Let’s face it. Some people just don’t like Apple. It doesn’t matter how sleek and shiny and pretty and…*drool*…sorry, sometimes I look at the iPad and I lose myself a bit.
So for those who still want a tablet computer, but don’t want an iPad, what is there to do? With a couple of new releases coming up, the wait for Microsoft and Android fanboys might be over. I hesitate to say “iPad Killer”, both because I dislike violent rhetoric and because I kept hearing “Halo killer” when Killzone came out, and we all know how that turned out.
Option: The HP Slate
I hesitate even more to use the term “iPad Killer” when referring to the HP Slate 500, officially announced, at long last, the other week. It seems clear that HP knows it won’t be able to compete directly with the iPad, as the marketing campaign pushes that this is a business-ready gadget, complete with business apps. The superior processing power and storage (1.86 GHz and 64GB standard) backs up those claims. This thing is definitely a beast, closer to being a small portable computer than a large iPod Touch (though the screen is about an inch smaller than the iPad’s at 8.9″). You’ll also get 1080p video capabilities, HDMI out, and a VGA front-facing and 3 megapixel rear camera. The downside? This bad boy costs $799. Ouch. I don’t know about you, but if I’m dropping $800 it ain’t gonna be on a tablet.
Option: Samsung Galaxy Tab
Android is all grown up now, and seems capable of taking on iOS and Windows. Enter the Android-powered Samsung Galaxy Tab. Purely based on price point, the Galaxy Tab is already an improvement over the HP Slate. It’s not a beast like the HP tablet, but $600 no-contract is an improvement as far as your bank account is concerned, and if you go with a Sprint contract, you can get that subsidized down to $400. The specs seem to match the iPad at first (1GHz processor, 32GB storage, WiFi/3G capabilities), but there are a few differences down the road. Firstly, this is a little guy: the Galaxy measures a palindromic 7.4″ by 4.7″, as compared to the iPad’s 9.7″…apply the Pythagorean Theorem and you’ll find it’s about an inch shorter diagonally. But some might find that the 0.83 pound weight and smaller size makes for easier handling on the go. The screen resolution falls a tad short as well, but the pixel density is higher. And, same as the HP Slate, the Galaxy has two cameras, where the iPad…how do I put this gently…it ain’t got shit.
Option: Be A Cheap Bastard
Kmart has announced that it will be selling a Sylvania 7-inch tablet, running Android 2.1, for $180. Buy that at your own risk, cheapskate.
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