Weekend Open Forum: Will you get a tablet this year?

By on February 18, 2011, 6:38 PM
When Apple announced the iPad early last year many of us had our doubts on whether the tablet form factor would finally reach the masses. Not only were they trying to squeeze a new category between smartphones and full-fledged laptops, but also challenging the incredibly popular netbook with a locked down device that promised to be the best way to experience the web and didn't even support Flash. Yet tablets took over the spotlight and iPads are flying off shelves.

Building on the success of the iPhone, Apple did a great job marrying iOS with the larger form factor, while offering a competitive price. Today several big-name manufacturers are coming on strong with competing Android tablets, and we expect some movement from the BlackBerry and webOS camp as well. Now that we've had some time to see how the market evolves and get an idea were it's going we want to ask you: will you buy a tablet this year?


I'm definitely interested in getting one mostly for leisure computing, traveling light and maybe dabble with the SDK. But I'm still undecided on the device and platform, so I'm holding off until Apple announces the expected follow up to the iPad to pick something from what's available. Needless to say, whatever I choose, I don't expect it to replace my laptop as my primary machine. What about you, have you set your sights on a specific device or will you skip tablets altogether?




User Comments: 50

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matrix86 matrix86 said:

I wish. Maybe if I got a new job that didn't underpay me :P 8:25 for a supervisor position...gotta love wal-mart. But I do plan to eventually get one. It's just hard now because $400 for a leisure item it's not in the budget...and Dave Ramsey says if it's not in the budget, don't buy it :P

Guest said:

I'm going to buy a tablet computer, when the IPad came out I wanted a windows one because I wanted to run the software I normally use rather than be restricted to Apple approved apps... but now the Android ones (Xoom, Galaxy Tab 10.1, mystery device Sony is making) and the RIM Playbook are taking top positions. I'm mostly looking for flash compliance and battery life with a side consideration towards 10" over 7"

LightHeart said:

Still too early (read: costs too much) for me. Maybe after the competition settles down and prices come down while features go up.

IAMTHESTIG said:

Maybe... will definitely be looking. I would prefer a Windows 7 tablet but as its been stated they are all quite expensive. I'm still waiting for more devices to come out but I have several in my crosshairs.

Guest said:

In the second half of 2011.

Tekkaraiden Tekkaraiden said:

I plan to buy a Playbook if the price is right.

Cota Cota said:

No, i will stick to my gaming PC and im sure i dont need one :P

Guest said:

I was considering buying an iPad this month but with Apple charging 30% fees to content providers like Amazon, I'm not shure Amazon will keep Kindle on the iPad. For me, no Kindle on iPad = no iPad. As for the Kindle device, I like the concept of eInk, I just don't think I would like whole books without colours.

princeton princeton said:

Guest said:

I was considering buying an iPad this month but with Apple charging 30% fees to content providers like Amazon, I'm not shure Amazon will keep Kindle on the iPad. For me, no Kindle on iPad = no iPad. As for the Kindle device, I like the concept of eInk, I just don't think I would like whole books without colours.

If you like E-ink and color check out the notion ink adam or other devices utilizing pixel Qi displays. I'd love to copy some info here but you can probably find all you need to know through google.

gwailo247, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

I'll take a good look by the end of the year and see where things are. I would really prefer to get a good Windows tablet, but I'm not sure if the hardware will be there. If a good Windows one isn't available, I'll consider other options, but will be less likely to buy it.

matrix86 matrix86 said:

gwailo247 said:

I'll take a good look by the end of the year and see where things are. I would really prefer to get a good Windows tablet, but I'm not sure if the hardware will be there. If a good Windows one isn't available, I'll consider other options, but will be less likely to buy it.

Agreed. The first tablet i've seen running Win7 was the MSI tablet...and it sucked...BIG TIME! It may be smarter to wait till 2013 for a GOOD Windows tablet. That'll give them a year to improve hardware and what-not. It's a long time to wait, but worth it in my opinion.

Sarcasm Sarcasm said:

The problem is that they are still too pricey and are poor value propositions. They are more like luxury items IMO. I think maybe once the software and hardware catches up to laptop levels of performance is when I'll get one.

Archean Archean, TechSpot Paladin, said:

Except for entertainment and casual web browsing, tablets aren't for me at this moment in time; and overall a notebook is still far superior option in every respect, until by some miracle this is changed, I wouldn't bother with tablets.

Nima304 said:

I highly doubt it. Seems like a waste of money to me.

NeoFlux said:

Just sold my wifes old Asus EEE 900 netbook and looking for a replacement. Good 10" tablet should do the trick (definitely no iPad), mainly browsing and little typing planned. Then we'll see how it copes with stuff - might get one for myself.

treeski treeski said:

Tablets definitely seem like appealing devies... but I just can't imagine getting much use out of one. What do you all plan on using your tablets for? And when?

fpsgamerJR62 said:

Nope, I'll wait till they glue a proper keyboard to the tablet PCs. Oh wait, they already sell that gizmo, it's called a notebook .

complexxL9 complexxL9 said:

I also can't think of any use for tablets in my everyday life.

Guest said:

I'm waiting for the ipad 2 and selling my dusty asus eee hab.

if Ipad 2 doesn't meet my expectations, i'll use the money to upgrade my laptop to a sandy bridge with a discrete graphics.

-apple fanboi

ET3D, TechSpot Paladin, said:

I just ordered a Motorola DEFY, and hopefully this Android phone will fulfill my needs for mobile browsing and the like. I'm also planning to get a Brazos netbook soon (possibly the Acer 522) to replace my old Fujitsu P1510D, whose keyboard has stopped working well. I hope that this combination will solve my mobility needs for the near future.

spikester48661 spikester48661 said:

no got 2 laptops and 2 desktops. tablets are for looking at the web a android phone is as good.

mosu said:

Unless quad core, SSD and HDMI connexion, on top of b/g/n wi-fi,and should be capacitive Amoled.

Guest said:

Love the Xoom ....if it was around $399 or less the mass market, including me, would seriously consider buying one. The current prices are just to high..Hopefully as more manufactures come out with Tablets the price will come down. Right now the wow factor is the only reason I want one..>Would be cool to surf in bed (really need flash)..Other than that not to useful in my book and defiantly not worth spending $600+. Hopefully most other people will wait and force manufactures to drive down prices. If people start buying a lot of them at the $500+ range the prices will never come down.

Guest said:

Probably not... I have a tablet laptop. and 2 other laptops, 2 desktops... plus an ipod and iphone. I don't have room for a tablet!

On second thought, i may get one. :X

Guest said:

NO! IMO they are pretty slow and useless.

princeton princeton said:

Guest said:

Love the Xoom ....if it was around $399 or less the mass market, including me, would seriously consider buying one. The current prices are just to high..Hopefully as more manufactures come out with Tablets the price will come down. Right now the wow factor is the only reason I want one..>Would be cool to surf in bed (really need flash)..Other than that not to useful in my book and defiantly not worth spending $600+. Hopefully most other people will wait and force manufactures to drive down prices. If people start buying a lot of them at the $500+ range the prices will never come down.

Moto wouldn't make any profit selling the Xoom for $399.

TrekExpert TrekExpert said:

I'm, not sure if i will buy a tablet this year. They still seem overpriced to me for what they offer. If I were to by a tablet though i think it would most likely be the the Eee Pad Slider when it comes out. I think that since a tablets main purpose is mobility and functionality I believe that the Eee Pad Slider has a clear advantage over the competition.

Lurker101 said:

Don't want one. Don't need one. Won't buy one.

ikesmasher said:

ill get a 5 year old HP tablet PC. why would you chose an ipad over a full windows system? pft.

yRaz yRaz said:

after I saw that Acer and windows phone thing I would love to see a tablet with that OS. WP7 is a wonderful OS and I think it would transfer well to tablets. I don't know if I'd buy a tablet. I'd like to get one because they are cool, but that isn't a good enough reason to buy one. I'm not a big fan of android and the iOS is just silly... Although, I have not had the opportunity to even hold a tablet. I need a new video card more so that will come first.

ET3D, TechSpot Paladin, said:

ikesmasher said:

ill get a 5 year old HP tablet PC. why would you chose an ipad over a full windows system? pft.

Weight, user interface, and (to a lesser extent) applications and battery life. Really, these old 2kg tablets are a completely different product that has a much smaller market.

ET3D, TechSpot Paladin, said:

yRaz said:

I'm not a big fan of android and the iOS is just silly... Although, I have not had the opportunity to even hold a tablet.

That's why you're not a fan. Find someone who can demonstrate the iPad to you. It's cool enough that you might stop thinking it's silly. It's not cool enough that I'll pay that price, but tablets certainly offer coolness that no Windows PC has, mainly in the form of a touch UI that's responsive and well integrated, but also in features such as integrated GPS and accelerometer with nice software to take advantage of such hardware.

IvanAwfulitch IvanAwfulitch said:

Let's be fair and add qualifiers here.

Tablets are cool. They always have been, and that's because they offer a touch-based operating system that's capable of delivering media entertainment and applications for productivity with a tiny bit of gaming. Touch-screen items have been around since the 80s, but weren't harnessed and made available for the average user until the tablets and iPod touch were conceived. That opened a whole new venue for consumers and a market for the larger computing companies. They have an air of excitement around them because of how small, compact, and surprisingly powerful they are for their size.

That said, a tablet is limited in its capability because of what it is. Because it is a tablet, it doesn't have the flexibility that a desktop system has. It can't be (easily) upgraded, and they can be mighty expensive. They are convenient though, and have that coolness factor to balance out some of the negatives.

But for those of us that are much more concerned with computer power and graphical ability, a desktop computer is our cup of tea. We don't have a need for a tablet or small touchscreen device. Such a thing is ancillary at best. All of our needs are met with what we already have. While it's cool and convenient, it's money that no one with a gaming rig feels they have to spend.

Before I got my gaming rig, I had an iPod touch and I loved it because of the freedoms it offered. Internet connectivity wherever there was free wifi, some neat gaming apps, my music on hand at all times, email...and the fact that it had a nifty touch screen. I loved it for all of those reasons. But now that I have my gaming rig, I only ever use it for checking facebook when I can't use my PC.

Tablets will "wow" you. They will impress you with their ability. But if you're serious about your computing needs, you'll feel like it's "a sort of neat tech-toy that's beyond your price range and won't meet all of your needs, so screw it".

gooderguy gooderguy said:

No use for one really. I sure could of used one 15 years ago as I spent over an hour on a bus everyday in Ottawa, it would of been great for reading, internet and email.

yRaz yRaz said:

ET3D said:

yRaz said:

I'm not a big fan of android and the iOS is just silly... Although, I have not had the opportunity to even hold a tablet.

That's why you're not a fan. Find someone who can demonstrate the iPad to you. It's cool enough that you might stop thinking it's silly. It's not cool enough that I'll pay that price, but tablets certainly offer coolness that no Windows PC has, mainly in the form of a touch UI that's responsive and well integrated, but also in features such as integrated GPS and accelerometer with nice software to take advantage of such hardware.

I've always hated the way macs look, I couldn't use one for that reason. I sold my iPod touch a few months after I bought it because I couldn't stand it. It is too flashy and toyish to me. I can't stand all the curves on the icons, I like right angles. WP7 looks cool while keeping it professional. While we are on this topic, a lot of people have asked me about my windows phone. Almost everyone who plays with it LOVES it. I don't think this will be much of a surprise, but android users tend to like it over their phone rather than iOS users. Android finally got the GUI down with the latest version though. At first it seemed like they wanted to take everything that iOS did right and try to make it a little different. Instead, Microsoft said F apple, we're gonna do our own thing.

Anyway, I'd just like to see a WP7 variant on a tablet. I've seen reviews of Android tablets and the iPad, I've got to say I'm not that impressed. I'd like to see some more powerful hardware in some of these, but the technology is still very new. I guess as an enthusiast tablets don't have much to offer me.

The best way I have ever heard tablets, as we know them today, described was, "the rich mans toy."

zillion said:

...honestly dont see why i would need a tablet, ive been looking at it and still i decided to buy a new 24" led monitor instead and i can say i havent regret it yet.

My gf begged for a netbook so i bought it for her (as any good bf does when a gf begs for anyting) and i have used it a few times, but everytime i end up shutting it off in anger, the endless waiting, the slow loading etc. Im just too die hard fan of power pcÂ's, big monitor, big hardware and a obsidian 800D casing

Johny47 said:

I don't really care for tablets but I'm looking forward to see what's 'up' with the Playstation tablet.

nismo91 said:

I'd love to have one. but after all I didn't think I need it, so not gonna buy one this year.

supertech supertech said:

I had the iPad since it came out and just sold it because I found it far too slow for a $800 toy (yes, it comes out to just under that for 16GB 3G model here). I found that apps were crashing often, email was very slow, and the browsing experience on Safari is mediocre at best. Of course, no flash support, just adds to the mounds of problems. I found myself running to my laptop or desktop pc several times a day when needing to access certain websites that contained rich media.

I sold it a couple of weeks ago for about $550 and are in the hunt for a new tablet pc. This year will bring intense competition for the tablet pc market with the Motorolla Xoom, HP touchpad, BlackBerry Playbook, iPad2, Asus EEE slate, Dell Streak, and more. I would stay away from smaller companies and their touchscreen products will be inferior and ruin the whole experience. Apple and Samsung's touchscreens are industry leading right now.

I can't wait to get my next tablet.

princeton princeton said:

IvanAwfulitch said:I had an iPod touch and I loved it because of the freedoms it offered.

That line just completely destroyed your credibility.

TorturedChaos, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

Maybe if I spent a lot of time on the road I might want one, but for the most part I have access to my computer at home, at work, or if I do go somewhere for a few days I have my (older) laptop. While my laptop is a bit bigger and hard to carry around it can do pretty much the same thing as most tablets.

I see a lot of the tablets have 3G or 4G wireless built into them, but I live a very rural area, where decent cell phone coverage is sometimes hard to find, let alone full 3G speeds, and I don't even want to guess when we will get "4G" here.

So no I don't plan on buying a tablet (or a smart phone) anytime in the near future. Between my laptop and my Razr I'm good.

tonylukac said:

I don't see a need for one when a netbook can be had for under $200 with full blown windows. Don't you need a pc also for some of them to work? How does this appeal to the lone computer buyer? Like someone sort of said, minimum wage is about $7 an hour and hasn't risen for 30 years.

Relic Relic, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

I'm not sure if I will be getting one this year considering price/specs for them are simply off this early into the game. I plan on upgrading to a better notebook this year personally as my current one is quite dated but still more useful then most of the tablets on the market. Maybe in a year or two I'll get myself one as I've always dreamed of having a tablet since Star Trek =D.

jjbeard926 said:

No tablet for me in the foreseeable future. I have no need for one, they don't meet my computing needs. I prefer to use a desktop for my primary computer both for the advanced graphics it allows for gaming and digital art as well as the larger storage of multiple drives. Then I can use my cell for mobile computing needs since I only use that for maps and the occasional facebook post.

IvanAwfulitch IvanAwfulitch said:

Princeton said:

IvanAwfulitch said:I had an iPod touch and I loved it because of the freedoms it offered.

That line just completely destroyed your credibility.

Cherry-picking lines from an argument and ignoring the context completely destroys yours.

Route44 Route44, TechSpot Ambassador, said:

In a word: NO.

leondobr said:

I can't think of a single selling point for a tablet when I can get a small, full featured notebook with a mouse. I hate all touch pads, they're a real step backward.

brucethetech said:

matrix86 said:

I wish. Maybe if I got a new job that didn't underpay me :P 8:25 for a supervisor position...gotta love wal-mart. But I do plan to eventually get one. It's just hard now because $400 for a leisure item it's not in the budget...and Dave Ramsey says if it's not in the budget, don't buy it :P

i like that. a dave fan. Live like no one else. and everyone else has an iPad.

wizardB wizardB said:

Nope useless toy

MrAnderson said:

I'm almost going to go get an iPad 2 tomorrow as an impulse buy... I mean everthing else right now is disappointing either in some way of functionality and price point. And well I can use my bestbuy for 18 months with no interest... and that added up to abot 37 USD per month for 18 moths for the 32GB black model... heck yeahz! We will see... if there is a line tomorrow... I might just say nay!

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