Asus EeePad Transformer Review: The Best Of The Ipad Alternatives?
The iPad came out a few years ago and has proven to be one of the most intriguing portable computer concepts available today. Apple invented the iPad but the slate, tablet, or other iPad alternatives, actually perform just as well, if not better- and run on more than just apple mac operating systems. These alternatives are every bit as functional (if not more) than the iPad but the price is often MUCH less.
One such alternative that is making waves due to its incredible comparable features and unique transformability using a keyboard docking station is the Asus Eeepad Transformer. The 10.1 inch screen Transformer contains a powerful Android 3.0 Honeycomb core with a NVIDIA Tegra 2 chipset. The tablet can be easily converted into a virtual notebook pc/laptop in function and feel thanks to an ingenious and well designed removable keyboard, which also contains an additional battery to extend the devices mobile use. Amazon UK are currently doing a special deal on this great bit of kit, including free delivery. Click here for more details
Quick Product Specs
The 1 Ghz dual core NVIDIA Tegra2 ARM processor is more powerful than most netbook computers processing core! Packing a NVIDIA GeForce graphics card, gyroscope, a compass, fully functional GPS integrated, and a choice of 16 or 32 GB of storage space (and an SD memory slot to expand even further)! (See Full Specs)
As the name suggests- this table pc is two things in one. First and foremost it’s a “slate PC” but when you attach the accompanying keyboard the slate becomes the monitor end of essentially a notebook.
You can use it as a tablet with touch screen, or you can attach the proprietary external keyboard and use it like any note book. (it even appears to be a notebook computer when closed-together).
The slate comes pre-loaded with a bunch of proprietary ASUS apps of which a few were impressive- a few were ok and a few would probably never be used by the average consumer. Much like the iPad app store, ASUS has created its own app store and pre-loaded the Transformer with it (like apples does with the apps store/itunes).
This app store tailors to the UK specifically and the app store has a very scarce selection of useful apps. The Android Market, luckily- is available and accessible through the device which gives it much more potential. Apps are to many the life blood of their slate pc’s, it’s like the plug-ins commonly found in browsers like firefox or IE, and adds functionality and value to the core unit.
The docking station/keyboard and slate are collectively so light that you never have to make a choice between carrying one or both with you- however you can easily stow away the docking/keyboard station when space and privacy are needed. (fits easily into a backpack or purse).
This is a great feature for those who want to use a real keyboard with their iPad alternatives but want the convenience of one component, yet still have the portability of a tablet PC.
The rear of the slate has a furnished, astounding 5 mega pixel camera, for everyday recording and picture taking, while the front of the unit has a 1.2 mega pixel camera specifically designed for video conferencing.
It felt very comfortable to look at and very clear and inviting. The keyboard responded without a hitch, both the on board keyboard and the external (standard) keyboard.
The unit’s hardware is built with comfort and a feeling of exciting innovation at it’s core.
With a native resolution of 1280 x 800 pixels the screen appears very bright and vibrant, but not over saturated to the point of being difficult to view. This LED backlit screen is equipped to play full 1080p HD video as well! The screen was so crystal clear, and the unit so beautiful- you will have an emotional response just holding it while playing a movie, animation, or even a website. The screen uses “gorilla glass” which is scratch resistant and shatter proof protective glass.
The battery life clocks in at just under 8 hours if the slate is stand alone (no keyboard dock)- if the slate is docked to the keyboard it can go as long as a reported 16 hours (the on board keyboard uses up more battery juice than the external keyboard and the dock contains another battery which can be used for the keyboard and to supplement-extend or charge the pad’s on-board battery).
When compared to the iPad and other iPad alternatives, the Transformer was sleeker, and rich to the touch. It showed no hints of freezing up or latency when field testing its 5 home screens, the powerful web browser, and the many available desktop widgets. Overall this computer really gives the iPad a run for their money!
The EeePad Transformer becomes available on April 6, 2011 at a retail (approximation) price of £379 for the slate pc component only, and £429 for both the Transformer slate PC and the docking station/keyboard component together (bundled).
Click here to get the latest price on this great bit of kit, including free delivery.
Overall this is, amongst it’s competition, one of the best we’ve seen for the price, value, and convenience. This unit is innovative, powerful, and incredibly beautiful to look at, nice to the touch, and an overall outstanding deal!
Tagged: android tablet, android tablet pc, Asus Eeepad transformer, featured, ipad alternatives, Tablet PC
If you are looking for an ipad alternative that has all of their iconic tablet’s features with a more reasonable price tag, you could do worse than check out the Archos 10.1. With its technological improvements that make it even better than the last release, this slim mobile device deserves a closer look. Read on below for some highlights of a few key areas that will help you to compare it as an alternative to the ipad. You can purchase the Archos 10.1 here saving over £60 with free delivery.
Quick Product Specs
10.1 inch Screen, Android 2.2, 1024×600 1GHZ, 16GB, mini HDMI. (See full Specs)
At just 15mm thick, this ipad alternative still gives you a fairly large, 10.1 inch screen with a pixel resolution of 1024 x 600. This makes the quality of movies that you want look good and pictures are crisp and fairly sharp.
The number of ports that are included with this tablet make it very convenient to use. A standard USB port and a mini USB are both included. A mini HDMI port comes in handy if you want to be able to use an external display. With almost 8 hours of playing time on the battery, you will find the rear foldout stand to be a convenient feature when you are watching a movie.
Although the webcam has a low resolution, it is more than adequate enough for web chats. The solid state drive already includes 16 GBs of storage and the micro SD card allows you to expand it to meet your needs.
Rather than using the traditional 4 button navigation system like many other ipad alternatives, the Archos 10.1 uses a sensitive and highly responsive touch screen. With Bluetooth 2.1 supported, web browsing is quick and seamless. Simply pinching the screen will enable you to quickly zoom in and out.
The 802.1 wi fi that is built into this slim model allows pages to load up quickly without hanging. This is the fastest in wireless technology so that you can always be connected and synced with your smart phones and other devices.
Although the memory in this ipad alternative is limited, you will probably not notice due to the ARM Cortex processor. This processor allows for a smooth and seamless web experience. If you are the type of computer user who likes to have a number of tabs open, you will enjoy the minimal risk of having the browser crash on you.
You will find that the highly glossy surface of the screen reflects light. This can make working with this tablet difficult difficult when you are using it in outdoor conditions.
You will not find any support for 3G web browsing with this ipad alternative. When browsing the web, you will also notice a lack of support for videos that are streamed into websites. In order to watch videos on websites such as youtube, you will need to download a specific app to do so properly on this ipad alternative.
Currently, you can access the Android Market by way of downloading an app on the Archos online market. However we feel that this should be by default.
The Archos 10.1 has been designed to give you access to the internet in a lightweight yet very attractive package. Compatible with all of the latest in smart phones and Bluetootch technology, you will not find yourself dreading the fact that you must carry this tablet around. It is lightweight and designed to be eye catching yet practical.
This handy little powerhouse of an ipad alternative offers you a rich online experience that rivals some of the more well known tablet computers. Though it does not come with Android Market technology as standard, you can easily download an Archos app that is free and gives you complete access to all of what the Google market has to offer.
When you want internet access anywhere, simply pull out your smart phone and pair the devices via Bluetooth or a usb cord and you will be set up to hop online any time that you need or want to do so.
The Archos 10.1 manufacturers have taken a perfectly adequate ipad alternative and raised the bar with the release of this updated version. It is a slim version that allows you to do everything that you want to do on an ipad with style and grace for a lot less money.
With its sleek and lightweight design and impressive touch screen, you will find the Archos 10.1 an impressive ipad alternative.
If you are looking for a highly attractive and fully loaded ipad alternative that you will be proud of, the Archos 10.1 is your machine.
Get the Archos 10.1 here > £236.62 from Amazon.co.uk including Free Delivery.
Tagged: archos 10.1, featured, ipad alternatives, samsung ipad, Tablet PC
The iPad has quickly become one of the best selling technology gadgets in recent history. The device dominates the tablet pc market, but there are other companies that are releasing just as good or even better tablets than the iPad. Some of the offerings are very promising, while others lack the power and style that the iPad delivers. One ipad alternative that is standing out from the crowd and proving to be one of the best ipad alternatives on the market is the Zoostorm SL8. This device from a UK company, has an exceptional screen that has crisp video playback. The construction is also very durable, and the connectivity is among the best in the field. While it is tough to replicate the success of the iPad, at £499.99 the Zoostorm SL8 is making a nice effort. Buy the Zoostorm SL8.
Quick Product Specs
Intel® Atom N450 1.66Ghz Processor, Genuine Windows® 7 Professiona, Mini HDMI x 1, USB x 2, 32GB SSD Storage Drive, 2GB DDR2 667Mhz Memory (See Full Specs)
The screen size and resolution is the biggest positive with the Zoostorm SL8. Web pages load quickly and they are displayed in brilliant colors. This is a major plus for users that are going to spend the majority of their time surfing the Internet. Video playback on the large screen is also outstanding. Both regular definition and high definition movies worked well. This bodes well for users wanting one of the ipad alternatives that offers a true multimedia package. Another positive is the durability of the device. The high quality construction is evident throughout, and it seems that the SL8 would hold up to the rigors of multiple users and mobility.
The only negative with the screen on the SL8 is how quickly and easily it picks up fingerprints and smudges. Some of the other ipad alternatives have specially coated screens that keep blemishes away. The screen can be cleaned very easily, but it does get annoying at times. The size of the tablet gives an excellent viewing area, but it does make the unit a little bit heavier than some of its competitors. Battery life is always a key factor when looking for a good tablet, and the SL8 boasts five continuous hours. It is not as good as some, but it is still a respectable number. The processor is not the fastest on the market, but the tablet will still perform with good speed.
In addition to the screen and the durability, the SL8 is designed to be very user friendly. At just 14mm thick, there are multiple usb ports, built in wireless networking, and the ability to use 3G connections with the proper SIM card or wireless service. The Windows 7 operating system makes the tablet very familiar for PC users to get up and running straight away. This makes navigation, software apps and storage very simple.
The SL8 competes as one of the best ipad alternatives because it is so user friendly. With the usb ports, external devices can easily be connected. There is also an HDMI output that would allow the tablet to be connected to an HDTV to enjoy movies or other media such as personal videos and photos and also the web on the big screen. The SL8 is extremely portable and has a very reliable wireless connection that makes surfing the Internet on the go very fast and simple.
We believe the Zoostorm SL8 is one of the best ipad alternatives on the market. The screen size, resolution and performace outmatch almost everything else on the market and gives users a truly exceptional multimedia experience. The 32gb hard drive provides enough space to store movies, pictures and music. As the Zoostorm SL8 is one of the few tablets that runs Winodws 7 as standard, the package has full compatability with Microsoft Office. This device packs a lot of features into a highly durable package and is an excellent gadget for any person to own. The model we reviewed was £499.99 from Amazon UK with free delivery.
Tagged: featured, ipad alternatives, Tablet PC, zoostorm, zoostorm sl8
A Real Ipad Alternative.
The Bottom Line
The Samsung Galaxy Tab is a real pound for pound mainstream challenger to the iPad and is a solid and respectable iPad alternative. There are large numbers of consumers globally who reject the typical and longstanding Apple ‘their way or the highway’ non compatible regard. The latest instance is Apple’s blatant disregard for Flash enabled websites, which is one of the cornerstones of today’s modern online experience. Therefore to fully appreciate the web and all of its content an Android device such as the Samsung Galaxy Tab, is the way to go. Ipad alternatives will come and go but with the long pedigree of a technological powerhouse which is Samsung, expect oodles of support, upgrades and quality accessories. It is without doubt the best 7-inch Android tablet the market has to offer so far. You can purchase the Samsung Galaxy Tab at the most competitive price here including free delivery.
Quick Product Specs
7inch TFT LCD, ARM Cortex A8 1GHZ, 16GB, 3G, BT 3.0 Android 2.2 (See Full Specs)
- Ultra portable thanks to the Tabs practical 7 inch (measured diagonally) screen size.
- Two cameras, one 1.3 megapixel front facing camera for video calls and snaps and a 3.2 mega pixel camera at the rear with a decent LED flash. You only get 1 rear camera with the Ipad.
- SIM card slot for mobile email, browsing and video streaming
- MicroSDHC slot for ramping up the Tabs storage to a respectable 32GB for additional photos, music and movies.
- Adobe Flash Support, which means you can view flash enabled websites like YouTube on the fly. The iPad does not support Flash.
- Has direct access to over 300,000 android apps on the Android market, where a whole host of games, eBook readers and practical daily apps can be downloaded instantly. At the time of publication there are still more free Android apps than priced ones.
- Bluetooth connectivity for wireless keyboards and mice. Also perfect for phone calls via a hands free headset.
- Has the ability to be a mobile hotspot where other devices linking to the tab can then access the internet.
- All plastic moulding lacks the solid aluminium feel of the iPad.
- Despite the manufacturers claim of 7 hours battery life, we managed to achieve 4 hours of continuous video playback, which leaves a little to be desired for a mobile device. With that said you can watch two feature length films back to back without a recharge. Battery life is a main gripe with most mobile devices, which the manufacturers are continuously improving upon.
I road tested the Samsung Galaxy Tab for a whole month and honestly could’nt put it down. It easily became the main multimedia device for work, rest and play. I installed Kindle and Epub on the Tab and read all my favourite publications on the one device.
My typical day started with the Galaxy Tab’s alarm waking me up, like the Galaxy S Smartphone it has handy customisable snooze settings, which I took full advantage of. I then checked the latest news with the SKY app and then the weather and train times. I then used it as a digital radio whilst I got ready for work.
Because of its handy size it was neatly put away in my holdall whilst I boarded my train and out again to entertain me on my journey. Because of its size I did not feel so self conscious of using it in a carriage full of commuters like I did using the iPad. I checked all my news, sports and entertainment feeds which I would of ordinarily done squinting into my Galaxy Smartphone, and the size felt ideal. The 1024 x 600 resolution is a god send for browsing the web and also you and a friend (well a close friend) can comfortably watch a movie or two whilst on holiday, in the car or in bed.
To boot there is the growing Android app market to fully appreciate this device. As iPad alternatives go the Galaxy Tab has 300,000 android apps and counting to fulfil every whim, most of which are free.
The look and feel of the Samsung Galaxy Tab is of a giant plastic Smartphone, which is not a bad thing. However comparing it to the iPads solid aluminium finish and the comparative price of the two devices, one would expect an attempt by Samsung’s fully capable design team.
Another gripe is the non standard USB connector. It seems that Samsung has forgotten the U in USB stands for universal and as such I would of expected to be able to pick up a standard microUSB lead and use it on the fly. This is a little party pooper for me as if you were to forget your special Samsung lead on your travels your pretty much up that creek if you need to connectivity.
Usability is excellent largely down to its ideal 7inch screen size. Although its smaller than the iPads screen, it just makes so much more sense for it to be 7-inches. You can grasp the thing in one hand which makes it so unobtrusive and discreet to you and those around you. Couple its size with the Dragon slaying support of Samsung and Google Android and you can be confidant of a steady stream of quality apps, support and upgradability.
Battery Life: In my testing the Galaxy Tab I managed to get 4 hours continuous use of the device, despite Samsung’s official line of claiming 7-hours continuous movie play, saying this I did have the brightness on max which is a obvious drain on battery use.
Multi tasking on the Galaxy Tab is a pretty smooth affair and the device was able to handle several apps open at the same time. As you may be aware the iPad suffers terribly from being able to multi task. The Samsung Galaxy Tab is a beast and as iPad alternatives go, you couldn’t go far wrong for picking up one of these bad boys. Purchase the Samsung Galaxy Tab at Amazon UK at the most competitive price including free delivery.
Tagged: featured, ipad alternatives, samsung ipad, Tablet PC
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