This year has seen an explosion in the Tablet world, and while that’s awesome for the technophile, the average consumers and the technophobes are probably confused! So, what do you buy? I can’t tell you that, but I’ll try and tell you what’s out there (in India, as of this date of course).
So here’s what this post is about:
- A list of what’s available as of now
- How much it (probably Costs)
- What’s good about it
Here’s what it’s NOT about:
- What to buy
First up, and this one is THE big one. Obviously, I’m talking about the:
Well, more specifically, I’m talking about the iPad 2 here. The second coming of the tablet that stormed the world, and literally SET UP the tablet market (you can argue all you want, but if it wasn’t for the iPad, no one would have bought tablets).
For a change, Apple decided the launch the iPad 2 way ahead of their usual “a year after the rest of the world”. You can look it up over the Apple Page.
You get it in 2 main variations; WiFi only or WiFi + 3G, with 16, 32 or 64 GB of storage. What you get is a 1GHz dual core Apple A5 processor, a 9.7″, 1024X768 Multitouch LCD with IPS (in plane switching).You also have a camera round the back that shoots 720p video, and a VGA front facing camera. And of course, access to the App Store, which now has over 100000 apps specifically tailored for the iPad. And brilliant battery life.
Prices start at INR 29,500 for the 16GB WiFi only model, going up to 46,900 for the 64GB WiFi+3G model.
Now onto what Steve Jobs called the copycats. Let’s start with the tablet that brought Honeycomb out.
The Xoom brought Honeycomb (Android 3.0), the Android Version built specifically for tablets with it. And it completely failed to inpress back then. Right now, it comes with Android 3.1, which promises performance and battery life improvements.
So what do you get? A 1GHz Dual Core NVidia Tegra 2 Processor, 1 GB DDR2 RAM, a 10.1″ 1280×800 LCD Display, a 5MP Rear camera that shoots 720p videos, a 2MP Front cam, Flash Support and your usual connectivity options. You can find more specs on the Motorola Product Page.
I haven’t had the chance to play with this, but from all reports, it’s quite bulky. Flipkart lists this at INR 38,990 for the 32GB WiFi+3G version, which is the only one available here.
The Honeycomb Tablet that currently might just be worth buying (at least until the Galaxy Tab 10.1 and 8.9 come out) seems to be the A500. Similar specs as the Motorola Xoom, except it’s MUCH thinner. It comes with 16GB inbuilt, and you can expand that through a Micro-SD card. The WiFi+3G model is around INR 27,900.
More specs over at the Acer Product Page.
If windows is more your kinda thing, Acer has you covered there too.
Now, a little different here. The Iconia Tab W500, runs on Windows 7 Home Premium, has a 10.1″ 1280X800 Multitouch Capacitive LCD Screen, has a Dual Core AMD Fusion C-50 Processor and the AMD Radeon HD 6250 GPU, 2GB DDR3 RAM, 1.3MP Cameras Front & Back, Ethernet Port, USB Ports, has an optional Keyboard Dock, and the Acer RING interface to get you around Windows 7 on a touch device. Check it out over at the Acer Product Page.
It’s available for around INR 32,000.
Different again, it’s the;
The Playbook by RIM is something truly differnet. It’s something you should get if you already have a Blackberry. It Runs QNX, has a [email protected] 1024×600 LCD display, a 1GHz Dual Core Processor with 1GB RAM, and offers flash support. Multitasking on the playbook was pretty awesome. It’s almost like WebOS. Although, if you don’t have a Blackberry (which you use with the Playbook using the Bridge Feature), do keep in mind that there is NO email or calendar app at the moment. It should come with a future update, but until then, you need to use the browser. Which is quite good.
More Mundane Choices?
Launched a while back, the Galaxy Tab 7 runs a 1GHz CPU, has a 7″ 1024×600 display, has a 3MP camera at the back that can shoot 720p video, 1.3MP camera up front, and runs Android 2.2 (Froyo). It should get Gingerbread (2.3) sometime soon, so keep your fingers crossed. You can use this as an oversized phone, although it doesn’t have a speaker grill for voice, so you need a wired or a bluetooth headset. It should be available for around INR 22,000 now.
Read more about it over at the Samsung Product Page.
Finally, there’s another 7″tablet to look at;
While the Flyer isn’t a Honeycomb Tablet (it runs Gingerbread aka Android 2.3.3), it does offer something unique. First up, the specs. It has a 1.5GHz Single Core CPU from Qualcomm, 1GB Ram, 32GB internal memory, expandable via Micro-SD cards, a 7″ 1024×600 LCD Screen, a 5MP camera at the back and a 1.3MP camera up front. The unique bit is part hardware, part software. It uses a Scribe Pen to pretty much do anything on the tablet. You can scribble, add footnotes, highlight text, write notes, etc. That’s quite neat! The 32GB WiFi+3G model should cost around INR 38,900.
Check out the HTC Product Page for more details. And check out the video below for more info on what it’s all about.
Now a tablet that you should definitely look into, because it’s INDIAN! Talking about the;
Notion Ink is a new entrant into the Tablet Industry, but it is a company that was formed to do just this. They’ve created a huge buzz, including being featured on Techcrunch (1)(2). What you get, apart from the design itself which is quite unique, is a NVIDIA Tegra 250 Dual Core Processor, 10.1″ 1024×600 Display, 1GB DDR2 RAM, 1GB SLC, 8 GB Flash Storage expandable by Micro-SD, a 3.2MP auto-focus Swivel Camera, WiFi, Bluetooth and 3G radios, HDMI out, and USB 2.0 Host Connectivity. It also has the Eden Interface, which is sort of a panel based system with easy access to multiple panels with widgets and shortcuts. Check out the Eden interface in the video below. Oh yeah, did I forget to mention that it’s an Indian outfit, based out of Bangalore? You can order your Adam HERE.PS: I might have lied a little about the what to buy bit.