To Tablet or Not to Tablet? –

To Tablet or Not to Tablet?

Tech-Tip# 331 By Mark Tiongco - September 18, 2011

"…The key is to determine how much of a tablet PC’s utility would be beneficial for your personal or business purposes."

The Tablet PC cometh! In the last 24 months, we have seen a wave of major OEM manufacturers release tablet Tablet PCsPCs along with the highly popular Apple iPad 2! These next-generation mobile devices have no doubt helped with our digital lifestyle but several questions should be considered from its arrival: Is it going to replace my notebook/desktop computer? Should I drop the cash just to stay up-to-date with technology? What can I do with a tablet PC?

Is it going to replace my notebook computer/desktop computer?

Tablet PCs should be considered a complement and not a replacement to a traditional computer. Sure it offers more mobility and has similar features like wi-fi and a virtual keyboard but as a student, can you see yourself writing a dissertation or a semester paper on an iPad? Tablet PCsAs a business professional, an iPad can keep you organized, take important notes and help with face-to-face video conferencing but can you imagine doing all your business research and accounting on an iPad? Instances where extensive resources are required (such as a large screen) would be better left to a traditional computer. The key is to determine how much of a tablet PC’s utility would be beneficial for your personal or business purposes.

Should I drop the cash just to stay up to date with technology?

Tablet PCsWhile there is nothing wrong with staying current with technology, $300-$800+ dollars for a tablet PC would be difficult to justify without having done your due diligence. Otherwise, you’ve just invested heavily in a redundant email-social networking checker/ebook reader if you don’t do your homework on what a tablet PC can do for you. Many of the iPad’s apps are designed to keep people in touch with current events, their loved ones or their IT infrastructure. Examples include Dropbox for iPad, Tweetdeck, MarketDash, Friendly Facebook for iPad and CNN for iPad. If some of these programs are applicable to you or you absolutely rely on them to stay in touch with friends, business associates and clients, then a tablet PC might just be the thing to help increase your productivity.

What can I do with a tablet PC?

Tablet PCsTablet PCs have been around for at least the last 15-20 years. Before the arrival of the iPad, many ran on Windows and Windows XP Tablet Edition in environments such as construction, military and even in clinics to show and update patient information promptly. Tablet PCs now have the ability to reduce several annoying formalities of a traditional computer like the pesky (sometimes lengthy) boot and shutdown sequence and the having to restart for update installations. Thus tablet PCs enjoy instant-on startups and are relatively responsive since the operating systems that are engineered for tablet PCs like as iOS and Android run lean and don’t require too many system resources to start and operate. Tablet PCs are also more subtle for occasions where there isn’t always a power outlet or you’re forced to pack light. For example, if you’re on your way to the office and are on a 30 minute subway ride standing up, you can easily and quietly check your email, talk to business associates and edit business reports without having to find a seat or table.

Do your homework!

Tablet PCsIn this crazy ever-evolving world of tablet PCs, the iPad seems to reign supreme for now. The future of HP’s Touchpad seems dubious since the company is no longer supporting WebOS and has decided to spin off its PC business. Blackberry’s Playbook was a disaster considering it’s having trouble effectively competing with the iPad and Motorola’s Xoom tablet PC failed to deliver solid competition due to an overly-complex operating system (Honeycomb). So if you’re leaning towards a certain brand or model, try out a demo or floor model at your local retailer and make an informed decision.

The holiday shopping season is around the corner and if you monitor the tech news, you might be able to snag a good deal on a tablet PC. (like the HPTouchpad fire sale!) 

To Tablet or Not to Tablet?

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