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What should I be aware of when looking for a new tablet?

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I'm pretty technologically savvy. I've hung around this form for a long time but, I have never really ventured into the field of tablets.

I'm looking to purchase a tablet for my aunt, she is pretty much a computer novice.

I have two questions. What should I look for in general when comparing tablets?


She has a business on the side selling candles and crafts, she would like to use her tablet for immediately taking down orders. She also likes to take a lot of pictures and do different artistic things. With this in mind what would you guys recommend that I look for?

Thanks in advance, I appreciate the help.
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What should I look for in general when comparing tablets?
Same kind of things you'd look for in a new smartphone:

- Dual/quad-core processor
- Display resolution/ppi (nexus 10 far superior to galaxy note 10.1)
- Storage
- Battery life (7000mah galaxy note 10.1/9000mah nexus 10)

I know that's not giving specifics, apart from a comparison for the remainder of my post's sake, but it is a very wide market.

In terms of 'bang for your buck', the Google Nexus range are the best at their price-point for a 7" and 10" tablet.

I'm not sure what your budget is, but the new Galaxy Note 10.1 comes with a stylus which may appeal to her and is - from what I gather, having not used one personally - a more user-intuitive option given all their TouchWiz stuff/stylus orientated features etc. Nexus 10 is a better tablet though.

Or you could just buy her an iPad (please don't).

Thanks for the info I appreciate it.

Unfortunately before I saw this I purchased her the Asus transformer. It has the third generation Nvidia processor which, I understand the a hot component at the time.

I purchased this one thinking that it would be reasonably future proof even though I know when it comes to mobile devices there is no such thing as future proof. She just wants basic web surfing, photo taking and I could also see her using it as an MP3 player.

Was it a good purchase, if I was looking for something that would be a little more robust and powerful and longer lived than some other tablets?

I definitely was not going to buy her an iPad. I hate Apple in general. It was my understanding there that the iPads were the cream of the crop when it comes to tablets. Why are they something that should be avoided.
No problem.

ASUS Transformer is a decent enough tablet; it was probably overpriced when it first hit the market.

iPads are nice, but far too expensive for what they are.

Thanks for the help.

Even though I posted the question, I made the decision before there were any responses. I talked to a friend of mine for a little bit of help. It seems like the Nvidia processor that is in the transformer seems to be the hot component on the tablet market from what I had read and researched.

I'm just hoping I didn't buy something that was excessively expensive without giving me a whole lot in return. Although, I suppose in the tablet field things are outdated very quickly and you will always eventually find your self in that situation.
Well if the tablet suits your needs and she is happy, then it's really neither here nor there!

That is absolutely the correct mindset to have. With technology and tablets especially (at least that's my impression) technology is advancing extremely rapidly. With anything that is computerized you can always have something better all you need to do is spend more money :-).
A tablet is the latest gadget in the market. It is handy and light weight. Purchasing a tablet can be a good investment. But the following points if kept in mind will go a long way in giving you a product that satisfies your needs.

a) Operating System. This is the backbone of the tablet. There are many operating systems that run a tablet in the market, but basically the 3 most important systems are

i) Apple’s iOS. This is the mobile system used by the iPad, iPhone and iPod touch. The iOS is user friendly and has a wide spectrum of iPad apps. At present it has over 425000 apps. The best part is that these apps can be downloaded with minimal effort and easily sync with the PC.

ii) Google Android OS. This is the system that is specifically designed for tablets. Called the Android 3.0 a.k.a. Honeycomb the OS covers a spectrum of 80000 apps.

iii) Microsoft Windows 7. This is a time tested OS from Microsoft who have been in the field much longer than others. It is used to power the more costly tablets.

Choose an OS which has a large line up of applications and will last for some years and not become obsolete soon.

b) Screen Size. The next point to consider while purchasing a tablet is the size of the screen. The screen sizes range from 4inches to 12 inches. It is advisable to go in for a screen size of 7-10 inches. A small screen size will make it difficult to enjoy web browsing and watch video’s while a larger screen will affect portability. Some of the screen sizes available are

i) I Pad from 2 to 9.7 inches

ii) Android from 3 -10.1 inches

iii) Dell streak and Black berry which come in a size of 7 inches

c) Processor. This is an important aspect of a tablet and refers to the speed with which your tablet operates. You don’t want a slow processor and it is preferred to have a processor of at least 1GHz. Some of the more easily available processors in the market are as follows

i) Intel Atom. This powers the cheaper models and obviously the price of tablets with this processor are the cheapest.

ii) Intel Core-I . this is a built in OS and powers the costlier tablets

iii) Arm based CPU’s. The Apple A 4 and NVIDIA Tegra are the processors under this category

d) Connectivity. This is now one of the most important points governing your selection of a tablet. Insure that the tablet has Wi- Fi, Bluetooth, and GPS etc. Make it a point to check that the tablet at least is compatible with Wi-Fi and 3G, otherwise it will be a waste of hard earned money

e) Built in Cameras. These are a modern requirement and most tablets will have dual cameras. I Pad has 2 cameras and so do the Android 3.0. The importance of these cameras which face the user is a help when doing video calling and talking when you use Google talk and Skype systems. The rear camera can be used as a mobile to take pictures and shoot videos. But a check of what cameras a tablet has will be a requirement. Bear in mind that most cameras are capable of taking 720p HD shots.

f) Interface. This refers to the screen of the tablet. Most tablets will have a feather touch screen, but tablets with multitouch are available, which allow you to action 3 or more touch simultaneously.

g) Storage capacity. Storage space has some importance in case your work needs to be saved. A tablet with a small storage capacity may not suit a lot of people. Generally a 16 GB space should serve the purpose. Also consider whether your tablet has a slot for a micro SD card. This can help enhance your storage capacity of your tablet.

h) Ports. You don’t want a tablet that has no ports. Buy a tablet with at least one USB port, one HDMI port and a slot for a micro SD card.

i) Battery. This is an important part of your selection of a tablet and concerns the life of the battery after it id fully charged. The I Pad advertises a 10 hour battery life, but you will have to check up the original manual with regard to battery life.

j) Cost. This is the last and in many ways the most important part of buying tablet. You will have to budget yourself and select a tablet in the price range that you can afford. The prices vary every day and many stores will offer you discounts. Keep your eyes open and do proper research so that you can buy the best available tablet .

Once you follow the above golden rules you cannot go wrong in buying a tablet and treasuring it at least for a couple of years.
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