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steve | Laptopsunder500bucks.com

About steve

steve has been a member since August 23rd 2011, and has created 6581 posts from scratch.

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Your Questions About Tablet Or Notebook

Mark asks…

Digital notebook/tablet tech help, 10 pnts?

I currently use a laptop and not very comfy with on-screen keyboards and touchscreen technology

But I was planning on buying the Samsung galaxy note 10. or the Asus Transformer infinity. But seems this android technology doesn’t support regular features like Dreamweaver, right? Are these good tablets for someone who has forever used Windows?

I want these tabs mainly for note-taking, quick scribbling? So I found this other option called digital notepads (DigiMemo or Cyberpad) or something. Are those good? What is the hard drive storage capacity? I found a link, but I dont think this is quite the thing? Here is the link, http://www.amazon.co.uk/product-reviews/B00264GKXO/ref=pr_all_summary_cm_cr_acr_txt?ie=UTF8&showViewpoints=1

Anyone has any idea/suggestions? Product names in particular? I am from the writing field so basically any software that allows me to write/scribble on the go would be great
@ Georgi, I realise that it is not a very coherent way of putting a question, especially from someone who claims to be from the writing field. But I am going to a techno fair in this evening hence the hurry. Thanks for answering.

steve answers:

It will never be a replacement for a laptop. However, I use it for school and it is amazing. I have a Asus Transformer Infinity and I had the exact same consideration. I was think about the note 10.1 as well. I played around with the note and I loved it. It’s amazing. Even though, it does lag sometimes even with its quad core processor, it is a nice tablet to work with. The TF700 or Asus Transformer infinity is also great for notes. You can buy a stylus if you want and mine came with a keyboard dock. It is fast, high resolution screen and it does everything I want it to do. Great for entertainment as well. I wanted something for notes in class, word processing, creating presentations, creating graphs, watching my 1080p movies and playing high quality games. The TF700 was definitely my choice. If you purely want a tablet for note taking, not entertainment and word processing, go for the Note 10.1. It’s pretty good. Otherwise, get the TF700 (btw, TF700 has jelly bean update available already and the note 10.1 doesn’t)

Betty asks…

What is the difference between an IPad, Netbook, Tablet, Notebook, EReader computers?

I guess I am more technically challenged than I imagined. Can someone please explain what each of these are and how they differ from each other.

steve answers:

Netbook = small computer, low power, no cd/dvd drive, normally runs android, linux, or lightweight version of windows. Normally has a screen 10 inches or less in size

notebook and laptop are the same. Basically they are just computers that have a built in screen, mouse, keyboard and speakers all in one device. Normally the screen is 10 inches to 18 inches

tablet is a generic term for a (normally) touch screen computer without a physical keyboard nor mouse. Generally they are designed to be less powerful but have a longer battery life. Generally they have less than 10 inch screens

EReader is a type of tablet designed to read e-books

iPad is a type of tablet that Apple made to do light-weight computer usage (web browsing, watching videos, small apps).

Sandra asks…

Tablet, Phablet, or Netbook/Notebook?

I currently own a Samsung Galaxy S3 Mini, as well as a Desktop PC that I use for design work. I want to get something inbetween to “bridge the gap” when I’m away from my PC. I can either

A) Keep my S3 Mini and get a Tablet (eg. Google Nexus 7)
B) Sell my S3 Mini and get a Phablet (eg. Galaxy Note 2 or 3)
C) Keep the S3 Mini and save up a bit for a Netbook/Notebook

Which one would you recommend?

steve answers:

A Phablet consumes more power which would mean you’d have to charge a lot, a notebook is worth considering however which notebook would you pick? I ask this because some tablets are now more powerful than notebooks and a lot easier to carry around so you might want to consider it too. If i were you i’d get a tablet. So in my opinion, the first option seems the best among the three. Hope this helps :)

William asks…

does anybody kno how much a tablet notebook computer cost?

steve answers:

Yeah, a tablet can cost anywhere from $1500 to $5,000 depending on what you want in it.

Susan asks…

Notebook vs Tablet (ipad etc) explanation?

Hi everyone

So my HP laptop’s basically on it’s way out (had its day!), so i’m looking to go ahead and get a new computer for personal use. I guess I just do a bit of everyday net surfing, facebook, youtube, hotmail, etc etc.

My question is – I’m well aware of what’s around now with notebooks and tablets (like ipad, samsung galaxy, etc), but is there much difference with what I can do? What I mean is, is a tablet essentially just a notebook with a touch screen, smaller, cooler, and without a keyboard? Would it have a built-in wireless router thing to pick up my household ADSL internet signal etc?

I’m after some info here on whether buying a cool-looking tablet which I’d love to have is going to be just like having a notebook kind of scenario.


steve answers:

@Corndog11, I always find this a very tough question to answer. It all depends on your needs and comfort.

You have mentioned that your needs are very basic: browsing, videos and may be gaming (though you haven’t mentioned that). For these requirements, a Tablet might be a better option than a notebook as it is more mobile.

When it comes to internet connection, most of them come with WiFi support, USB dongle support (for your usb internet data cards). Very few of them come with Ethernet ports (I am not sure if it is popular in your country).

A tablet is a like a notebook in some ways. It is come from the need for people to have a mobile device like the smart phone but with better computing power, easier input and better screen resoluton. There are tablets that allow a keyword to be connected if you want a more laptop like experience. These keyboards may not be as convenient as a laptop’s keyboard because of their smaller size. If you have to do a lot of typing (like typing many pages of documents everyday), then a laptop would be better.

But from what you have mentioned as your requirements, I think a Tablet would be a better choice.

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Your Questions About Gucci Sunglasses

Sandy asks…

What can i get my girlfriend a present for her Birthday ?

What can i get her a present for her birthday ? Shes turning 16 2moro, and i alreayd bought her a jewlerry heartshaped necklace last year, and gucci sunglasses the year before that , and what can i buy her this year ? My friend told me to go and buy her some roses and give them to her at 12 ? but i dunno, what should i do ?

steve answers:

16 is a big deal. I would do the roses thing and maybe another piece of jewelry?? Like a claddah ring or something like that?

I actually just told this to someone else, but it could be a good idea for you too. With the roses/jewelry, you could do something cool/free and just name land after the two of you….that could be really awesome and its different…fits with a big birthday i think. Http://www.ownapieceofamerica.us/

Helen asks…

Would you consider me a douchebag for wearing 2 pairs of LV sunglasses at a time?

So I have 5 pairs of Louis Vuitton sunglasses and 2 pairs of Gucci sunglasses.. I always have a pair on, inside or out, and a pair on the neck of my shrt., people say that guys who always wear $1000 sunglasses like mine are douchebags but I just think it’s fashion.. I’m 14 btw

steve answers:

Wearing glasses indoors makes you a douchebag. Wearing two pairs of glasses indoors makes you a mega douche.

Joseph asks…

What is your favorite more on the expensive side, clothing brand?

dont say like hot topic and aeropostale because those are MALL stores. i’m looking for stuff like 7 jeans( LUV THEM) project e polos gucci sunglasses, louis vuitton jewelery, stuff like that !

steve answers:

Clothes: collette dinnigan, marc jacobs, bcbg, paul & joe
bags: louis vuitton, gucci, chanel, balenciaga
shoes: gucci, dior, salvatore ferragamo
watches: franck muller, cartier, jacob & co
cant get enough of those things =)

Daniel asks…

How young is too young to own designer items?

how young do u think is too young to own expinsive item. im wondering this because im always questioned why i have a movado watch or why i have gucci sunglasses.

steve answers:

To me and this is just MY opinion. It depends. It depends on who is buying. Are you responsible enough? And what it is used for? Other than that, you can never be 2 young. My little sister is 10 and everything she owns is designer.

William asks…

what do you think of these Gucci sunglasses?

i am over Ray-Ban, so i am thinking about buying these Gucci sunglasses


do you like them. There are for girls, but because they are simple can a boy wear them.

They have black and blue lenses, which one is darker. because the black is only half the lens?

steve answers:

They’re nothing special..
They’re nice, but not worth it.

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Your Questions About Acer

Linda asks…

Where can I get the microphone software for an acer laptop?

My friend recently, accidentally deleted his microphone software on his acer laptop. How can he get the software back?

steve answers:

I’m not aware of any microphone which requires software, you may want to try the Acer website.

Donna asks…

How to I turn on bluetooth on my acer aspire 5738z?

My acer laptop has the icon on keyboard but not able to use bluetooth?

steve answers:



Michael asks…

How do I reset my Acer laptop to when it was still in the box?

I want to return my Acer laptop, but I first need to reset it so that it was like it has never been used before.

I do not have any disks and I cannot format the hard drive.

Does anyone know how?


steve answers:

On an Acer laptop the trick is to hold down the alt key and repeatedly press f10 while booting, which will bring up the utility to reimage your disk to the factory default. You can often also do this with an Acer utility named Erecovery from windows.

Nancy asks…

Acer Repair – Acer Aspire 5755G?

My 5755G has a fan issue
First the fan was very noisy then it went quiet but ran hot
I had someone order a new fan and fit it
They told me that they couldn’t fit the fan as it was a sealed unit
But they said they removed a small build up of dog hair from the fan

I got that back now but the laptop still runs hot
Which worries me with it being an expensive laptop

So what would be the best place to have it repaired
I find it hard to trust sending it away to Acer in the mail

Are they good with repairs, does it take them long , will they replace the laptop if it gets lost in the post
Will they take it now its been opened and how are their prices


steve answers:

Acer is Okay, Hey, that is a great question, welcome to answers, I hope this information helps.
Acer is here to help!
To get the most from your Acer product, select from our wide range of service options

Post the brand and complete model number and installed operating system when asking a question to get the best help. You need to post full details of the problem and what you want to do.





I am dedicated to providing you with an excellent experience. I am here to answer your questions and resolve any problems you may have. We promise to persevere in finding a successful resolution. You are my focus. Resolving whatever issues that brought you to Yahoo Answers is our mission.
Hey, If the above information helped or you appreciate the effort, volt best answer…

Source(s): CompTIA A+ Certified Computer Professional

Maria asks…

Are Acer computers any good?

I need a computer fast. Walmart has an 19″ Acer computer with Microsoft Office includied for 498. Should I buy?

steve answers:

Acer has been around for quite some time now and must be doing something right. Acer is a Taiwanese multinational electronics manufacturer. It owns the largest franchised computer retail chain in Taiwan, Acerland. Acer’s product lineup includes desktop and mobile PCs (laptops),as well as PDAs, servers and storage, displays, peripherals, and e-business solutions for business, government, education, and home users.[1] They are sold worldwide.

On August 27, 2007, Acer announced it had signed a definitive agreement to acquire the struggling Gateway computer company. Gateway also announced that it has signed a definitive agreement to sell its Professional business segment, including the Company’s Nashville-based configuration center, to MPC Corporation (an American computer-hardware company based in Nampa, Idaho, USA, best known for providing desktops, notebooks, servers and services to customers in the federal, state and local government, education, small and medium business, and consumer markets [2]).

If regulatory approval of the sale is granted, this would effectively put Acer in the number 3 PC sales position in the US behind Hewlett Packard/Compaq (currently #1) and Dell Corporation (#2).

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Your Questions About 15.6 Laptop Bag

Linda asks…

what kind of bags do girls carry in college? northface?

High school girls usually have totes or handbags. I would want a handbag/tote, but its college!!!

Do a lot of college girls carry bookbags? I have a regular jansport, but then I’ll have to buy a laptop messenger bag which I really don’t like. I have a dell Inspiron15 (15.6 widescreen) laptop I need to protect. I was looking at the northface recon which has a laptop protector built in. It saids for laptops up to 15″, but will my Dell laptop fit??

And what do you think of me, a petite girl, carrying a bulky northface bookbag?
Is college like high school where theres a trend that people follow?

steve answers:

College is pretty easy going as far as people following trends. Each person really has their own thing going on.
Just get a backpack that fits your petite frame, and that will keep your books and laptop dry.
At my school there are girls with backpacks ranging from the most basic all black, to girls with cartoons on their backpacks and backpacks covered in patches, pins etc.
Personally, being a girl that is the same size I was in 5th grade, I just go for Hello Kitty Back packs because it looks cute on me. If you go this route make sure your clothes look mature- you do not want to look like a 3 year old, lol =)
Good luck with college this year, it is great and you will enjoy it so much!

Sandra asks…

Gaming laptop how good are these specs?

Xplorer X6-9500 Notebook
NTBKX69500, http://www.cyberpowersystem.co.uk/system/Xplorer_X6-9500_Notebook/
*BASE_PRICE: [+954]
ADAPTER: Universal AC-DC Adapter
BAGS: Free Deluxe Carrying Bag for 15.6 Inch Notebook
BATTERY: 9 cells Smart Lithium-Ion battery pack, 48.84WH
BLUETOOTH: Built-in Bluetooth
CD: 8X DVD±R/RW/4X + DL Super-Multi Drive
CPU: Intel® Core™ i7-2670QM Mobile Processor 2.20 GHz 6M Intel Smart Cache, Max Turbo Freq. 3.10 GHz
FLASHMEDIA: Built-In 4in1 Media Reader
FREEBIE_OS1: Free Microsoft® Office® 2010 STARTER EDITION (Reduced-Functionality versions of Word and Excel that include advertising)
HDD: 64 GB Kingston V100 2.5 inch SATA Gaming MLC Solid State Disk
HDMI: Built-in HDMI Port
KEYBOARD: Built-in US Keyboard
MEMORY: 8GB (4GBx2) DDR3-1333 SODIMM Memory (Corsair Value Select or Major Brand)
MOTHERBOARD: Intel HM67 Express Chipset Mainboard
NETWORK: Built-in 100/1000 Mbps LAN Network
NOTEBOOK: MSI MS-16F2 Notebook 15.6” FHD LED-Backlit 1920×1080 Display w/ Built-in 2.0MP Webcam, HDMI Port, Li-Ion Battery, & Universal AC Adapter
NOTEBOOK_COVER: Xplorer X6 Notebook Cover
OS: Microsoft® Windows® 7 Home Premium (64-bit Edition)
RAID: Non-RAID Storage
SOFT1: McAfee AntiVirus Plus 2011 OEM [+7]
UPS: None
USB: Built-in 2x USB2.0 Ports + 2x USB3.0 Ports
WEBCAM1: Built-in HD 1280×720 Webcam
WNC: Killer Wireless-N 1103 802.11 a/b/g/n WiFi Card [+19]
WTV: None
_PRICE: (+980)
_view_: d

And I no desktops are better but this suits my needs

steve answers:

Those specs are pretty decent for general gaming use. The fact that you chose an SSD, 8GB RAM and a high-end GPU is all good. Some games (Metro 2033 would be one), would not run on Max settings quite as smooth as on high, but for the majority, all games should run fine on Max Settings.

I would say this is a good starting setup. Obviously upgrading to the Extreme Edition processor line would be nice, as would 16GB, but not necessary. The GPU has a great rating for almost all games, and your other specs are quite nice as well. I would really consider upping the RAM to 16GB, though. That processor can chew threw RAM like you wouldn’t believe (Especially if you ever plan on doing any rendering or converting of any sort).

For what you will probably be using this for, I would say it is a great setup!

Jenny asks…

Which Laptop for gaming?

Which Laptop for gaming?
After searching for online for a gaming laptop for a decent price, I heard Asus makes good laptops. Going to be using mainly for gaming and homework. My budget is 1500$. Getting to the point, I’m stuck between:

G53JW-XT1 $1399.97
500GB Hard Drive 7200 rpm
6GB RAM DDR3 (Max 8GB)

G53JW-A1 $1449.97
750GB 7200rpm
NVIDIA Geforce GTX 460M
6GB RAM DDR3 (max 16GB)

Both are 15.6“. The A1 comes with a bag and mouse, but only had 1 feedback. People liked the XT1. Would like to hear recommendations/feedback on either one.
Should have mentioned that the A1 is 1.5GB RAM video card.
My family has an iMac, Macbook, iPad, 2 iPhones, and an iTouch. We’re not far from the complete collection. The last thing I want is a Mac.

steve answers:

It should be pretty much dead even, those two. The only relevant metric that’s different is the hard drive size. 50 bucks for 250 GB is rather much, in my opinion. The A1 looks to be an upgrade to the motherboard or something similar, as it has a higher maximum rating for system RAM.

I think the Republic of Gamers laptops are excellent so I think the G53JW is a good choice, no matter what specific model of that series you choose.

Betty asks…

Is this laptop practical?!? Help?

Ok, I want a laptop that I can create videos using sony vegas and adobe aftereffects, play world of warcraft, Counterstrike, do school work and watch movies. My budget is $800 but Id rather spend 700-750 on the laptop so I can buy a mouse and bag with leftover money.

Im looking at this for $724 with free shipping, is it good? is there better for less?
My System Details :
SYSTEM COLOR Midnight Blue edit
PROCESSOR Intel® Pentium™ Dual Core T4200 (2.0GHz/800Mhz FSB/1MB cache) edit
OPERATING SYSTEM Genuine Windows Vista® Home Premium Edition, 32-bit SP1 edit
OFFICE SOFTWARE Microsoft Works edit
WARRANTY AND SERVICE 1 Yr Ltd Warranty, On-site Service, and 1 Yr Tech Support edit
HD DISPLAY 15.6” High Definition (720p) LED Display with TrueLife™ and Camera edit
MEMORY 4GB Shared Dual Channel DDR2 at 800MHz edit
HARD DRIVE Size: 320GB SATA Hard Drive (5400RPM) edit
VIDEO CARD Intel Graphics Media Accelerator 4500MHD edit
INTERNAL OPTICAL DRIVE 8X Slot Load Super Multi (DL DVD+/-R Drive + RAM support) edit
WIRELESS CARDS Dell Wireless 1397 802.11g Half Mini-Card edit
BATTERY OPTIONS 56 Whr Lithium Ion Battery (6 cell) edit
SOUND OPTIONS Soundblaster X-Fi Hi Def Audio – Software Enabled edit
Thanks and 10 pts for best answer
KEYBOARD Standard Keyboard

steve answers:

Enh its ok

go to tigerdirect.com

Laura asks…

I’m wanting to buy a laptop and I need some tips!:)?

Hi, I want to buy a brand new acer laptop for $400.00
Does this looks good?
Condition: New: A brand-new, unused, unopened, undamaged item in its original packaging (where packaging is applicable). Packaging should be the same as what is found in a retail store, unless the item is handmade or was packaged by the manufacturer in non-retail packaging, such as an unprinted box or plastic bag. See the seller’s listing for full details. See all condition definitions- opens in a new window or tab… Read moreabout the condition Brand: Acer
Processor Type: AMD Athlon 64 X2 Type: Laptop/Notebook
Processor Speed: 1.6 GHz Screen Size: 15.6 inches
Processor Configuration: Dual Core Operating System: Windows 7 Home Premium 64 Bit
Memory (RAM): 3 GB Primary Drive: DVD+/-RW
Hard Drive Capacity: 320 GB

steve answers:

Good laptop


Also check out at Ebay there are really good deals going

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Your Questions About Archos 101

James asks…

what tablet is the best to buy?

Im looking to buy a tablet. NOT A IPAD i know there cool but its just a big iphone so theres no point in it. The tablet im looking for i dont really care what brand but it MUST video chat!!! preferably skype. If you know about any or have one please let me know so i can check it out. thanks:)
and if u know prices please tell me. i want to buy asap

steve answers:

The best Android tablet depends on your needs…

If high-end video recording is important to you, consider the LG G-Slate which can record at 1080p.

For overall value: The ASUS Eee Transformer (TF101) is extremely feature rich for under $400: Android 3.1, 10.1 inch 1280×800 IPS (like iPad, but bigger and higher resolution) display, up to 9 hours of battery life (16 hours if optional dock added), optional ability to dock with keyboard, 1 GHz Tegra 250 ARM CPU with 1 GB RAM, good array of ports (mini HDMI, SD, micro SD), preloaded Polaris Office 3.0 for editing documents (.doc), spreadsheets (.xls) and presentation (.ppt) files. Note, though, no 3G (however people report success in tethering it to smart phones).

Galaxy Tab 10.1 (0.336 inches) is the thinnest Android tablet, and at 1.25 lbs it’s also the lightest of the big-screen (greater than 9 inch) tablets.

The Motorola Xoom is heavier and thicker than both the iPad or Galaxy Tab, the Xoom’s advantage is that it has HDMI out and micro USB ports. It also has a 5MP rear camera compared to Tab’s 3MP and iPad’s lousy 0.7MP.

Finally, if cellular service is important, check with your favorite carrier. At the moment, here’s the breakdown for non-iPad tablets:

Verizon:Galaxy Tab 10.1, Xoom, and Galaxy Tab
T-Mobile:G-Slate, Streak 7, and Galaxy Tab
Sprint:Galaxy Tab
AT&T:Galaxy Tab
None:TouchPad, Thrive, Eee Pad TF101, Iconia Tab A500, Archos 101, Archos 70, and NOOK Color

These non-iPad tablets have front-facing video cameras for video chat: PlayBook, Slate 500, G-Slate, Xoom, TouchPad, Thrive, Streak 7, Eee Pad Transformer, Iconia Tab A500, Galaxy Tab, Archos 101, and Archos 70. The PlayBook can do 1080p recording from the front camera; rest are VGA/Webcam quality.

Sandy asks…

xbox not seeing/showing all videos?

My xbox is suddenly not recognizing all the videos in my drive. I can still see the main folder as usual, but now if I have 20 videos in the folder it may only show me 15. Any new ones are taking days to show up on my xbox, despite any reboots (of either my computer or xbox). Also, it won’t play all of my mp4 files anymore. I can see them in the folder on my xbox but it says they’re not supported. It plays *some* mp4 files, but not all. I don’t see any difference between one or the other.

Any idea how to fix these issues? It just changed suddenly a week or so ago. I’ve opened Windows Media Player on my computer and done an “apply media info changes” but it doesn’t appear to make any difference when I turn on my xbox.

I’m not sure if I’m explaining this very well but hopefully it makes sense and hopefully someone can help me! I’m pretty tech illiterate, apparently! ;)


steve answers:

I am having exact same problem, I did same thing, even reinstalled “optional media update” to xbox. Didn’t work for me but you may want to delete that particular update on you’re console if got haven’t done so already. You can download it again in game market place under “games” then go to the letter “o”. But it didn’t work for me, I am running vista with wmp11. Would love to be able to stream my mp4 and 3g2 files again, only way I can do so is thru a mobile device, Samsung Galaxy S2 Android Application “imediashare”, (best application I’ve ever used). This will allow you to stream content from your phone to your television thru your xbox, no wires or cables or transferring at all. I have no need for a pc except for storage which is went I want this Archos 80 our Archos 101 tablet which has 250 GB and runs on honeycomb. Hope someone knows a fix to this otherwise only business I’ll be doing with Microsoft is xbox and saying goodbye p.c, goodbye windows!

Carol asks…

I’d like some advice on what ebook I should get?

So I would like to buy an ebook of some kind. I’ve decided that I would like to get either the nook color from barnes and noble or purchase some kind of tablet like an ipad (more specifically the ipad 2) and use the ibook app on it. Does anyone have both that could give me some insight? Price isn’t a problem even though the prices are both very different. I’ve still got to think about it myself, but I haven’t had an ebook before so I’m looking for some experience from others.

steve answers:

Minor terminology matter: An ‘ebook’ is read on an electronic book reader (‘ereader’).

First decide on your priority: long-run reading or apps (games, web browsing, etc)?

There simply is no ereader that excels at both currently. For long-run reading, the E Ink ereaders (Kindle 3, Nook Touch, Kobo Touch, Sony Reader, etc) are ideal because of their paper-like displays. LCD ereaders have back-lit displays and offer a computer-monitor-like reading experience. For apps, the LCD ereaders (or tablets) are better. E Ink technology does not offer color and is not fast enough for video.

Source: http://www.howtodecide.com/ereader/

For LCD ereaders, the Nook Color is basically a budget tablet. It’s great out of the box or can be rooted fairly easily to allow running of Android apps. An iPad 2 is at least double the price but has a larger screen and many more apps. Unlike the Nook Color, iPads can be bought with 3G for Internet access where cell signals are available. If price is no object, go for the iPad 2 over the Nook Color, or consider one of the many tablet competitors to the iPad.

Here’s a list of tablets organized per operating system:

[Apple iOS] iPad 2
[Android 3.2] Xoom
[Android 3.1] Thrive, Eee Pad Transformer, and Iconia Tab A500
[Android 3.0] G-Slate and Galaxy Tab 10.1
[Android 2.2] Streak 7, Galaxy Tab, Archos 101, Archos 70, and NOOK Color
[webOS] TouchPad
[BlackBerry Tablet OS] PlayBook
[Windows 7] Eee Slate and Slate 500

Of the tablets, the Eee Pad Transformer has outstanding specs for the money.

Source: http://www.howtodecide.com/tablet/

Joseph asks…

what are the best tablets?

they need to be in the the 500 dollar price range i was thinking about the blackberry playbook should i get that or an android?

steve answers:

Base configurations of these tablets can be bought for around $500 or less: Galaxy Tab 10.1, iPad 2, Xoom, TouchPad, Thrive, Streak 7, PlayBook, Eee Pad TF101, Iconia Tab A500, Galaxy Tab, Archos 101, Archos 70, and NOOK Color.

With its 7-inch display, the PlayBook will be more portable but show less information on the display at once than the higher-resolution ~10-inch display tablets.

If you want to record at 1080p, the PlayBook (or the more expensive LG G-Slate) is for you.

For overall value, consider the ASUS Eee Transformer (TF101) for under $400: Android 3.1, 10.1 inch 1280×800 IPS (like iPad, but bigger and higher resolution) display, up to 9 hours of battery life (16 hours if optional dock added), optional ability to dock with keyboard, 1 GHz Tegra 250 ARM CPU with 1 GB RAM, good array of ports (mini HDMI, SD, micro SD), preloaded Polaris Office 3.0 for editing documents (.doc), spreadsheets (.xls) and presentation (.ppt) files. Note, though, no 3G (however people report success in tethering it to smart phones).

And, for completeness and comparison even though you didn’t mention iPad, here’s BlackBerry PlayBook vs Apple iPad 2 (leader in tablet category):

BlackBerry PlayBook Advantages:

3 MP front camera (vs VGA), 5 MP rear camera (vs 0.7 MP), 1080p rear video (vs 720p), 1080p front video (vs VGA), micro HDMI & micro USB ports, Flash support, 0.9 lbs (vs 1.33 lbs)

iPad 2 Advantages:

Display: 9.7 inch, 1024×768 IPS LCD (vs 7 inch, 1024×600 LCD), 10.4hr battery life (vs 7hr batter life), huge apps market.

Another difference: PlayBook is available on Sprint; iPad, on AT&T and Verizon.

Laura asks…

Ipad2 or Android tablet?

i am going to buy a tablet to write notes on it at school. Which one has the best and fastest keyboard?

steve answers:

Typing notes: You’re going to want a real keyboard; typing via on-screen keyboards is only good for short notes or short messages. Get a tablet with Bluetooth that can be coupled with keyboard, or consider the ASUS Eee Transformer (TF101), which “transforms” into a laptop via a dock and keyboard.

Your school probably has great WiFi coverage, so you can probably save money by skipping cellular service. These tablets are WiFi-only or have WiFi-only versions: iPad 2, Eee Slate, Slate 500, TouchPad, Thrive, Eee Pad TF101, Iconia Tab A500, Archos 101, Archos 70, NOOK Color, and Kindle Fire.

IPad 2 Advantages:

IPads have a higher degree of fit-and-finish than the competition. Like iPhones vs other smart phones, iPods vs other MP3 players, or Macs vs PC’s, iPads are widely regarded as being more refined and polished than the competition. IPad also has a large and refined App Store (although Android Market is closing the gap).

IPad 2 Disadvantages:

1. No Flash.
2. No SD expansion; no HDMI port; no USB port.
3. ASUS Eee Transformer has a better display (10.1 inch, 1280×800, IPS vs 9.7 inch, 1024×768, IPS).
4. IPad’s camera resolution is a lousy 0.7 MP.
5. Expensive.

If you’d like an Android tablet with an even better display than the iPad 2, with a good array of ports (mini HDMI, SD, micro SD), with better cameras, at a lower price, and with a slick dock/keyboard option, choose the ASUS Eee Transformer (TF101).

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