of my mini.  They provide excellent protection, look great, and add little weight or thickness to the tablet.

The nice things about the Smart Cover are, it attaches magnetically and is easy to remove and reattach, when you close the cover the iPad goes to sleep, when you open the cover the iPad turns on.  It doubles as a two position book stand.