back to article Apple iPad vs... the rest

2010: it's a wrap There's no doubt about it, Apple's iPad was the defining product of 2010. No other offering came out of nowhere not only to establish a new category of kit, but to kick an existing one - the netbook - up the proverbial and, into the bargain, scupper another - the smartbook - before it had even established …


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  1. jamie 5

    Galaxy Tab

    I have a Samsung Galaxy Tab, and it feels like a poor cousin to an iPad.

    Comparing the display in terms of the screen diagonal is misleading. What you should say is that the Tab's screen is *half* the size of the iPad's, but it's still too big to carry around in your pocket. So you have all the limitations of a bulky device, but with a screen that doesn't justify it.

    The graphics are not as smooth as the iPad, despite having a similar spec processor.

    Most annoying feature is the screen rotation detection, which forces you to either: Hold the dvice with all the care of a safe-cracker, lest your hand shake and the screen clunkily re-draws into landscape, you over correct and throw it back the wrong way, repeat; - or - lock it permanently. (Biggest bug bear here, you can't lock the screen in Landscape from the web browser, because it hides the menu bar. You have to quit browsing, go back to the main menu, lock the screen, and then go back. Argh)

    The camera may well be a boasted 3MP unit, but there's no zoom and the focus is poor. The less said about the front facing camera, the better, it produces super grainy images with the screen rotation not recorded in the JPEG. The automatic panorama mode is a neat feature, until you find that the images are only 800x600, which makes them pretty much unusable for anything. (The Tab offers no way to showcase them, any at event). Video calling *is* supported, but only with Samsung proprietary platform. There's no standard 3G video calling support. (Which the Reg slammed Apple for, but remained totally silent about on this device. Double standards anyone?)

    So you can only call someone else who also has a Galaxy Tab. With them.

    Like the iPad, the device will only charge from the supplied charger. Regular USB doesn't pump out enough juice to charge it otherwise. Unlike the iPad, it doesn't use the same cable that all your friends and colleagues already have for there iPhone/iPod/iPads. Lose Samsung's supplied copycat cable, and you have to buy another. (From where, I have no idea).

    Somehow the headphones are also proprietary, try to use a (de-facto) standard iPhone headset, and it'll shut off the mic on the device, but not use the one on your 'phones, so you're leaft shouting to no one. The only other option is having the device on loud-speaker and shouting at it Dom Jolly style.

    Things I won't even start on, in case I explode. Flash support (ahahahahahahaha, enable at your peril), Swype (note: learning my typing style != remembering every single typo I ever made and substituting real words with them /every/ time). The android marketplace (or beta-shop, as it should be called. I *like* apple weeding out the crappy, unfinished dross, thanks)

    Good points, and there are some. it's sturdy. even though it's plastic it feels quality, and mine has taken a few knocks well. The battery is excellent, will easily go all day. The extra screen space really makes some apps come alive.

    The Mobile AP support in android 2.2 is excellent, and has helped me out several times already. Email works well (though no push), but the supplied MS Word reader is piss poor, Google Docs and Documents-to-go do a much better job.

    I'm looking forward to 2.3 and I hope many of the niggling features can be ironed out.

    So, in conclusion, it's 1/2 the size of an iPad; doesn't work quite as well, still needs a bag to be carried in, doesn't do video calling and costs the same.

    I got one free* with my mobile contract though, so I'll see where it goes.

    1. flameresistant

      How Refreshing ...

      ... to read informed comment from someone who can make an objective comparison.

      Thanks jamie 5.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      De-facto headphones?

      Apple? De-facto? Since when? You'll probably find any other manufacturers headphones work OK, only Apple ones that don't, as their wiring is different for the segments... as for not being able to use an iPod connector, come on, how long would it take Apple's lawyers to seize on that one?

      Push email does work on Android, depends on the mail system though.

      Still can't see the use any type of tablet, phone for portable, laptop for home. Something too big to fit in my jeans pocket comes under the category of non-portable.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Thumb Up


      now know what to be looking for now.

      seen both in shop, but can't beat a "real use" review

  2. davidjspooner

    Can somebody please explain...

    a) why for a 7 inch device that can be held in the pocket why the bezel has to be so wide? I don't need a bezel that big on my mobile phone, why do i need it on my 7 inch tablet? If it wasn't for that bezel that thing might fit in a jacket pocket....

    b) why put stereo speakers on only one edge of a device that can be held in both portrait and landscape or even upside down? Isn't it obvious to put a speaker at each of the 4 corners and get the os to rotate the stereo to match when the screen is rotated?

    1. DZ-Jay


      I suppose the large bezel is

      1. To look like the iPad.

      2. To allow for holding it with your fingers instead of palming it in your hand like you do with a phone.


  3. SuperTim


    Having recently acquired an iPad for nowt (by fair means, not foul) I was wondering whether it would actually live up to the hype. I was wondering if it would replace my laptop, i was wondering if it would be the new form factor to wow the masses.

    It isn't.

    It just doesn't do anything as well as the other devices i have. My laptop is a hundred times more flexible. My smart phone is more mobile, if i had an ebook reader and time to read books, it would be better (and have a longer battery life). I have not been able to figure what use this thing is and as a result, after a week of use it has started to be left next to the bed charging. I do think there is one area where i suspect it would come in very handy indeed.


    It seems that this little device is very portable indeed, and has web and email, Music, entertainment and the ability to get new apps very easily. I think that it would be a definite for when i go away and saves me lugging about a fairly large laptop which doesn't need its flexibility when i am just wanting a way to stay online while away from home.

    Would i pay £600 for the iPad i have?


    I would be gutted if i had shelled out that much just to find that it doesn't do very much more than my phone does (and less in some areas). As I see it, it is an iPod touch for those with restricted eyesight.

    1. Wibble

      Don't think you've really 'got it'

      The iPad isn't a replacement for your laptops.

      It is a great device for certain things which beats a laptop hands down. For example, lightweight browsing is great in portrait mode. I wouldn't use it for research, but a general poke around the web is fine.

      It's instant on with no effort, meaning that I think "I need to look that up", I grab it, it's instantly on, I look up the thing I wanted to know about. Compare that with a lappie; it's got to be opened, switched on (fast on a Mac, less so for windwos), placed on your lap (it's got limited places where it'll work), fire up the browser, search. For me, the iPad is just a lot easier for casual use.

      It's form factor is massively better than a lappie in certain circumstances. On a train/plane/automobile. Standing up. Portrait mode is much better for reading. Laying on ones side whilst reading in bed. Landscape mode for more detail, typing and films. Lappies don't have orientation choice.

      An iPad is rubbish at doing multi-tasking 'work' things such as taking notes whilst reading a document (it's single-tasking user interface won't allow that). It's rubbish for long typing sessions, although it's fine for email, etc. The limited functionality of the browser means you're not going to use it to develop websites, not view sources. The 'odd' layout of the keyboard gets on one's tit - lack of tab or cursor keys for editing.

      I paid £730 for mine and am delighted with it being a great device to AUGMENT my large 17" lappie, particularly when commuting, watching the telly, reading in bed, etc. It ISN'T A REPLACEMENT for a lappie. This is probably where people who 'don't get it' go wrong.

      The fact it was given to you means it has little value to you. Why not give it away to someone who would value it, or even drop it into a charity shop.

      1. SuperTim

        give away...

        I did give it the wife, who always wanted one. She doesn't use it much either. I understand it isn't a replacement, and i also understand that it is better for the quick browse fix, but my argument is that for £600 it really isn't worth it or a massive leap forward.

        And for the record.... Laptops DO have orientation choice. At least mine does, though it does need a keyboard shortcut to rotate it.

        I think my points are valid, but i take yours. I just object to the ludicrous price for what is a big ipod.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: give away...

          "I think my points are valid, but i take yours. I just object to the ludicrous price for what is a big ipod."

          Remember that everyone paying for that iLifestyle ("I've so seen the light that I can now only refer to laptops as lappies, although maybe I did that before!") is "invested" (and, indeed, has invested) in not seeing the iPad as a big iPod Touch, even though common sense would indicate this to largely be the case.

          Of course, Apple is great at getting people to pay a premium for just a bit more. And then having those people defend their purchase in the face of a more objective evaluation such as your own.

        2. Rob Moir

          I just object to the ludicrous price for what is a big ipod.

          For a price that's supposed to be so expensive, it's funny how few people actually beat it with a device that has comparable specs.

          1. Mark 65

            @Rob Moir

            I don't think people are necessarily saying it's too expensive from a cost of components aspect, although there is a site that lists the profit over pure component costs that shows some good margins for a non-discounted device, but rather that it's expensive for what it does. Drop the 16GB wi-fi to 329 from 429 and we could be talking, especially if you can tether to an iphone for mobile web. It's not massively overpriced but it does make you wince first time you consider it.

        3. Arctic fox

          @Super Tim. Re "give away"

          "I just object to the ludicrous price for what is a big ipod."

          I agree. That indeed is my main beef with the iPad, the price is a liberty. I note also that we see certain enthusiasts (note how polite I am - haven't said a word about f'* b''s. -:)) defend the Apple-premium by referring to what Samsung are asking for the Tab. Of course Samsung are trying to get the same sort of money for the Tab as Apple are getting for the Pad as long as they think that they can get away with it, any manufacturer would if they thought they could. That does not however IMO mean that it is remotely sensible spending that kind of dosh on such products this early in the development of the pad-segment. There are several medium-high to high-end manufacturers lining up to release kit in 2011 with specs that will make both the Pad and the Tab look ordinary with regard to functionality etc and with so many heavy hitters in the market the prices will begin to fall - big time. Anybody who has bought either of those two products in 2010 has paid a very high price for being an "early adopter". I am looking at getting a tablet of some kind towards the back end of the coming year and I confidently predict that a large choice of kit *at least* as good as the two aforementioned or better will be available and at lower prices.

      2. JEDIDIAH

        Yet something else to lug around.

        > The iPad isn't a replacement for your laptops.

        Then why bother? The thing is huge. There are some laptops that take up less space. Such laptops have been commonplace long before there was the artificially defined notion of a "netbook"..

        I am sure there are plenty of Apple fanboys that wish they had waited for the Apple netbook.

        If a tablet can't completely replace your netbook, then it just becomes another bit of bulky gear that you have do drag around with you. The larger the tablet, the more of a bother. An iPad is just large enough to be a bother. 7" and smaller tablets and smart phones are better in this respect.

  4. David Hicks
    Thumb Down

    Perhaps the smartbook could have worked

    If, instead of showing them off at CES and the like for several years in a row, one or two were actually released.

    Yes, I know there's the Toshiba AC100 now, but it's too little and too late, they should have been out in '09 when the manufacturers were proudly showing them off.

    As for the iPad - is it the only 9-inch tablet so far?

    The others seem small by comparison.

  5. .stu

    Advent Vega?

    I got one of these for less than £200, and with the modaco custom rom and launcher pro it's bloody great! Loading the custom rom was no more work than loading an official firmware before anyone starts... ;)

    My old man had a go on it the other day and tried to walk out the oddor with it hidden in his jacket. He was considering an ipad to read the times online instead of getting the paper delivered each morning, until he saw the price of the things that is. The Vega works fine for him, so I expect he'll be getting one fairly soon.

    1. whats the point of kenny lynch?
      Thumb Up

      me too

      In fact i'm using it to type's great - not perfect but for £249 from pcworld, i cannot complain. And I'm a mac fan but the ipad is definately over priced.

      Well impressed.

  6. parv

    size difference

    is a 7 inch an ipod touch equivalent or a tablet device. Steve Jobs said he would not introduce a 7inch tablet but he did not say he would not introduce a 7inch ipod touch. At some point size changes the nature of the device. Just like the internet became interesting when a certain number of people started connecting.

  7. Duncan Hothersall

    Thickness & weight

    I use a Galaxy Tab day to day but recently had it and an iPad together for a few days on a trip, and while the unfamiliarity of the iPad meant I only used it for the presentations I had to do, so I can't honestly compare usability, your comment about the weight and thickness really surprised me. I would have sworn blind that the iPad was thinner and lighter than the Tab. Just goes to show how effective the design of the iPad is.

    I've grown very fond of the Tab though, and wouldn't swap it. 7in is the right size for me.

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    Walled gardens

    A fair assessment of apple's walled garden IMO. It's really not the huge deal breaker for Joe Public that droidbois make it out to be. And one advantage of a huge app Market is there's now very little you can't do - I can now use mine as a direct netbook replacement, and haven't had to sync with iTunes in weeks.

    And when you're as ugly as I am, the lack of camera is actually a benefit.

    Cue "but...but...but!" style responses from said bois...

    However, there is one point of concern - on my particular device, I get horrendous static feedback on skype calls if you run your hand down the case mid-call. That's not a good sign.

    1. M Gale


      If the iPad was an actual tablet computer, I'd be tempted myself. I remember when the first rumours of an Apple tablet started, and I thought "Mmm.. tablet. OS X. Partition it with Ubuntu, get a bluetooth keyboard, this could be my first real, live, actual fruit machine!"

      Instead it's a bloody big, expensive, iPod.

      So no, I do not consider this device (nor the various droid tablets, yet) to be anything other than toys. You have fun with yours, but I'm not willing to shell out that much on something that limited. Spending all night (literally, from about 7pm to Midnight) trying to get an iPad Mini^W^WiPod Touch 4 working because first iTunes needs updating, then the owner didn't want to put a debit card into iTunes before giving it to an 8 year old as a Christmas present? Yeah, right.

      Oh, don't ever be honest with the age if you're giving it to a kid as a present. Not only will Apple ban you from creating an account, but they'll ban that email address AND your copy of iTunes from attempting to create another account for the next 24 hours. Cue some interesting hackish workarounds and some interesting choices of epithets being thrown in Steve Jobs' direction.

      Apple: It Just Works. Hahahahaha...

      1. Michael C

        Juast because

        its a niche market, not a major market, and because YOU have no intent of spending $400-700 on a companion device has no impact on the fact than several MILLION people did actually consider that a good deal, and found use cases for the device that met its value.

        Arguing that because you won;t buy it, or you don;t see the value proposition has no impact on the very real fact that others do, enough to make the product and for it to be massively popular and successful. Should BMW stop making cars just because average Joe will never buy one?

        1. M Gale

          BMW? Ah, the toy car manufacturer.

          I have a friend who rather likes his BMWs. He's not rich, so he tends to get second hand ones. His every-day car is a 315i, and he's just gotten himself an old M5.

          Three litres. Rear wheel drive, like all good BMWs.

          Do you know that no car with a BMW badge on it will ever be anything other than rear wheel drive, or four wheel drive, and that BMW are proud of that? The Mini doesn't have a BMW badge on it, by the way.

          You know what he likes to do most in his BMW? Yep, he likes to drive sideways - and he's good at it, too. Remember those BMW adverts that profess to put the "joy" into driving? The ones that show that car driving around an ice rink? Film directors should hire this guy as a stunt driver, he's that good.

          BMW. Nice toy, but you don't buy one for its fuel economy, boot space or "productivity". One would think that for the latter, you'd buy a van. Maybe Mercedes-Benz, maybe Ford.

          Really, really bad example you gave me there. Besides, second-hand BMWs don't stop working on modern roads just because the manufacturer has decided to not give you firmware updates any more.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Thumb Down

            The thing is...

            Apple's support for their products is actually rather good, especially their phones. for instance a 2.5 year old iPhone is still supported and will continue to be supported until next summer, after 3 years. I've *never* had a phone that has been supported that long and it really should be applauded. I expect Apple to support the current iPad for about as long. How many times have we seen people complaining on these very message boards that their particular Android device hasn't had an update released? Sure, one can 'root' it or install a different mod if you know what you are doing or can be arsed. This is the point that you ABA's perpetually miss; it's not that majority can't do it, they just can't be arsed, and why should they? The truth is that what you accuse Apple of , many of the other businesses that people cite, normally Apple competitors, are just as bad and often worse. Yes, Apple do chase profits. Funnily enough that's what businesses do. You come across as a bit of a know-it-all and I doubt you've ever 'used' a BMW or an iPad for any length of time, if at all. That's fine, but don't expect anyone to take your views and opinions seriously, especially when they are nothing more than a veiled troll. You might want to check those BMW specs too. YAWN...

        2. StooMonster

          More common than you think

          BMW 3-series are one of the most popular cars in UK, up there with Mini, Peugeot 207, VW Golf, Vauxhalls Astra and Corsa, and Fords Focus and Fiesta.

          The average Joe buys plenty of BMW, and I think the same is true of iPad.

          As to Apple iPad, in my social circle every family and friend has one ... they kids love 'em, and they are used primarily for casual web-browsing by the adults. One of the only friends I know without one is an "anything but Apple" crusader who always says "but...but...but!" whenever he sees an iPad, and he's saying that a lot these days ... especially on Xmas present lists.

          1. M Gale

            It's still a toy.

            "As to Apple iPad, in my social circle every family and friend has one.."

            I think that says more about your social circle than the public at large.

            Really, I'd like to meet this fabled place where everyone has an iPad. The iPod? Fairly popular, not as popular as Apple would have you believe, but you do tend to see them out and about. The iPad? Not so much!

            Not as much as netbooks and laptops, anyway - and I'm going outside my own particular circle of friends here. All I can say is, you must be in the well-above-average wage bracket.

            (waiting for more downvotes...)

          2. Lickass McClippers
            Thumb Down

            RE: More common than you think

            Like arse are they. In my social circle, I've still yet to see one (outside a shop). This leads me to suspect that they aren’t as common as YOU’D think, or people are too embarrassed to admit they’ve got one ... and let’s be honest, if someone has an “i” device, they’ll tell you alllllll about it…

            1. JEDIDIAH

              Depends on your circle

     all depends on your circle.

              Although the crowds that are likely to jump on the iPad as a bit of conspicous consumption are just as likely to dump it as soon as the next thing comes along. Since there's a new trinket in town (the new Macbook Air) such people are fixating on that now and not the iPad so much.

              The "trendy" types don't stay with anything for long.

              Beyond that, you might see a few iThings here or there but it's hardly pervasive.

  9. M Gale


    "There's no doubt about it, Apple's iPad was the defining product of 2010. No other offering came out of nowhere not only to establish a new category of kit, but to kick an existing one - the netbook - up the proverbial and, into the bargain, scupper another - the smartbook - before it had even established itself in the market."

    Nowhere except in the minds of journalists and people rich enough to spend that much on a toy, has this happened.

    iPad is a fun toy, but please. Hyperbole much?

    1. Rogerborg

      What you have to remember about meejahoars is

      That they only hang out with other meejahoars and marketdroids.

      And since everyone who pours free booze down their gullets is packing a iFad and yakking on about it, they naturally assume that everyone who matters has one, and is obsessed with it. The alternative - talking to non meeja people - is just to horrifying to contemplate. Why, some of those proles might expect you to pay for your own lunch!

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      personally I see no real point to an iPad

      However, to support your assertion you have to either provide a coherent argument that the iPad is not the 2010 defining product or provide an alternative as the defining product of the year.

      Also, as a grown up, my toys tend to cost more than £600 anyway.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        @Lee: "as a grown up, my toys tend to cost more than £600 anyway."

        As a grown up with a family, _my_ toys consist of the kid's Lego and some colouring pencils. Your point is?

      2. TheRealRoland

        @Lee -- Sorry sport, couldn't help but notice that

        I'm considerably richer than you.

    3. ThomH

      Sales figures say otherwise

      As widely reported, if you (somewhat artificially, but bear with me) count the iPad as a computer then Apple jump from being America's fourth largest computer supplier with around 7% of the market to being America's largest computer supplier with around 25% of the market. Like the product or not, that would appear to be a major splash and a product that is likely to have substantially overshadowed niche parts of the computer market.

      Given that those are numerical facts and you supply no evidence whatsoever, I'm inclined to agree with El Reg's assessment.

      1. M Gale

        Re: Sales figures say otherwise.

        I'm pretty sure that if you included the Playstation as "a computer", then Sony would take a hell of a jump upward in terms of computer sales.

        It's not though, is it?

        1. ThomH

          Re: Re: Sales figures say otherwise.

          I think you've lost sight of your argument. Are you now arguing that releasing the first product that consumers notice in a particular product area and achieving Playstation-level sales immediately doesn't make that arguably a defining product of the year?

          I accept that it's more difficult to establish the iPad as a causative factor in the ongoing demise of the netbook — I'd put the blame there more on a general lack of direction within the market. El Reg originally dubbed them small, cheap computers and all you can say about them now is that they're definitely still computers.

        2. a_been

          Linux for PlayStation 2

          Linux for PlayStation 2, from Sony, turned it into a PC.

          1. Anonymous Coward

            and Sony turned it back into a console...

   removing the option to install Linux on it.

            1. M Gale

              Re: and Sony turned it back into a console...

              And this is exactly what I mean. My PC is my PC.

              If I bought an iPad (and who knows, if I somehow end up with enough money to buy a mansion, five cars, a several-thousand-pound b&o hifi, a yacht and some hired help then I might), then I know that I'm subjecting myself to Stevey-boy's dictatorial tendencies. I know that at some point in the future I may end up with functionality added, removed, and generally fucked about with on the device that I've paid good money for. All without me asking for it. I would know that my iDevice is essentially a toy, to be played with but certainly not relied upon.

              Just like a Playstation. The game is just the start? Yeah right.

              (I love the smell of downvotes in the morning.. or afternoon, as the case may be)

    4. DZ-Jay

      Re: lol?

      >> Nowhere except in the minds of journalists and people rich enough to spend that much on a toy, has this happened.

      Maybe that's why all other manufacturers stopped dead on their progress of their upcoming tablets and smartbooks announced last year, in order to try to mimic the iPad.

      Yes, I'm sure that missing the Christmas shopping season this year was part of their original plan.


      1. JEDIDIAH

        Your blinders are on too tight.

        > Maybe that's why all other manufacturers stopped dead

        > on their progress of their upcoming tablets and smartbooks

        > announced last year, in order to try to mimic the iPad.

        Archos had a similar device for sale 6 months before the iPad hysteria started.

        Sometimes I even like to refer to the iPad as the iPod 9.

        Tablets are something that everyone has been working on. Apple's variant has somewhat of an edge due to the fact that it's made with cheaper parts. Apple is very much on the "cheap and crappy" side of the market here despite all of the hype and nonsense.

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    right size

    I'm expecting Santa to deliver me a Tab this year. When it came down to it, the biggest single reason to choose it over the iPad was size. I'll use it for video, music and reading, and the iPad is just too damn big as e-reader, whereas the Tab is just right as a paperback replacement, and has a better aspect ratio for watching video. Yes, in reality its barely more portable than the iPad but it just felt less awkward than the iPad for me, and that counts for a lot. Plus, I loathe iTunes and its lack of file support in particular; it don't particularly want to have to jump through hoops just to play an avi file.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      AVI difficulty

      You mean as difficult as say... installing a free app from the Apple marketplace? Try VLC no need to convert video anymore.....

  11. DrXym

    Android will do better when it officially supports tablets

    Android works on tablets but there is no definition of what a compatible tablet device is. So every tablet, PMP etc. does things different. Some like the Galaxy Tab pretend to be giant phones. Others dump superfluous features like camera, GPS etc. and run afoul of compatibility requirements to get the marketplace app. So the market seems to be split between expensive giant phone like devices and cheap and cheerful incompatible generic devices.

    Once Honeycomb turns up I expect things will rapidly turn around for android on tablets but it's a mess at the moment.

    1. M Gale

      GPS? Superfluous?

      Well I suppose. But to be honest, of all the odds and sods you can attach to a portable computer, GPS does seem at least somewhat useful.

      1. DrXym

        I'm sure some will provide it

        The problem at the moment is Google have something called the CDD which is their compliance document. If you want the marketplace app your device must be compliant with the CDD. It says devices MUST implement GPS. And a 2+ megapixel camera. And an accelerometer. And a compass. And bluetooth etc.

        While these things make sense in phones, they don't always make sense in tablets and should be optional. If someone wants a tablet for reading books, then GPS and the other junk should be optional. Their absence makes the device cheaper and smaller.

        I am hoping that when Honeycomb turns up they revise the CDD into a bunch of profiles rather than one size fits all, e.g. core tablet profile, PMP tablet profile, ereader tablet profile, 3G profile etc.

  12. oldgit
    Thumb Down

    How about the Vega

    No mention of the Advent Vega ! For £250 plus a 30 minutes to add the mods (market and all Google apps) it is an incredible bargain. Paul O'Brien at the Modaco site has worked wonders with the basic machine plus the retailers (Dixons) are providing upgrades and support. If I sound like a fanboy it's because in this case I am.

    1. paul 97
      Thumb Up

      half the price

      At £200ish the Advent Vega a phenomenal machine even with the stock firmware although good luck getting stock - its sold out 5 times already. ( If that were apple the guardian would have a 10 page spread about the stock problem).

      Some of the apps have problems but having a better web browser than the iPad its not a bad trade off for the time being.

      Specification wise it beats the iPad ( CPU and graphics) on some things and is worse on other (the iPad screen has a better viewing angle).

      But at half the price is it therefore half as bad? No - its 90% as good as an iPad.

  13. bradbox

    Advice please

    I want to get a pad device, and the killer app is handwriting recognition. That way I can replace my paper book that I carry around everywhere.

    What's the best device to get?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Entourage eDGe

      The Entourage eDGe is a 10" pad and a 9" e-ink reader combined, i.e. two screens. You can take notes and save them as a PDF. At the moment it runs Android 1.6 but that should be updated in the new year.

  14. James Hughes 1

    Bad headline

    iPad vs...the rest.

    Well, you talked about three other tablets. There are quite a few more than that on the market - Advent, Archos to name but two. Both of which would I am more interested in hearing about that the Samsung because they are similar spec but half the price.

    So, 'the rest' doesn't really cut it. Unless this was just an iPad ad. (Not an iPad hater btw -nice piece of kit that is sadly overpriced and overly locked down)

  15. Gil Grissum

    I have a tablet. It's called an EVO 4G

    I paid $200 for my EVO 4G and I can do more with that than I can do with either an iPad or a Galaxy Tab. The Galaxy Tab doesn't look that much bigger than my EVO. Flash works great and I can actual download and view Mpeg 4 and WMV video clips. Oh, and since I have unlimited voice and data, I'm not paying for an extra data plan unlike others who have a cell and a 3G Tablet.

    Tabs are toys for the idle rich. I can do more with a large screen smart phone that costs less than half of these tablets. Less money/more value.

  16. Giles Jones Gold badge

    Alternative tablets

    The problem with alternative tablets is they just can't do everything as well.

    Thanks to the recent OS upgrade I can now plug in a USB MIDI keyboard into the iPad (via USB camera kit) and play/enter music using a real keyboard with apps that support it. Korg iMS20 is an application that has been updated to support it.

    With Android tablets this probably won't happen, too many variations in hardware and I doubt Android has a MIDI API like CoreMIDI.

    1. .stu

      why not?

      If it has happened on the iPad, why wouldn't it happen on other platforms? Once the market is big enough to make money from it, someone will do it.


      The 80s is calling.

      MIDI? Who cares really? You sound like some Atari fanboy posting from an 80s time warp.

      Besides. It's USB. This is something that is DESIGNED to be standardized. It's the key thing that gives Linux or even a Mac any hope of being able to deal with a number of devices that would be otherwise Windows only.

      "hardware variations" have nothing to do with this sort of thing.

  17. Anonymous Coward


    I find it strange that people classify the ipad as a toy because they don't have a use for it. I don't have a use for baby monitors, not having kids, so does that make them a toy? What about MRI scanners? I don't need one of those right now either, so are they toys too.

    I find my ipad to be an excellent portable typewriter; it's light, easy to use, doesn't get hot, is completely silent (even whilst typing), turns on and off instantly so I don't forget something whilst booting up, can be used in bed, lasts all day, lets me check my emails, surf the net, listen to music, read books (although it's not great at that), and even play games. All for £429, plus £6 for Pages, using my WinMo phone as a hotspot. I have a two hour bus commute several days a week and it's perfect for that. Pages even has a word count function now PcPro publicly berated its absence.

    I have an Eee netbook too, which I used for several weeks until I got fed up with the noise, the heat, the bulkiness (when carried alongside my work laptop), the minute or more it took to boot up and shut down with AV software running, and the old fashioned ergonomics. Granted the netbook could use Truecrypt and MS Office, which has some compatability advantages with my PC, but it doesn't outweigh the negatives. Not even close.

    I wouldn't use the ipad for serious document editing or page layout, just content creation, but that's the job I need it to do and it's therefore far from being a toy. The fart apps are just a bonus.

    There is of course the godawful abomination that is itunes. I just email my documents back and forth and avoid using it. If Motion Computing made their tablets for half the price, then that would see the ipad in trouble, if only because of itunes.

    1. paul 97

      how much do you type?

      I cant believe your serious. I think the reality distortion field has set in. Touchsceens in whatever form are no good for text entry of more than a hundred words.

      1. Michael C

        I do not concurr

        The fact the iPad has a full keyboard, not just a cramped virtualized system of hard to hit keys, makes typing actually quite comfortable. I don't own an iPad, but a good friend does, and I proved to myself the keyboard was easy enough to use by borrowing it and typing a days worth of NaNoWrimo content on it (about 4500 words). It was a tad slower than a physical keyboard, but once I got over habits like trying to manually capitalize the first letters of words and just let the iPad do it for me, it was fine.

        it also does support an array of keyboards, and dragon is an amazingly accurate speech recognition system.

        That said, you completely miss the point of the device. It's not for composing lengthily business replies to dozens of e-mails, its for quickly sorting through the email clutter and getting to important emails. If something is critical, you'll boot up the lappy or go find a desk, but sitting on the couch, reading a book or watching a video or perusing some sites, or using instant on to quickly check something on the front of your mind you'll forget by the time the lappy boots.

        Is it as nice as a real keyboard? hell no. If you frequently find need for one, BT keyboards can be found for $30 and fit in your pocket easy enough.

        No, the power of a companion computing device like this is you can do all the little things that would otherwise require a laptop for comfort without having to pull one out (and deal with it). My wife has a laptop, i don't (one from work only, and I don't use it for casual access). I have a gaming PC at the house. When we're traveling, I'd LOVE to have this in place of getting a full fledged laptop (and the hundreds in software licenses and hours of trouble it costs) just so i could "play" online in comfort when she's otherwise using her machine.

        Single most killer feature: instant on. Runner up, ultra-portable with a 10 hour battery. It does things netbooks and most laptops can't as well (including pretty decent quality 3DF gaming)

    2. Dan 10


      My colleague bought an iPad recently. He already had an iphone, but no other Apple stuff. On the 2nd day he said he wasn't yet convinced about the ipad, as he still wasn't sure what he was going to use it for. (God only knows how he justified the purchase in his own head) Fast forward a couple of weeks, and it goes everywhere with him. Document review sessions, meetings, notetaking, referring to standards/policy documentation; you name it, if he's away from his desk, the iPad does it quite nicely. He forgot it one day last week and was lost without it.

    3. M Gale

      It's a toy.

      It's a toy because it only does what Stevey Boy allows it to do.

      It's a toy because it's locked down like a games console.

      It's a toy because it's pretty but massively overpriced.

      It's a toy because it doesn't do half the things that a netbook costing half as much does. Like, oh, plugging an SD card into it?

      It's a toy, just like a PSP, Nintendo Wii or to be honest, most "smart" phones on the market.

      I can't believe you mention ergonomics, when you're holding a flat slate on your lap, neck craned downward, and pretending you can type properly with it. Do you know that for significantly less than an iWotsit, you can buy a netbook with an Office suite on it? You can even install Photoshop AND get half decent performance out of those tiny little Atoms. Productivity? Try using a keyboard, and not having to guess whether you're hitting the right bit of glass.

      It's not that I don't have use for one. If I won the lottery, I'd probably have an iPad specifically for flinging birds at pigs. I'm just under no illusions as to the nature of the device.

      It is a locked down, nannying, restricted and expensive toy that's less yours and more Apple's. Don't believe me? Try using one without an iTunes account, or without installing that kitchen-sink travesty of bloatware to start with. Or even better, try registering for an iTunes account without giving Apple access to your bank account in one way or another. That one took me all night, and it wouldn't surprise me if Apple soon close the hackish loophole I managed to google and find! Try getting one as a gift for a child without lying about their age when Apple asks how old you are. Try getting one without subjecting yourself to every present and potential future diktat from the Cult of Jobs.

      It. Is. A. Toy.

      Now please, downvote me some more, iTards. I relish your disapproval.

      1. flameresistant

        What a load of old tosh ...

        You are of course entitled to your own opinion but get your facts right if you want anyone to give credence to your rantings.

        "Or even better, try registering for an iTunes account without giving Apple access to your bank account in one way or another. That one took me all night, ...."

        Just because you couldn't work it out easily doesn't mean it can't be done by legitimate means. Just buy an iTunes card and redeem it.

        1. M Gale

          Activate using iTunes voucher? Not any more.

          Doesn't work.

          It used to work, but not any more.

          Seriously. Factory-reset your iToy, update iTunes, create a throwaway email account and TRY to register a new Apple ID and iTunes account without giving them a debit card. Apple don't even accept PayPal these days, and they still have yet to update their help pages (last updated in November) to match this fact!

          (while you're at it, try telling them you're 8 years old and see what happens.)

          Now, the only way of achieving the "none" payment option is hackery, arsefuckery and general buggery of the highest order. Not what I wanted to be dealing with at 11:30pm with a friend of mine getting increasingly exasperated at the £160 toy he'd just bought for an eight year old. If it wasn't for that hackery, he would have been taking it back the next day and Apple would have lost a sale. Now as you said to me, get your facts straight.

          It's okay Steve Jobs, you can thank me later.

          1. Steve Todd

            You could have course

            Googled "itunes register without credit card" and the first thing you would have found was this link to the Apple support forums: which tells you exactly how to do it

            That was REAL rocket science wasn't it?

            1. M Gale

              Re: You could have course

              "Important: Before proceeding to the next step, you must purchase a free application by clicking Free App."

              I'm pretty goddamned certain that step wasn't there when I looked through Apple's support section. I had to find it from some other unofficial help site.

              Anyway, nice to see that Apple seem to read the Reg. Not so nice that Apple "It Just Works" Computers couldn't make their iToys... just work!

          2. gurner

            @mgale... ...toy?



            Not Toy:


            What's your point?

            1. M Gale

              @gurner - My point?

              My point is, realise what you're buying. People are going on here like the iPad is some kind of productivity tool. No, it's an expensive Apple Playstation with pretensions.

              Of course I'll be downvoted for that. Too many people here who have bought a nice little toy and don't like being told their very expensive toy is a toy.

              And then I'll get called ignorant for it. Oh the irony.

              1. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                @M Gale, @gurner - My point?

                You point is lost on me.

                Available to buy at Toys 'R' Us:

                Toshiba 10" Mini Laptop

                Toshiba 15.6" Dual core laptop

                Elonex 7" and 10" eTouch tablet computers.

                Not available to buy at Toys 'R' Us:


                Please explain why the iPad is a toy and the Laptops and Tablets for sale at Toys 'R' Us are not.

                I'd also like to know why toys are bad and what you're really angry about. ISTM that these are all tools or one sort or another that can (and are) being used by people as toys or productivity devices or even both.

                From what I've read in this thread your actual issue seems to be that it's an Apple product, which is much like someone arguing that a Fiesta is a bad car because it's built by Ford.

              2. Steve Todd

                Your point

                Is that because you can't think of any way that it can be used productively (and you can't have been trying very hard) then it can't possibly be be a productivity tool?

                Here's a couple of ideas for you to start with. Firstly Keynote lets you show PowerPoint presentations (which can also be linked to a projector). Secondly it makes a neat Citrix terminal that can give you VPN access to the corporate application suite.

                Despite your continuing protestations businesses are finding more and more tasks that it can usefully perform, and so by definition it isn't just a toy (though it CAN be used as such).

          3. flameresistant

            Yawn ...

            "It used to work, but not any more."

            Rubbish. In fact the gift card isn't even required. I just mentioned that as a way for your friend to give his child credit to use without risking unintentional abuse of his credit card. Apple even publish an illustrated support article that is top of the google list on how to create an iTunes account without a credit card that explains how to do it and it works.

            When you tried to create the iTunes store account, you or your friend ticked the box that said "I have read and agree to these terms and conditions." before you were prompted for your age. It's quite clear there that you have to be 13 or older.

            1. M Gale

              "It's quite clear there that you have to be 13 or older."

              Not in Argos it wasn't.

              Seriously, you expect to use any iToy without the One And Holy App Store access? Good luck with that.

              Having to activate the bloody thing via iTunes is another stupid and unnecessary step. The toy itself plainly has everything required on-board, so why tether it to a (real) computer? This particular iPod Touch 4 is being bought for an eight year old whose mother does not have a computer or Internet access. Luckily, they know somebody who does, and is able to pre-load a bunch of stuff onto the thing for Christmas.

              Fortunately, it wasn't my laptop that had to be weighed down by that godawful piece of shit known as iTunes. I'm just the guy who recommended they go for an 8GB 4th gen instead of an 8GB 3rd Gen due to the 8GB 3rd gen being a 2nd Gen in disguise. Also the guy they called when they switched their "magical and revolutionary" device on for it to say "FUCK YOU, CONNECT ME TO A COMPUTER YOU TARDS."

              Apple: It Just Works.

              Still, at least now they're well pleased with it. Plenty of free little things and it'll connect anywhere there's wifi access. I've also set up skype for them. The one thing these people I know have, that it seems a lot of people here don't? The realisation that they have just bought a toy. Primarily for an eight year old. And no, he won't be going outside the house with it for a few years yet.

          4. Michael C

            and, so.... what?

            Big deal, you have to give them an account number with your bank. ...and then you can disable electronic access to that card allowing only "available balances" in an iTunes account or gift card to be used, protecting you from yourself.

            Apple's not going to ring up charges on your card just because they have it, and because they have it, they're subject to a myriad of federal regulations and security requirements to protect it (further backed up by both Visa itself and your bank, protecting you from fraudulent charges).

            To have just about anything today, you have to have a credit or debit card. Electronic billing for pretty much any utility, service, online game, subscription, etc requires you have a card. Getting one from your bank is effortless since it's not a secured debt, and thus there is no credit check. Worst case, you can always go to your local grocer and buy a re-loadable Visa Gift card and use THAT.

            The only people who need to jump through hoops to get an iTunes account are a) illegal immigrants and others who can;t legally open a bank account, and b) paranoids with no understanding of modern banking rules or the protections in place over your money, and even those two groups need only buy a disposable credit card...

            1. M Gale


              Disposable pre-paid debit/credit cards... don't work. Yep, that's right. Apple changed that policy a while ago.

              As for whether something is a toy or not based on what shop it is sold in:

              There's your precious iPad Mini, being sold in Toys R Us. 64GB model too. I'd reckon the reason they don't sell the big one is either because Apple won't give it to them or because the big version is for big boys. This doesn't detract from its toy-like nature though, and Toys R Us still sell plenty of iPad accessories. Bluetooth keyboards too. Would that be an oops?

              And no, I consider it completely bloody unnecessary to give Apple bank details after already handing them a metric shitload of money to start with. They don't need or deserve my private and confidential information, and that's exactly what the parent and guardian of the eight year old I've already mentioned, think too!

              Age limit? It's going to be used under supervision, inside the house. This boy's mother is his legal guardian, not Apple.

              Anyway, I've really had enough of arguing with iTards. It's about as productive as trying to troll 4chan. Seriously, enjoy your toys. Just don't try and tell me that they are serious tools to be relied upon.

        2. paul 97

          what if you only want free apps

          And dont want to give apple more information without lying through your teeth?

          1. Michael C


            use a disposable visa gift card, or follow the process noted in apple's own help forums for creating an account without a credit card.

            Why are you paranoid about giving apple information about you anyway? Their data protection is top notch, and audited multiple times per year to be in compliance with the strictest federal security policies, the EXACT same policies btw your own bank has to follow. Your personal data is no more at risk on Apple's servers than in BoAs (arguably more so given the number of breeches BoA has incurred, and Apple has not). That said, I bet you;ve bought at least something online before, and have accounts with your real data registered with several sites using your real ID, and since those sites almost certainly only do credit processing and never store your CC numebr, they're not bound by the same tight security rules apple is, so your personal data is, I'm sure, already out there and at higher risk of theft than simply having an iTunes account.

            If you don;t like iTunes, thats OK. Most people don't. however, don;t fault the fact you have to provide ID of some kind in order to have an account authorized to make purchases (free or not, they have to have something to bind the DRM the content providers force them to use to).

      2. ThomH

        @M Gale

        I suggest you obtain a dictionary. I looked up 'toy' in mine and it seemed not to mention anything about your arguments re: (i) Steve Jobs; (ii) whether a device is locked down, (iii) its price or (iv) a repeat of its price. It seemed to go with a toy being "an object, esp. a gadget or machine, regarded as providing amusement for an adult". Has a netbook ever amused someone? If so then it's a toy.

        Maybe you could argue that it's merely a toy? Then the presence of VNC and office productivity applications would appear to prove you wrong. E.g. it has at least one program that can open, edit and save Word files, displaying each page of A4 at very close to A4 size and with which I can interact with via either a soft or a physical keyboard. That's indisputably a full productivity application.

        Possibly you want to say that most people use it as no more than a toy, that its problem is a combination of its demographics and the majority of the software available for it? In that case it would seem odd that the productivity applications are the biggest sellers.

        So, it is exactly like any other computer in being a toy. It is by no measure merely a toy and use for more serious purposes seems to be common.

      3. Anonymous Coward

        Fixed it for you

        "I relish my ignorance"

      4. paul 97
        Thumb Up

        iTunes is the weak link

        Get a advent vega - for £200 you can throw birds at pigs , surf the web and dont need a google account nor give Emperor Steve Jobs your first born.

        I do agree with your statement - the iPad and vega are both TOYS.

      5. Anonymous Coward

        Chill out! It's not that big of a deal!

        If you don't like it, simply don't buy it! Why act like a fucking 8 year old child?

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Dell Streak anyone?

    Has anyone played with this machine, or is there a good reason I've never actually seen one outside of the O2 store?

  19. Peter Wilkin

    Page 2 incorrect details for iPad

    the iPad has iOS 4.2.1 not 4.1

    also the Wireless only version does GPS , it just doesnt have assisted GPS

  20. Alan Twelve

    iPad looks...

    "Indeed, of all the tablets on the market so far, none can beat the iPad when it comes to looks."

    No. The iPad is ugly. Like, staggeringly so. It looks like a joke - a Fisher Price iPod Activity Centre. Which doesn't detract from its usefulness or usability one jot, but it is decidedly not an attractive piece of kit.

  21. Lan ser


    Such a shame that the crunchpad never made it

    1. Daniel Barnes


      It's been renamed and released as the JooJoo (which is now also dead, apparently).

  22. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    I'm as fast on the ipad as I am on a keyboard, although admittedly I don't touch-type. Writing requires as much thinking and reviewing as typing, whether on PC or ipad, so it works just fine. A couple of 10,000 word documents written entirely on my ipad proves that, although they were written whilst commuting over a period of a month or so and not in a single session. But that's what I needed it to do, and it was the right tool for the job, which was my original point.

  23. Crosser

    Tab Prices wrong, by a big margin.

    As of now the Galaxy Tab is £399 in Comet, £419 in HMV and £395 in Currys/PC World if you show them the Coment price.

  24. Archivist

    Lucky me

    I received an iPad as a gift from a loved one just 2 weeks ago. Upon opening the box I had a dread: What use will it be? Is it a toy? How limited is it's usability? Do I have to pretend to like it?

    After initial configuration I set about using it for all the tasks I normally use my home desktop for, during a weekend day, fully expecting to have to put it down at some stage and go to a "proper" computer:

    Check my multiple pop and imap accounts - perfect; rendered doc, xls, pdf and mpg attachments seamlessly. Replied to a couple of them. Virtual keyboard is acceptable for short drafts but wouldn't want to do a lot with it. One big bonus of a virtual keyboard is that when you switch languages, the keyboard follows! Especially useful for non-Roman character sets.

    Read the news from multiple European and far-eastern news sites. What a calming experience without the flash-based ads running down the side of the page. Only the Korea times did not render well, but Korea is known to be M$'s bitch, so no surprise there... Checked a few forums, posted a coupe of comments - fine.

    VNC'd into my work Linux computers using iTeleport which I chose to buy from the app store (what a superb app). Did my checks and made some tweaks. All worked fine.

    Played music throughout the day using iTunes remote. No reason for me to load low quality compressed files on my limited internal memory, I have a smartphone for that.

    Looked at some YouTube that a friend had linked to. Fine.

    By evening my wife was eager to research next year's holiday, so I gave it to her.... Holiday sites a bit less suited to the touch interface but all were usable.

    Bed time - no silly, I didn't take it with me.. I put it on charge, even though having used it practically all day, the battery indicator said 55% full.

    Have I used it since? Yes daily. Could I live without it? Probably. Which would I choose between my iPad and my laptop? The iPad!

  25. Thomas Wolf

    Lack of Flash never emphasized enough

    When articles about the iPad are written, I'm always amazed that the journalists never seem to mention the lack of Flash support. In our family, we have an iPad, two iPhones, and an iPod Touch. Without a doubt, the most galling thing on these devices is the inability to view Web sites that use Flash. I don't care if Mr. Jobs thinks that people shouldn't use Flash (because it's buggy, memory hungry, etc.) - the fact is that a *lot* of web sites use it and I can't get information off them when I'm mobile (unless I carry my laptop).

    Recently, it has been especially annoying: we're in the market for a new car, so whenever I see a car I like (in magazines or on the road), I'd grab my iPhone or iPad and go the car maker's web site to have a good look - 9 times out of 10, I'd get "Need Flash" before getting detailed views of the car. Just try it yourself!

    I can't replay my township's council meetings either - they're using Flash video too. I had played with the notion of getting my mother an iPad - but abandoned the idea because she visits a lot of game sites - which either use Flash or Java (that, too, is not supported on the iPad).

    I don't have a Galaxy Tab, so I can't comment on its abilities in this respect - but supposedly Android 2.2 and later have built-in Flash support, and I'm sure, as a result, I will be able to consume more web content with it than with the iPad.

    But having said this, I've never regretted the purchase of either the iPhones or the iPad. The iPhones have become indispensible parts of our lives. My wife uses the latter constantly to watch movies in bed (yeah, sad, isn't it? :-) - while I read books on my Kindle.

  26. exexpat

    Had iPad moved over to Galaxy Tab

    Its all about form factor and weight for me - the galaxy tab is half the weight of the ipad and its form factor is the same as a kindle - so ok to hold in one hand. I returned the ipad after 1 week - way too heavy and akward for me and much more girlfriend friendly as can keep one hand on her!!!

    I'm enjoying the galaxy so far - its nice to have another os to play with. The ebook reader on it is perfect (my kindle 3 is going to my better half) and I've not had any problems with it so far. I guess it depends on usage. I turned off the 3g so that has increased the battery life significantly.

    I seem to be getting at least 7 hours out of it.

    I use it on the sofa and next to the bed - the ipad was too big to do this.

    Big phone? yes some of it might be but I'm getting old and can't look at my iphone 4 screen for too long! I like being able to browse the full websites and flash has been ok on it.

    BTW I just noticed the tab has had its price reduced its now £399 at amazon. With price erosion like this it will be £200 come february!

    1. Anonymous Coward

      Re: Had iPad moved over to Galaxy Tab

      "I use it on the sofa and next to the bed - the ipad was too big to do this."

      Nooo! You're so not "on message" with this.

      You're supposed to tell us about how you just "love" curling up on the sofa with your iPad while your well-trained pets whisper sweet nothings into the ear of yourself, your lovely wife and 2-3 adorable children - each using their own iPad, naturally ("How we look back fondly on those minor squabbles about who got to use it when we only had one! Nobody wanted to watch 3D-HD TV or use the X-Box, Blu-Ray or even the MacBook Air, any more!") - while having Belgian chocolates inserted into your mouths at regular intervals, at least while the pets are not busy using their own iPads and people have to finger their own chocolates. "How wonderful it is to live the iLifestyle together as an iFamily (restrictions on media sharing may apply)!" And so on.

      All this you do while reclining during the weekends or during slack periods in your schedule as media professionals. Otherwise, you're surely on the open road in your white Range Rover... all of you using your iPads, of course.

  27. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    if the wife is happy....

    I gave my wife an ipad as an anniversary present. Best 500 quid I ever spent. The only way you'll ever get her to give it up is by prying out of her cold dead hands. She doesn't care much for fancy games, nor for photo editing, writing software, burning dvds nor anything else that requires a bit of grunt and faffing about. She does like browsing the web, watching Eastenders on the iplayer, and using the rightmove app to look for her dream house. She can surf the web wherever we have a decent 3G or wifi hotspot signal. She can access all the documents she needs in work meetings. The ipad does all of those very well indeed, and it fits in her handbag.

  28. Dave Fox
    Thumb Up

    Its only toy when you play with it! :)

    I have an iMac, a Macbook, a 11.6" Macbook Air, and I had an original V1 iPod (my wife has an iPod Touch). That's in addition to a couple of Windows laptops, and a Windows desktop.

    You'd think that I'd have an iPhone and an iPad, but I have Desire HD and a Galaxy Tab.

    Whilst I'm not keen on the Steve Job sanitized view of the world, my reasons for having a Tab over an iPad are simple - for *my* needs the iPad is too big. My Macbook Air isn't that much bigger and heavier than an iPad and it is much more versatile - it cost twice the amount though, so that's not a dig at the iPad at all, which is a great device!

    My Tab on the other hand is the perfect size and weight for *my* needs - it's also just as functional (IMO) as an iPad. That's not to say that it is better than an iPad - just that it meets my needs better than an iPad would.

    Some would say that it is a toy, but for me it is an essential business tool - when I'm out and about I can use my Tab for a variety of tasks including remote desktop to various servers I need to attend to, Citrix served applications, viewing and creating office documents, and ad hoc web browsing.

    When I'm not working, it serves as a media player (and server), games machine, rss reader, occasional ebook reader (only when I don't have my Kindle with me!) amongst other things. It's also the tool I am most likely to use a night to browse the web, which used to be a task for my Macbook (not the Air, that's a business travelling tool).

    Yes, I could do much of this on my Desire HD, but the simple facts of the matter are that the Tab has almost 3x the screen area of the Desire HD and a higher resolution. That is a key differentiator for me. In fact, I hardly ever use my Desire HD anything other than a phone these days because for most purposes (other than phone calls) it is more comfortable and convenient to use the Tab.

    So for *my* purposes, it's an absolutely fantastic device - and it fits in coat and jacket pockets, which is a massive win for me.

  29. Androne
    Thumb Up

    Tab Up

    I have a Powerbook G4 and a Macbook Pro, and have used an Iphone 3G for the last couple of years. You'd have thought that I would have migrated to the iPhone 4 and perhaps iPad, right?

    I was given (as in completely free) an iPhone 4. But I chose to buy the Galaxy S. And then I recevied the Galaxy Tab as a gift.

    Personally, I couldn't be happier with the S + Tab combo. The Tab does a lot of stuff that isn't covered at all in most (all?) of the flimsy, superficial reviews that I've read - this review included.

    I've worked for a telecoms network provider for almost 10 years, so I wanted the best available handset and tablet that were available. Nice that the hardware and environment is so similar in the Galaxy handset and tablet, and that the Tab fits in all the jeans/'trouser and jacket pockets that I use. Generally, portability (access) is important to me - I also own two of the Nokia N series, and several netbooks. Tab beats them all hands down, for me.

    And last but not least, I didn't want to buy something with such a silly name as an iSanitaryProduct.

  30. Peter Kay

    They're all fiddly toys so far

    If I wanted to fling birds around, I'd buy a Nintendo DS. Even if I wanted to browse from the sofa/bed I'd still prefer a keyboard as the responses I want to type extend beyond 'LOL'.

    None of my social circle have one, but I have seen at least a couple on the train - being used in a variety of raised cases as a book. A book in huge iPad format, on a train, as opposed to a custom device like a Kindle. Boy, that's sensible.

    1. Michael C


      Since you;ve never had one, you've clearly never taken to typing on it. I borrowed one for slightly longer than a week during an extended and in depth comparison on several e-readers. After just a few hours with it, i was typing on it at near my physical keyboard speed, and had no issues writing a several page article on it, not typing long forum posts or complex e-mails. I can hit about 80wpm on a full keyboard, about 65 on a laptop keyboard, and I was hitting about 55 on the iPad, with little practice. On netbook keyboards, i fall under 50wpm, so to me it was BETTER than an ultraportable's cramped layout. With time, and getting used to auto-complete (which i think should be ported to desktop OS as well), i could easily hit 60-65wpm if I tried.

      Do i "like" typing on it? compared to a full keyboard, hell no. compared to a laptop keyboard, I dislike them both about equally. Did it get in the way of my productivity? barely enough to report, and over time that would change to a "no."

      Why have an ebook reader that is JUST an ebook reader? I can not only read on an iPad, i can edit a word doc, respond to an e-mail on the commute to work, play a quick game, watch a video or podcast at lunch, watch a TV episode while the wife is watching some other boring show without having to leave the living room to do it and hear her bitch about how I'm not helping watch the kids, it's SO much more than an ebook reader. Heck, we slung it from the back of the drivers seat and played a few Disney movies for the kid on a road trip while I had it. The longer I had it, the more uses i found for it. I did an exhaustive demo of the Kindle, kindle 2, Nook, and iPad, and recently added the Tab to that cycle. the ONLY one I regretted giving back at the end of the week was the iPad. the only reason i don't have one yet is we're in the process of buying our house from it's owner, and cash flow is restricted.

      I know people who use them to do business presentations, access CRM systems, review documents (which is SO much nicer on a Portrait display than a notebook, let alone a netbook or ultra-portable), deal with the flood of e-mail, and a dozen other things with them. I know a lot of people who simply shifted from having an ultra-portable plus a "real" notebook, plus a machine at home to simply having an iPad and one good laptop they rarely lug around. I know several who just abandoned the notebook al together and use only a desktop PC now with the iPad. the iPad can do 80% or more of what most people do in a day well, and most of the rest with little trouble.

      A week with the Tab, btw, cramped virtual keyboard, no productivity apps suited to the larger screen (no good productivity app at all to compete with Pages or keynote), PenTile AMOLED screens suck for reading text, and the battery dies too quick. If it was 9-10", with twice the battery and Android 3.0 it might fly as a real competitor, but it was little more than a big android phone without a phone and certainly no help on the productivity front, and the poorest e-reader i reviewed.

      As for e-readers, if all you're looking for is reading, and are looking to spend a very small amount of money, or you do most of that reading outdoors in bright light (where optometrists tell you NEVER to read due to heavy eye strain issues) i can recommend an e-ink based system (i preferred the nook to the kindle options, but only because it was a more open platform not locked solely to Amazon's book store). That said, if you read regularly in poor lighting (subway, dim lit rooms, in bed, etc), stay the hell away from e-ink. Although very sharp in normal light, and a bit less effected by bright light (though it was still effected), e-ink was the worst performer in sub-ideal lighting conditions, i even liked the AMOLED screen better in the dark. If you can spend a bit more, a used or refurn iPad is a better bet, especialyl if you don;t already have an ultraportable and are interested in doing anything at all more than reading.

    2. Anonymous Coward


      If you want to play an online shoot 'em up or something like that, do you insist on using a dedicated console or do you 'settle' for your Windows PC? Isn't Windows, an multifunction OS, the biggest gaming platform around?

      You've seen a couple of people on trains reading books on iPads, and you surmise that this is all these people do with them? The point, numbnuts, of a multifunction device is just that. It has multiple functions that not only provide various functions, they also mean that you only need to carry one device! I know! Genius. Reading books on the iPad* is just one of the many 'functions' it provides. Gimp.

      *this also rings true if your religion is Android, just replace 'iPad' with your tablet of your choice.

  31. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    For REAL mass market, need it to work for kids

    ... and nearly all kids sites are written in flash. That's why if I buy either, it will be the Samsung.

    1. Ivan Headache

      The kid's Market

      Last year after the BETT show, I posted a comment on one of the iPhone theads, that I was suprised by the number of vendors showing school uses for the iPhone. Not just for theachers but for whole classroom use.

      BETT comes up again in a couple of weeks and I fully expect to see as many vendors punting the iPad for classroom use.

      Sorry if that sounds like a 'Today Programme' news item.

  32. Ojustaboo

    I think I want one

    I've had a touch for 8 months and it's the most used gadget I've ever brought.

    I have an old 36" wide screen CRT TV in the bedroom, since owning the touch, have never turned the TV on as the pic is such better quality.

    TV shows, films, ebooks etc, I use my tough all the time for this sort of thing.

    So far the touch has done everything I've needed it to do with out jailbreaking it. Can even stream my Sky TV to it (use VUduo box for Sky TV instead of their own HD box).

    However, I almost exclusively use the touch when I go to bed, for an hour or so before I go to sleep. Lying on the pillow, holding the touch in one hand.

    The only reason I can see for wanting the ipad is the very obvious one of the larger screen. better for Video, better for ebooks etc.

    But I can also see that being it's downfall for me. Not being able to lie on the bed, tossing and turning as I do, while comfortably holding it in one hand.

    When (if) the price plummets, I might be tempted. But at the moment, top be honest, while it may be a small screen, my touch is so clear, so easy to hold in one hand, that I'm happy.

  33. Anonymous Coward

    Best product of 2011

    Ipad version 2.0 with Hi-Res camera and FaceTime. I'm putting $100 USD on it despite the H8trs on this site. Bring on the thumbs down.

  34. David Barr

    Samsung should have held back

    They should have waited for 3.0 and launched something with a higher spec than the iPad. Now the Galaxy brand will be forever tainted with a half size poor iPad knockoff.

    Everybody who isn't Apple needs to get rid of their inferiority complexes and try to create something better than anything out there rather than trying to create something cheaper.

    A few hundred squids for a gadget like an phone, tablet etc isn't much money really. Not everybody is not buying Apple because we don't have enough money.

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