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Official Tablet/Pad/Tab/Touchscreen Computing Discussion
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Are you interested in purchasing a tablet style computing device in the next 6 months?
Yes
85%
 85%  [ 17 ]
No
15%
 15%  [ 3 ]
Total Votes : 20

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greg_mitch



Joined: 03 May 2006
Posts: 5321



PostLink    Posted: Tue Aug 03, 2010 1:16 am    Post subject: Official Tablet/Pad/Tab/Touchscreen Computing Discussion Reply with quote


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Let's leave this thread open to ALL types of tablets. It should include open and closed environments. With keyboards and without. Cellular connectivity and not. etc. etc.

I will lead it off with a quick summary of a few interesting tablets.


APPLE iOS
-Single hardware MFR.
-Single tablet device available currently.
-New to the scene.


Apple's iPad
Discussion HERE


Pros: Great touchscreen, small/lightweight, good battery life, 3G internet option, popular/good development, large screen.
Cons: Apple's closed ecosystem, no input/output connections besides Apple's proprietary cable that requires purchase of adapters to use USB, VGA, etc. Fairly expensive for the limited functionality compared to other offerings.

HP webOS
-One MFR
-One tablet with potential for family of devices
-Software been available in smartphone format for a few years

HP TouchPad


Platform webOS 3.0
Processor 1.2GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon
dual-CPU APQ8060
Display 9.7-inch
Resolution 1024 x 768
Memory 1GB RAM
Storage 16GB / 32GB
Front camera 1.3 megapixel
4x digital zoom, AF, dual-LED flash,
Cellular radio "3G and 4G variants"
WiFi 802.11b/g/n
Bluetooth 2.1 + EDR
Gyroscope Yes
Accelerometer Yes
Battery capacity 6,300 mAh
Weight 740g

Pros: True multi-tasking, ....
Cons: Single MFR, .....

MICROSOFT WINDOWS OS
-Tens of MFR's.
-Hundreds of devices available currently.
-Been around the block and failed many times.


HP's Touchsmart Devices
Lengthy review/discussion HERE


Pros: Very configurable hardware options, very configurable software options, full operating system, hard and soft keyboard, several input/output connections, available with capacitive touch screen, reasonable cost when compared to similar laptops
Cons: Fairly expensive when compared to limited functionality tablets, limited battery life, heavy/thick physical size

Archos 9 Tablet


Pros: Full operating system, large screen, lots of input/output options
Cons: inferior hardware specs, funky mouse/left and right click interface, heavy


GOOGLE ANDROID OS
-Tens of hardware MFR's.
-New to the scene.


Augen GenTouch Tablet


Pros: CHEAP, Bare Android OS, memory expansion
Cons: battery life?, resistive touchscreen, processing power, small screen

Samsung Galaxy Tab


Pros: Good HW specs, Super AMOLED screen, updated Android OS
Cons: Skinned interface for Android, small screen

Archos 5 Tablet/Archos 7 Tablet


Pros: Android OS, lower cost
Cons: Old Android version, lower spec'd hardware, lackluster MFR support, small screen

Dell Streak


Pros: Android OS
Cons: small screen


RIM BLACKBERRY OS
-Single hardware MFR.
-New to the scene.
-Not released yet. (8/2/10)


RIM Playbook


7-inch LCD, 1024 x 600, WSVGA, capacitive touch screen with full multi-touch and gesture support
BlackBerry Tablet OS with support for symmetric multiprocessing
1 GHz dual-core processor
1 GB RAM
Dual HD cameras (3 MP front facing, 5 MP rear facing), supports 1080p HD video recording
Video playback: 1080p HD Video, H.264, MPEG, DivX, WMV
Audio playback: MP3, AAC, WMA
HDMI video output
Wi-Fi - 802.11 a/b/g/n
Bluetooth 2.1 + EDR
Connectors: microHDMI, microUSB, charging contacts
Open, flexible application platform with support for WebKit/HTML-5, Adobe Flash Player 10.1, Adobe Mobile AIR, Adobe Reader, POSIX, OpenGL, Java
Ultra thin and portable:
Measures 5.1"x7.6"x0.4" (130mm x 193mm x 10mm)
Weighs less than a pound (approximately 0.9 lb or 400g)
RIM intends to also offer 3G and 4G models in the future.

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Last edited by greg_mitch on Fri Feb 11, 2011 5:14 am; edited 2 times in total
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greg_mitch



Joined: 03 May 2006
Posts: 5321



PostLink    Posted: Tue Aug 03, 2010 1:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Here is something different! Turn your cheap netbook into a touchscreen netbook for $85!!

Kit here: http://www.mydigitaldiscount.com/ProductDetail.jsp?LISTID=80000B67-1248971986


Youtube directions start here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m27hdEeT9DA

I am intrigued!

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Spanky Ham



Joined: 22 Mar 2006
Posts: 5634
Location: Comedy Central


PostLink    Posted: Tue Aug 03, 2010 3:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The more I think about it the more I think the inexpensive Linux/Android pads could have a bright future. I was planning on giving my mother my old laptop, but I think I am going to give her an Android pad. I think my father would probably prefer one of these things as well. As Crabb has mentioned, the convenience of sitting on the couch and checking email, surfing the net, etc. is a perfect use for these devices.
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greg_mitch



Joined: 03 May 2006
Posts: 5321



PostLink    Posted: Tue Aug 03, 2010 3:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Spanky Ham wrote:
The more I think about it the more I think the inexpensive Linux/Android pads could have a bright future. I was planning on giving my mother my old laptop, but I think I am going to give her an Android pad. I think my father would probably prefer one of these things as well. As Crabb has mentioned, the convenience of sitting on the couch and checking email, surfing the net, etc. is a perfect use for these devices.


Check out Augen's smartbook also...$99! Pretty dismal performance but as a single tasker...think internet browser only without videos...wouldn't be bad.

http://www.engadget.com/2010/07/27/augens-99-genbook-smartbook-preview/1

Would be good for the elderly population if the damn keyboard wasn't so small!

I wonder if you can take a $99 smartbook and put it in a gigantic case (think huge remote)?

This:



Plus


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VideoGrabber



Joined: 09 Apr 2006
Posts: 933
Location: Michigan


PostLink    Posted: Tue Aug 03, 2010 3:30 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Greg,

the TouchSmart tablet you grabbed a picture of is the old (more than a year) TX2 series. These basically sucked, because they ran hot, noisy, and sucked the battery dry pretty fast. I talked to some trying to sell theirs on eBay, and most were down to 1.5-2.5 hours on a charge. This was a result of using a combination of power hungry chips... AMD CPU and NVidia GPUs. They were also very "plasticy".

The current TM2 series looks quite different. It runs very cool and quiet (almost silent), and gets good to very good battery life, depending on what options you load it up with. They do this with CULV (ultralow voltage) Intel Core2 Duo chips sucking less than 10W, and Intel MobileHD GPUs. At one end (which I chose) you can get a real 9 hours on a charge if needed, or a solid 7-8 if you're not trying to economize. Others opt for the faster CPUs, and add the optional RadeonHD GPUs for better 3D and gaming performance. That can cut battery life in half.

I spend most of my time in portrait mode... [img]http://common.ziffdavisinternet.com/util_get_image/21/0,1425,i=218405&sz=1,00.jpg[/img] though showing it with an empty screen isn't all that informative. For some reason, most show it in the laptop configuration [img]http://common.ziffdavisinternet.com/util_get_image/21/0,1425,i=218400&sz=1,00.jpg[/img] which doesn't make much sense to me.

One good thing in my book is that the stock battery is a 5240 mAH 6-cell unit. 3rd party manufs have compatible 12-cell batteries for other HP machines, with 8800 mAH, and I'd like to see one with the plastic shell that would allow it to be plugged into the TM2 (size, dimensions, weight, voltage, etc. are all compatible... just not the keying on the plastic shells). That could give up to 15 hours on a charge, or 9 if you were totally abusive.

They're both bigger and heavier than 'real tablets' because they're convertibles. I.e., the screen swivels to turn it back into a laptop, with full keyboard and multi-touch control pad. I haven't decided whether that's of any value to me yet, since in 2 weeks I've used it exclusively in tablet mode. But if you're doing something where you really need a keyboard, you always have one available. That mode would be limited to home use, for me, and there I'd just prefer to use a separate wireless/bluetooth keyboard and mouse.

One kind of cool thing about my TM2 is that I can get back to that full 9-hour charge again after running it completely down (to 5%, where it auto-hibers), with only a 2-hour session on the charger! So if you're in a hurry and on the go, that could be a really good thing.

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Last edited by VideoGrabber on Tue Aug 03, 2010 3:33 am; edited 2 times in total
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VideoGrabber



Joined: 09 Apr 2006
Posts: 933
Location: Michigan


PostLink    Posted: Tue Aug 03, 2010 3:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Could someone tell me why my IMG tags above aren't working? Thanks.
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huggy



Joined: 02 Aug 2008
Posts: 927
Location: Melbourne,Australia


PostLink    Posted: Tue Aug 03, 2010 4:30 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Great timing! Very Happy

I've been looking at getting a tablet p.c to accompany me on long haul flights (20 hours plus) to read books watch movies and some gaming.
I need something cheap I can easily load movies/docco's etc from my p.c.
The android tablet looks good but will have to research when available in Oz.



Dave
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huggy



Joined: 02 Aug 2008
Posts: 927
Location: Melbourne,Australia


PostLink    Posted: Tue Aug 03, 2010 4:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Has anyone seen/used or heard any feedback on the chinese Ipad knockoff with the Android operating system? Very Happy

Epad

http://cgi.ebay.com.au/ePad-10-Google-Android-2-1-1GHz-CPU-WiFi-MID-Tablet-PC-/280541416372?cmd=ViewItem&pt=AU_comp_laptop&hash=item4151924bb4


Apad

http://cgi.ebay.com.au/10-2-TABLET-PC-UMPC-APAD-NETBOOK-ANDROID-2-1-1ghz-cpu-/250673201240?cmd=ViewItem&pt=AU_comp_laptop&hash=item3a5d498058


These are the only ones in my budget Mr. Green



Dave
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WanMan



Joined: 19 Mar 2006
Posts: 10261



PostLink    Posted: Tue Aug 03, 2010 12:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm waiting on the WePad to come out. While I am interested in a mobile data connectivity feature, I am not as inclined to mandate that need to being held hostage by a cellular carrier or an application store (both would act as middle-men).

BTW, the Blackberry offering is called the BLACKpad. I can't wait for some judge to demand "why not a WHITEpad." Mr. Green



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greg_mitch



Joined: 03 May 2006
Posts: 5321



PostLink    Posted: Tue Aug 03, 2010 1:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I thought the Wepad was vaporware...but we will see. The Blackpad is listed above. Did you see any information on it? All I heard was that Blackberry loyalty was dropping like a rock with 50% of the users anticipating to move to iPhone or Android. Doesn't bode well for the Blackpad. Personally I see Blackberry like Palm (although blackberry was wildly more successful than Palm). They are sole source...loyalty based. They are toast in the long haul.

Huggy - I would recommend against a chinese knockoff but if you try one let us know what you think!

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WanMan



Joined: 19 Mar 2006
Posts: 10261



PostLink    Posted: Sat Aug 14, 2010 11:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

How about Notion Ink's Adam?


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WanMan



Joined: 19 Mar 2006
Posts: 10261



PostLink    Posted: Sat Aug 14, 2010 12:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

greg_mitch wrote:
I thought the Wepad was vaporware...but we will see. The Blackpad is listed above. Did you see any information on it? All I heard was that Blackberry loyalty was dropping like a rock with 50% of the users anticipating to move to iPhone or Android. Doesn't bode well for the Blackpad. Personally I see Blackberry like Palm (although blackberry was wildly more successful than Palm). They are sole source...loyalty based. They are toast in the long haul.

Huggy - I would recommend against a chinese knockoff but if you try one let us know what you think!

Well, it got renamed to WeTab with a release date this month.

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greg_mitch



Joined: 03 May 2006
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PostLink    Posted: Sat Aug 14, 2010 2:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes the Notion Ink device keeps getting delayed but they finally priced it at $398 so that is good news.

I feel like we have been on the "verge of an Android flood" for at least 6 months. Let's get it moving already!

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WanMan



Joined: 19 Mar 2006
Posts: 10261



PostLink    Posted: Sat Aug 14, 2010 5:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I know what you mean. Everyone is coming up with lab gear, beta gear, and in retail there is no gear. Personally, I am not sure I understand the need for Android vs. something like Ubuntu or even ChormeOS instead of an uber-skinny OS like Android or an overblown OS like W7. Its like they are all gearing for one end of the computing spectrum or the other.
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VideoGrabber



Joined: 09 Apr 2006
Posts: 933
Location: Michigan


PostLink    Posted: Sun Aug 15, 2010 5:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

> Yes the Notion Ink device keeps getting delayed but they finally priced it at $398 so that is good news. <

I suppose so. Though I find the extreme enthusiasm for the Adam a bit puzzling. Strong points were: an excellent screen (that worked in both backlit and ambient-lit modes), long battery life, and cheap. Along with the half-year delays (this _may_ hit by xmas, but is more likely to be next year, given the way the FCC is being bombarded), the price has gone up substantially from the initial $300/321 they were touting. That $398 you mention is the (currently-projected) minimum price, with a non-Qi display screen. With the screen that everyone wants, the minimum is $450.

From what I'm reading though, the battery life (due to the Tegra2 and Qi display) should be exceptional (up to 160 hours for reading, and 20 hours for movie watching). The screen in particular pulls only 0.2W with the backlight off. However, unless you're in very bright light (direct sunlight), it will essentially be a gray-scale presentation in that mode.

They're not revealing the UI layer they plan to use on top of Android (they claim they're waiting on patents), but from the design sketches I've seen, it looks like they've put a lot of thought into what would make a tabletPC work well. They're also being coy about their mechanism for controlling multitasking Apps, but in that case there's not much mystery... there's really only one way you can have extended control & navigation functions in a touch-screen environment, and that is by expanding the set of "symbols" (touch gestures) the unit recognizes. So I expect to see them patenting the use of the alphabet. Wink (I have no inside information on this... it's just speculation on my part.)

One thing about the secret UI I do expect to see is use of a large virtual-screen metaphor... where you can have many windows open and slide the smaller view-window over them. The WePad/WeTab already uses something like this in the vertical axis, with an overview window on the side. I hope this isn't the part they're trying to patent though, because it's been used in research systems for well over 20 years.

I'm really disappointed that most of the upcoming tablets will be 1024x600, because in portrait mode, 600 wide isn't enough for really good rendering of PDFs. But that's just me. The iPad is 768 wide, and I'd consider that about the minimum (though I'd prefer 960... and someday I expect to see a 1280x960 iPad). My TM2 tablet is 800 wide, which after rendering a full page in a proper aspect ratio, leaves a 200-pixel high band (at the top or bottom, out of the total 1280) that can be used for on-screen buttons or status-type information.

There's no extra room on the 1024x768 iPad screen borders for ancillary info/controls, when viewing PDFS, and that's not necessarily a bad thing, since it contributes to an uncluttered interface. Though I did find it somewhat tedious at times in GoodReader to bring up/put away the menu bar to get at the controls. The killer there being a) impossible, even in landscape mode, to view 2 PDFs at the same time; and b) very slow (and clumsy) to switch back and forth between viewing 2 alternate documents. Neither of which is an issue on the TM2.

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greg_mitch



Joined: 03 May 2006
Posts: 5321



PostLink    Posted: Fri Aug 27, 2010 8:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well a video was released for the new Samsung Galaxy Tab -

http://www.engadget.com/2010/08/26/samsung-galaxy-tab-gets-video-preview-in-korea/

Here is a picture comparing the new Samsung Galaxy S Phone to the Galaxy Tab to the iPad.



The jury is still out in my mind if 7" is the right size.

I found it pretty cumbersome to hold the iPad with one hand and try to navigate and type with the other, although it is very light, I felt like it would tip over when it was resting on my palm and I didn't like holding it from the side.

5" is too small for everyday browsing...7" might be ok...let's see. Coming out next month!

Speaking of 5" tablets...

Archos 5 Android Tablet 60GB refurbed for sale at Newegg for $150. Not a new version of Android or even the greatest reviews but the price is right.

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greg_mitch



Joined: 03 May 2006
Posts: 5321



PostLink    Posted: Sat Aug 28, 2010 2:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Geeze...could September get here already!!!

This looks promising:

StreamTV Elocity A7


$399 seems to be a pretty good price based on the hardware included!

Brief review here:
http://www.engadget.com/2010/08/28/streamtv-elocity-a7-tablet-packs-tegra-2-and-android-2-2-coming/

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WanMan



Joined: 19 Mar 2006
Posts: 10261



PostLink    Posted: Sat Aug 28, 2010 7:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Want something more tablet size and less Palm Pilot size. I am not a pygmy and neither are my fingers. Smile
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greg_mitch



Joined: 03 May 2006
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PostLink    Posted: Sat Aug 28, 2010 7:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

This should be more to your liking...10.1" screen!

The price will likely follow the size up and up and up.



It will be nice to finally start seeing these Tegra powered devices in the wild!

SC - you can enjoy the comment section in the full preview article at engadget here:
http://www.engadget.com/2010/08/28/toshibas-tegra-2-powered-android-smart-pad-to-be-called-folio-1/

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greg_mitch



Joined: 03 May 2006
Posts: 5321



PostLink    Posted: Tue Aug 31, 2010 1:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hannspree jumps into the crowd:



Great spec sheet...let's see if they can deliver.

I hear Android 3.0 will be for tablets and the lower Android ROMs will be for phones. Don't know how that plays out but might want to stick with <$200 Android tablets just in case it isn't upgradeable to the new release of Android or at least until Google releases their plans for tabs.

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