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Thread: Tablet question

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    Tablet question

    I didn't know where to post this question except in the forum I hang out in the most. Please move it if it needs to be placed else where.

    I have a W7 desktop. I want to buy a tablet for my better-half, who has never been interested in computers, and is "tech-phobic."

    Recently she indicated an interest in learning, so she could use email, and communicate with friends.

    I would appreciate any recommendations regarding a tablet, and also any suggestions from those who have helped a non-computer type person to feel comfortable in using same.

    Thanks for any help you can provide,
    Dick

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    Super Moderator RetiredGeek's Avatar
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    Dick,

    If the main purpose of the tablet is to email and keep in touch (read facebook or similar social media) my recommendation would be an Amazon Fire HD tablet (size is up to you).

    Reasons:
    1. Relatively inexpensive.
    2. Easy to use version of Android.
    3. Build is rugged.
    4. Long battery life.
    5. Bonus: A great eReader.


    My wife and I both have one (7") and love it. Often on short trips where I used to take my laptop I now only take the Kindle. If we're leaving the country that's all I ever take!

    HTH
    May the Forces of good computing be with you!

    RG

    PowerShell & VBA Rule!

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    I use a Nexus 7 for access on the go. It's the WiFi only version so I don't need to buy a SIM / pay exorbitant prices every time I change country. Plus free WiFi is pretty much universal.

    cheers, Paul

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    There are any number of size and price points for Windows tablets now. Also, prices of Windows notebooks are plummeting for entry level machines.

    Joe

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    The recommendation of the Kindle Fire HD by RetiredGeek is a good one. An Amazon tablet will certainly meet the needs of someone who simply wants to use email and social media.

    The main drawback to the Amazon tablets is that they do not have access to Google Play app store but are restricted to using the Amazon app store. The Amazon app store has a good selection of apps but pales in comparison to Google Play app store. At first this isn't a problem but as you wife becomes a more sophisticated user it could become a limitation.

    My first tablet was a Kindle Fire tablet but I quickly outgrew it and now have a Nexus 7 Android tablet as well as a Surface Pro 3 Windows tablet.

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    I find Android a much worse performer on similar hardware, than Windows. If you take the Android route, be sure to get something beefier, in terms of hardware specs. In principle, just to use email and social networks, anything should be good enough, as long as the hardware doesn't make the experience worse.

    If you have the possibility of taking your wife for a hands experience with the hardware and the software, that may help you make a choice that has her blessing. Don't forget that usually initial expectations on usage can be rapidly outdated, depending on the success of the early contacts with the purchased hardware, so buying something too limited may turn out to be a not so good decision.

    Good luck .
    Rui
    -------
    R4

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    I recommend either a Samsung Galaxy Tablet or an Asus. I personally use a Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 as my main tablet, but my previous one was an Asus Transformer, First Generation. Both of my kids use Asus 7" MEMO tablets, and we have 3 different Samsung Galaxy phones in the family. Both companies make high quality products. I would choose either and if one was on sale I would choose it over another.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dick-Y View Post
    I didn't know where to post this question except in the forum I hang out in the most. Please move it if it needs to be placed else where.

    I have a W7 desktop. I want to buy a tablet for my better-half, who has never been interested in computers, and is "tech-phobic."

    Recently she indicated an interest in learning, so she could use email, and communicate with friends.

    I would appreciate any recommendations regarding a tablet, and also any suggestions from those who have helped a non-computer type person to feel comfortable in using same.

    Thanks for any help you can provide,
    Dick
    I know you wanted recommendations on a tablet, however why not get her a smartphone (Samsung Galaxy, iPhone, etc) and have her use that to practice with email and chatting with friends face to face using the phones chatting app or downloading one for free. She could download her respective email app (gmail, yahoo, hotmail, etc) and start emailing away. She can talk and send email at the same time if you have AT&T. If screen size is a concern, get a bigger smartphone for her. That way she don't have to carry two devices and she could practice anywhere she goes.

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    Personally, I prefer a laptop for my mobile needs but if you want to try a pad my vote would be with an Android based one there's a wide choice of makes, models and sizes at prices from 50 to 500 (UK prices). Another advantage of Android pads is the ease and low cost of upgrading memory with a 32gb microSD card and the simplicity of being able to connect USB devices.

    The disadvantage of buying Android branched products such as the Kindle Fire, Samsung, Hudl, etcetera is that they are intentionally modified to be 'supplier centric' and often restrict full access to the wealth of standard Android services, such as the Google Play store.

    The Nexus range are considered to be best in class but a few months ago I bought a well reviewed 10.1, 4core ' unknown' brand Android pad from Amazon for only 64 and was really surprised at the quality. It does everything I need in a pad and has proven reliable so far. Similarly, a friend recently bought a well reviewed 7 4 core for only 47 and he is delighted with it. The only thing I would caution is that there are also some pretty poor unknown brands out there so the key thing is to read the reviews on Amazon and go for one with high numbers of good reviews.

    Here's an example of a reasonably well reviewed $50 7 pad:
    http://www.amazon.com/Dragon-Touch-Y...ct_top?ie=UTF8

    IMHO, the non-Android alternatives, such as these below, do not really match up to Android's adaptability and low cost.

    There are currently some bargains to be had on Win8 based tablets but that's only because the whole venture has been a costly debacle and manufacturers are unloading stock - who knows what will happen to support with Win10 on the way?

    Apple products are well made but so they should be when they are the most expensive by quite a margin. With anything 'Apple' you are also locking yourself into their expensive peripheral products and support structure.
    Remember rule #1: If it ain't broke, don't fix it!

    Industrial electrical engineer, running a system building/repair business in Cornwall UK, for the last 15 years.

    Built my first computer in 1978 - in the days when you had to hand-solder in all the components
    and 16k RAM was considered extravagant!

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    I recently got an ASUS Transformer Book T100TA with a keyboard dock, from the Microsoft Store (Signature Edition) for $329.00. That compares very favorably with Chromebooks, Android tablets and iPad. It even competes with high-end Amazon Kindle Fire tablets.

    There isn't any Google Play in this Windows 8.1 with Bing tablet, and I was careful to get the 64GB onboard memory, so as not to be dealing with a compressed OS image (WIMBoot).

    Overall, the screen requires reading glasses for me, and the keyboard is too small for extended typing. But for travel and meetings, this is a good tablet. It has multi-touch for those "Universal" (Metro-style) Apps.

    Screen resolution isn't great, but there is Wireless Direct (WiDi or Miracast). With a Smart TV or an HDMI dongle, this works out well for external screen-mirroring. Anything which shows on the tablet screen shows on the HDTV display. With sound. Great for streaming video. WiDi doesn't go through the router, but is direct device to device in the Wireless-N low-band spectrum. It's also pretty much line of sight.

    The Atom Processor is a bit pokey, but it works for light processing tasks. No problems with HD video.

    So this is a possibility, if your wife wants to stick with Windows. This is full Windows 8.1, but not Pro. Also not RT.
    -- Bob Primak --

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