Tablet advice - iPad or Android?

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Jeremy Harris   10 GW

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Tablet advice - iPad or Android?

Post by Jeremy Harris » Sep 24 2012 1:54pm

Some background:

I currently use an old Samsung netbook for browsing, email, viewing photos when out and about, etc. It's fine, but is showing it's age and there's a fair bit of wear and tear on things like the touch pad and keys, so I suspect it won't be long before it starts to get a bit iffy.

So, I am looking around for a replacement, and am wondering whether to switch to a tablet, rather than another netbook. Windows has always pissed me off big time, and having recently replaced my main PC with a Win 7 machine that opinion hasn't changed (if anything, Win 7 is even more frustrating than previous versions, especially when it comes to stopping you communicating with it over a LAN that's got non-Win 7 machines on it) . If it wasn't for the investment (in learning time and money) in things like CAD software etc I'd have stopped using Windows years ago.

I'm leaning towards an iPad, as I like the display, there seems to be a wide variety of apps for it and it may be easier for an IT amateur like me to get to grips with. The big downside is no keyboard, which may well prove to be a show stopper. The Android tablets seem to include some with clip on keyboards, like the Asus Transformer. This would seem to make them a lot easier to use for things like this - scribbling stuff on ES. The downside for me is Google. I inherently distrust Google, their company motto, "do no evil" is now a sick joke, and as a company they clearly have no respect for privacy or the rights of the individual. If Android spies on users in the same way as the Google search engine does, and if it secretly collects and uses personal data for the benefit of Google, as all Google PC applications do, then I'd rather not have anything to do with it.

My needs are fairly simple:

- I don't need mobile connectivity, just WiFi.

- I do want something that's intuitive and easy to use; as I get older I find I have less patience when it comes to getting things to work (did I mention how bloody irritating Windows has become?).

- A decent amount of storage is a must, or the ability to use SD, or maybe uSD, cards to store photos etc (I value privacy, so won't entertain the idea of using the cloud).

- I want a decent display, and was mightily impressed with that on the iPad I saw recently.

- Not overly fussed about size and weight, but wouldn't want a display smaller than that on this old Samsung NC10 (around 10" diagonal).

- In terms of apps, all I really need is good web browsing, email and the ability to store and view photos and videos. GPS and mapping would be a "nice to have"; for example, I currently have large scale maps of the whole of the UK on this netbook (using Memory Map).

- Battery life isn't that critical, as I'm rarely away from power for more than a few hours.

- Budget isn't a major issue, I'll pretty much pay what I need to to get something that fits my needs well.


So, the question I'm asking the learned folk of ES is this:

Which tablet will best fit my needs? Or, should I forget about going down this route for now and just get another Windows netbook?
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cal3thousand   1.21 GW

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Re: Tablet advice - iPad or Android?

Post by cal3thousand » Sep 24 2012 2:03pm

I would look at getting one of the ASUS pads. The Infinity Pad http://eee.asus.com/en/eeepad/transform ... /features/ , is a particularly sweet device.

I think it matches well to your requirements and the cost compared to the iPad is another benefit. I'm planning on getting one this holiday season unless the Padfone II from ASUS comes out by then.

I think they are the best value right now at $500-600 for a full setup.
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Re: Tablet advice - iPad or Android?

Post by ohzee » Sep 24 2012 2:08pm

My son has an eepad and loves it.. My step father has a ipad and well he struggles with it.

Now my boy's a lot more pc literate , but IMO the ipad is gimped because your required to use itunes for everything.

Want to put your own movie on there to watch it's a pita.

Going forward I think there will be a lot more droids then ipads as the platform matures. And you can get a nice
adroid device for a faction of the price of an ipad.

So unless your a Apple geek or die hard id go for the eepad. Ill be buying the latest one next month for his bday.
The keyboard that goes with it also is very very nice.. makes it like a little tablet.

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Re: Tablet advice - iPad or Android?

Post by Jeremy Harris » Sep 24 2012 2:29pm

Thanks a lot folks, that's really good to know, particularly the tie to iTunes for video stuff etc for the iPad. That'd be a major PITA, as I'd inevitable want to view video in a pretty wide variety of formats at some time (I've lost count of the number of codec updates I've had to do to get VLC to show various videos on this netbook, for example).

My limited research had already flagged the Asus as a probable contender, so it's nice to have some confirmation that I'm somewhat looking in the right direction.
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Re: Tablet advice - iPad or Android?

Post by pdf » Sep 24 2012 2:35pm

Personally, my needs are the same as yours and I prefer an iPad. But it is just me. I have an iPhone also. For my computers, I have Windows machines. This is primarily because I use a lot of technical, specialized software that only runs under Windows and I don't like maintaining two different OSs.

Well, maybe not the same as yours, exactly. If an iPad doesn't do it, I was probably just screwing around anyway and can live without it. I use an iPad and iPhone for specific tasks they they perform excellently. However, Apple is not known to be forgiving to off-the-page mods.
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Re: Tablet advice - iPad or Android?

Post by mark5 » Sep 24 2012 3:09pm

ohzee wrote:Now my boy's a lot more pc literate , but IMO the ipad is gimped because your required to use itunes for everything.

Want to put your own movie on there to watch it's a pita.
You don't need to use iTunes to transfer everything. I have iPad apps, for example media players, that can receive and store video or audio files through wi-fi from a Windows PC. On the iPad, apps are each sandboxed for security though so such files can't be easily seen and played by a different media player app--the media files are in the apps own filesystem, not visible to other apps. Also, I don't know that the iPad has any external storage besides cloud. External Bluetooth keyboards are available.

I have an iPad but having tried an Samsung Android tablet might rather have that instead. The iPad is a little restricting, too many rules for me.

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Re: Tablet advice - iPad or Android?

Post by ohzee » Sep 24 2012 4:27pm

yea I installed a Video player on my step fathers ipad that would let me xfer files via wifi , but I still feel the thing is gimped.

it's not easy for someone who's not pretty handy with those type of devices to do something outside what apple wants you to do.

That's my take on it.. I also have a mac pro I use for work and I love the machine.. ill probably never have another laptop but a mac
I like it that much.. still it's a lot more flexible then their damn ipad.

/rant off

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Re: Tablet advice - iPad or Android?

Post by cal3thousand » Sep 24 2012 4:46pm

At least the "new" iPad actually has a Retina display versus the first 2 iPads. My 1st Gen Nook Color had a better resolution and it wasn't even a real tablet.

I'm sure the iPad is easier to use for the general public, but I don't play those proprietary charger / serial interfaces game.
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Re: Tablet advice - iPad or Android?

Post by liveforphysics » Sep 24 2012 5:33pm

If you want to do anything cool with it, ipad is automatically out. Ipads do only what apple wants you to be able to do with it, and oddly they exclude you from a huge amount of very basic core functions. If one landed on my door step, I would use it for a cutting board in the kitchen, putting it in the dishwasher to clean it when dirty.

Nexus7 tablet is a screaming good deal for $199 shipped. There are also some great units with bigger screens and things for more money.

All android devices can use blue-tooth keyboards and/or mouse (or wired USB keyboards or wifi keyboards etc etc). Some of them just require some hacking to make it work, which has become an effortless thing to do with support from the awesome XDA developers community.
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Re: Tablet advice - iPad or Android?

Post by heathyoung » Sep 24 2012 5:39pm

I might get shouted down for this, but the windows suface (with windows 8) is pretty decent as well - M$ have come up with a decent touchscreen interface.
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Re: Tablet advice - iPad or Android?

Post by bigmoose » Sep 24 2012 5:44pm

liveforphysics wrote:If one landed on my door step, I would use it for a cutting board in the kitchen, putting it in the dishwasher to clean it when dirty.
Here I am with the new iPad my daughter got me!! :mrgreen:

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Re: Tablet advice - iPad or Android?

Post by rojitor » Sep 24 2012 6:54pm

I own this http://www.notionink.com/ i can use it under the sun. I picked it because i love the pixel qi screen.

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Re: Tablet advice - iPad or Android?

Post by mark5 » Sep 24 2012 7:27pm

An Android might also be more accessible for making Speedict-like apps or some other automation if Jeremy Harris ever wants to do that.

Or whenever possible maybe just use an external keyboard and mouse on the Samsung NC10--still a good netbook. Tablets should get better and cheaper yet.

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Re: Tablet advice - iPad or Android?

Post by dingoEsride » Sep 24 2012 8:37pm

There may be a problem posting pictures using Ipad as is the case with Iphone where there is no problem with android

Batfinks post from earlier here

The problem arises when you want to choose a picture, on phones and device using ioS apple software you cannot browse to find the photo, some android with manufacturers own skin and a lot of other phones are the same,
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Re: Tablet advice - iPad or Android?

Post by AussieJester » Sep 24 2012 8:42pm

Definately Android tablet Jermey...I use the girlfriends samsung Galaxy 10.1 daily now
instead of my pc, when not using that its the HTC Sensation the pc rarely gets a look in these days.
Once you get one you wont look back...+1 to XDA developers community Luke mentioned above.

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Re: Tablet advice - iPad or Android?

Post by kfong » Sep 24 2012 9:52pm

Jeremy, iPad 3, my eyes thank me each time when I'm on it for long periods. Biggest reason I went this route. Crap, the resolution is better than my desktop. For me all tablets function pretty much the same. My two main uses are browsing the web and reading PDF files. Both of which are done very well on the iPad. Email, Excel, and appointments are the other main uses. I don't use it for movies or music. I have my stereo and home theater for that purpose. I use it for work more than I use it for home these days. Don't find a need for a keyboard, but you can easily use a Bluetooth keyboard with it. Windows 8 is coming out and is directed also towards the tablet market. That might sway me over just to be able to run pc stuff and a bigger screen, but I find the iPad to be just the right size for couch surfing. I'm on it more than I'm on my computer. I love the 8 hour run time. It just works, so I have no complaints. Can't really say anything bad about it other than it not supporting flash media.
Last edited by kfong on Sep 24 2012 10:36pm, edited 3 times in total.

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Re: Tablet advice - iPad or Android?

Post by kfong » Sep 24 2012 10:01pm

One of the guys at work has a nexus7, I wanted to check it out before I upgraded my iPad. Was disappointed with the size. Too small for useful web browsing. I did like the interface, but still turned around and bought the latest iPad. If they made one with the same size, runtime and resolution then I would switch over.

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Re: Tablet advice - iPad or Android?

Post by full-throttle » Sep 25 2012 12:51am

Why don't you visit a computer store - they should have a couple of ipads and a bunch of other tablets on display. Try them out, visit you favourite websites, play a video or two. Then just get whichever you like the most.

BTW a camera connect kit allows SD cards and USB keyboards to connect to ipads.

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Re: Tablet advice - iPad or Android?

Post by Jeremy Harris » Sep 25 2012 2:08am

Thanks for all the useful suggestions, and for filling in some of the gaps in my knowledge about the pros and and cons of these things.

This was prompted by having a brief play with an iPad belonging to a chap I met on holiday recently. The display, in particular, was the thing that amazed me, as it was just so much brighter and clearer than that on this old NC10. Both of us were using these things for the same purpose, checking email, doing a bit of web browsing, downloading photos and video for display and checking out mapping/aerial photos of the area. A tablet seemed to be so much easier to use than a netbook for this type of thing that it got me thinking.

Given the pretty resounding vote in favour of Android, it looks like I need to go and have a look at one of the better 10" tablets that run this to see what they're like. The previously mentioned Asus Transformer Pad Infinity looks like the front runner at the moment, as it seems to have pretty much everything I'm looking for, plus it has a display that is reputed to be nearly as good as that on the iPad.

My only other reservation is the evil nature of Google. I inherently avoid using Google since they seem to have decided that it's OK to steal personal data, spy on users of their software and generally behave in a pretty unethical (to me) way. Maybe I'm just of an age where personal privacy is of more value, but I really don't want to use something that's going to collect data from me in order to spam me with targeted advertising or sell personal data on for profit. If Android has got the same sort of built in data collection stuff that Google seem to build in to pretty much everything they do, then I'd need to be able to find away to block it, just on a point of principle (for example, I use Google Sharing to block all the insidious little Google personal data collection elements that exist in millions of websites).
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Re: Tablet advice - iPad or Android?

Post by amberwolf » Sep 25 2012 2:49am

If you use Firefox (probably opera and chrome and others) you can use AdBlockPlus and NoScript, among others, to block such data collection on browsers.

You might need a firewall to block it on other apps.

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Re: Tablet advice - iPad or Android?

Post by Jeremy Harris » Sep 25 2012 3:34am

amberwolf wrote:If you use Firefox (probably opera and chrome and others) you can use AdBlockPlus and NoScript, among others, to block such data collection on browsers.

You might need a firewall to block it on other apps.
Thanks AW, I'm already running Firefox, Adblock and NoScript on this PC, together with Google Sharing to render the data Google collects from their spyware advert elements (in order for them to spam me with targeted ads) from making any sense to them. If I can do something similar with a browser running on Android then that'll do fine.
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Re: Tablet advice - iPad or Android?

Post by dodjob » Sep 25 2012 4:03am

Hi there,
well the Ipad 3 has indeed a good screen resolution. That doesn't mean that other don't ^^
Like liveforphysics mentioned it there is TONS of other tablets out there under android which should fulfill your needs for... the half of the money :)
Just a though: If you buy two nexus 7 you will have an accrued 14" screen (!!!) dual hand possibility, real 3D stereo handset, limitless customization possibilty... for 2/3 of the price of an Ipad. And don't tell me that "price isn't the matter", it is, with remaining money you can buy you a speedict kit and a bunch of hankies when looking at your dual display with speedict on the left and ES on the right listening to your last favorite song:
Image
For any concern over the Android system intuitiveness, smoothness and overall quality, try a Jelly Bean powered device ;) it's just awesome!
Hope it helps,
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Re: Tablet advice - iPad or Android?

Post by Rodney64 » Sep 25 2012 4:10am

I've used both, I prefer the iPad we have 2 in our house. A1 for any Warrenty problems and have good resale. Depends where you live as far as price is 500 for an iPad wifi only, android arn't any cheaper.

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Re: Tablet advice - iPad or Android?

Post by dodjob » Sep 25 2012 4:24am

Rodney64 wrote: Depends where you live as far as price is 500 for an iPad wifi only, android arn't any cheaper.
https://play.google.com/store/devices?feature=microsite -.-'
Gruß,
H.
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Re: Tablet advice - iPad or Android?

Post by REdiculous » Sep 25 2012 5:53am

The majority of the good apps will be on both platforms, but some are exclusive. Bad apps are less likely to appear in the iTunes store, in theory.

You should be able to convert your videos so they play on either/any OS, without needing fancy plugins or special apps for playback.

All android devices can use blue-tooth keyboards and/or mouse (or wired USB keyboards or wifi keyboards etc etc). Some of them just require some hacking to make it work, which has become an effortless thing to do with support from the awesome XDA developers community.
Just chat up Sticky Beard and hack your device's system files and you too can save $5 on a keyboard....awesome! :lol:

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