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View Full Version : I can't afford the Ipad2, any other tablet recommendations?




phatjoe
Nov 22, 2011, 03:05 PM
Hello,

I know everything out there is 2nd rate to the ipad2, but I can't afford it right now. I'm also not interested in the original ipad...just seems dated.

I noticed that the going rate for the HP touchpad is about $180. Is it worth it at that price point of $180?

I just plan on using it for surfing the web, reading e-books, etc. Im just looking for something cheap to mess around with, play with it for a couple of months, and probably end up selling it you know how it is

Any other recommendations, besides the hp touchpad?? I'd consider a 7" screen as well, but hoping to spend under $300.

I know this forum is biased towards apple stuff, but you guys tend to very knowledgeable about other products as well.
Thanks,
P



Kauai
Nov 22, 2011, 03:17 PM
Definitely the Nook Tablet (http://www.barnesandnoble.com/p/nook-tablet-barnes-noble/1104687969). And then when ICS rom comes out, load that up and you'll have one awesome beast of a tablet for a good price.

Alternatively, look around on craigslist for a cheap 1st Gen. iPad, which IMHO if you don't care that it isn't new you'll love the most.

doboy
Nov 22, 2011, 03:45 PM
Hello,

I know everything out there is 2nd rate to the ipad2, but I can't afford it right now. I'm also not interested in the original ipad...just seems dated.

I noticed that the going rate for the HP touchpad is about $180. Is it worth it at that price point of $180?

I just plan on using it for surfing the web, reading e-books, etc. Im just looking for something cheap to mess around with, play with it for a couple of months, and probably end up selling it you know how it is

Any other recommendations, besides the hp touchpad?? I'd consider a 7" screen as well, but hoping to spend under $300.

I know this forum is biased towards apple stuff, but you guys tend to very knowledgeable about other products as well.
Thanks,
P

You can try to pickup the Asus Transformer tablet from Best Buy on Black Friday for $249 (I believe). I would definitely buy an android device over the Touchpad. Also there are other deals going on for other tablets as well on Black Friday.

wrinkster22
Nov 22, 2011, 04:12 PM
How about a use iPad 1 or a refurbished iPad 1?

sl33t
Nov 22, 2011, 04:17 PM
i'd say the new kindle fire.....and you guys obviously didn't see the part where he said he's NOT interested in the original iPad.

urkel
Nov 22, 2011, 05:28 PM
The Fire is a decent product for only $200 (i own both Fire and iPad 2). But honestly, with a $300 budget and a desire for an iPad 2 then the iPad 1 isn't something you should just brush aside. Its a solid machine and still is being supported by Apple updates.

porcupine8
Nov 22, 2011, 06:39 PM
Honestly, I'd save up for an iPad rather than waste money on most of the others. The only ones I'd consider are the nook and the Fire. Save now, and when the 3 is introduced you'll be able to get a used 2 plus some left over for apps.

aneftp
Nov 22, 2011, 07:02 PM
Try to get the Playbook (if you can find one these days) RIM just launched a cough cough (fire sale for the public). RIM calls its a promo but any one can see it as a firesale.

$199 for 16GB model. Playbooks just were not selling at the $499 price. Rim just finally gave up this past week and officially discounting to $199/299 (16/32gb models. )

Heck they even had special 64gb ones that quickly sold out at bestbuy for the super low price of $229.

I own an iPad 2, playbook and briefly owned a Touchpad and Xoom.

Obviously love the iPad 2. But I actually carry the Playbook with me everyday to work these days. You really need to try one with all the updated software because many of the store display models are running older software.

Sure it's missing native email and calendars apps (supposedly the long delayed os2.0 will finally be released in Feb according to the last official playbook blog).
Android player finally supported in OS 2.0 release. Official 2.0 will have email and calendar.

Playbook has outstanding flash support (for those who need it). I was able to stream illegal nfl network broncos jets game last Thursday on my playbook. Can't do that on an iPad 2.

Speakers and camera on playbook are outstanding.

Personally I wouldn't buy any non iPad 2 for more than $300. You have a lot of choices.

RIM has gone on record to keep supporting QNX (blackberry next gen operating system playbook is base on). Rim is trying to rename their system BBx.

ECUpirate44
Nov 22, 2011, 07:03 PM
Kindle Fire.

trip1ex
Nov 22, 2011, 07:15 PM
Save up. $300 isn't too far away from an iPad. You can save until the iPad 3 comes out.

*LTD*
Nov 22, 2011, 07:25 PM
Just start saving.

As of now there aren't really any viable alternatives.

You could always see for yourself, though, and maybe try an Asus or whatever else. Just keep the receipt for when you'll be returning it.

kdarling
Nov 22, 2011, 07:31 PM
For $300, you can get something decent, fast and with apps.

As ZDNet put it, why not get a 7" HTC Flyer (http://www.zdnet.com/blog/mobile-gadgeteer/thinking-of-a-7-inch-tablet-dont-forget-the-powerful-htc-flyer/5271?tag=search-results-rivers;item1)for $299 instead of something far less capable?

It's got a very nice looking UI, with really nice widgets.

Later, you could also treat yourself to its optional active pen.

I love mine, and I paid a lot more than $300.

Doc750
Nov 22, 2011, 07:32 PM
Start saving ....

IllIllIll
Nov 22, 2011, 07:33 PM
As of now there aren't really any viable alternatives.
Give me a break. "There aren't really any viable alternatives" when the OP specifically stated that all he wants to do is "surf the web, read e-books, etc."? Really?

There are PLENTY of "viable alternatives", whether they're running iOS or Android or something else. Quit being such a biased fanboy.

*LTD*
Nov 22, 2011, 07:39 PM
Give me a break. "There aren't really any viable alternatives" when the OP specifically stated that all he wants to do is "surf the web, read e-books, etc."? Really?

There are PLENTY of "viable alternatives", whether they're running iOS or Android or something else. Quit being such a biased fanboy.

He'll end up wanting the iPad when it's all said and done. If it's just a matter of money he'll likely save for it.

He's already consigned everything else to 2nd rate status, by his own admission. I don't think he really wants to be stuck with 2nd rate.

IllIllIll
Nov 22, 2011, 07:53 PM
He'll end up wanting the iPad when it's all said and done. If it's just a matter of money he'll likely save for it.

He's already consigned everything else to 2nd rate status, by his own admission. I don't think he really wants to be stuck with 2nd rate.

If he doesn't want to be stuck with 2nd rate why did he start this thread in the first place?? By his own admission he can't afford an iPad2 right now, has $300 to spend, and asked for recommendations. Doesn't sound like he's written everything else off like you have.

jplusc
Nov 22, 2011, 10:50 PM
I vote for the Kindle Fire.

rgarjr
Nov 22, 2011, 11:00 PM
Save 200 bucks for an iPad 2. The fluidness on it is sick.

wordoflife
Nov 22, 2011, 11:05 PM
I personally think the next best thing to an iPad 2 is an iPad 1. Everything else, in my opinion, offers much less functionality to the point where you begin to ask yourself if it's even worth it.

Yr Blues
Nov 22, 2011, 11:10 PM
As much as I hate the design of the Nook, I think it'll run great with ICS. The Kindle Fire looks cooler, though.

Hire some better designers, B&N! ;)

----------

I personally think the next best thing to an iPad 2 is an iPad 1. Everything else, in my opinion, offers much less functionality to the point where you begin to ask yourself if it's even worth it.

Didn't answer OP's question at his price point.

Shasta McNasty
Nov 22, 2011, 11:28 PM
^I think he did. He basically said if not an iPad 2 he'd rather have an iPad 1 as everything else isn't worth the $200. I share the same feeling. Id rather have an iPad 1 over any nook or fire or whatever the alternatives are.

wordoflife
Nov 22, 2011, 11:40 PM
^I think he did. He basically said if not an iPad 2 he'd rather have an iPad 1 as everything else isn't worth the $200. I share the same feeling. Id rather have an iPad 1 over any nook or fire or whatever the alternatives are.

Pretty much what I was [trying] to get at. Just was a suggestion to consider the iPad 1, which for some reason the OP automatically ruled out.

Plus, you can find first gens for under $300 too, used. $399 Apple refurbished.

secksthoi
Nov 23, 2011, 02:05 AM
Personally, I wouldn't brush off the original iPad. It's affordable and kind of brings you into the Apple/iPad ecosystem. Then, once you can afford whatever new iPad is out, all you have to do is sync and 'boom' everything is there where you left it.

I find it more dated transferring files and contacts from one system to the next. Brings me to remember, does anyone remember the old days of excitement and hassle of buying a new dumbphone and spending like a good hour re-adding contacts? :p

Edit: But I totally get, you wanna just get your hands wet with a tablet. I was the same with the original iPad when I sold it a few months after. With that, seems like the Fire is pretty cool with Amazon only going to get better, probably.

wrkactjob
Nov 23, 2011, 02:19 AM
Paracetamol.

imotionb18
Nov 23, 2011, 06:32 AM
Save some money and get the ipad 2. If you can't go for the nook tablet. I tried out a kindle fire this weekend and I wasn't impressed at all. I'm going to pick up a nook tablet next week as a christmas gift.

BornAgainMac
Nov 23, 2011, 06:39 AM
On the CNN website, they just recently did a feature of tablets you never heard of that had lower prices than the iPad.

brodas
Nov 23, 2011, 12:02 PM
Blackberry play book its like 200 bucks for blackfriday

poloponies
Nov 23, 2011, 12:42 PM
Blackberry play book its like 200 bucks for blackfriday

And it may even have email capabilities soon! Hello 21st Century.

bettaboy123
Nov 23, 2011, 12:51 PM
Just get an iPad 1. It's just fine, I bought a refurbished one after the iPad 2 launch, and even though something newer was out, the iPad 1 is great! It's even better with iOS 5, too. Dont rule it out, it's my go-to device for everything. And the weight/heft is actually kinda reassuring, this thing is like a tank.

My parents have a XOOM, and they hardly use it. It's a paperweight. Do yourself a favor and just get the iPad 1. I'm holding out on buying a new tablet until retina comes along or some more compelling Android/Win8 tabs anyways. This thing is great, just buy it so you'll enjoy your tablet experience.

IllIllIll
Nov 23, 2011, 01:17 PM
My parents have a XOOM, and they hardly use it. It's a paperweight. Do yourself a favor and just get the iPad 1.
Weak and irrelevant argument. Are you saying that if your parents had an iPad instead of a Xoom, they'd be using it every day? Somehow I find that very hard to believe.

monkeylui
Nov 23, 2011, 01:22 PM
Get something that has some support behind it. Just because the touchpads & playbooks are on sale doesn't mean you should get them. I'd go with the Fire. I have the iPad 2 and always recommend that, but if you have just enough, go with the fire & a prime membership. Amazon has the ecosystem to back up the fire as an excellent device. I've hardly put mine down since I got it.

urkel
Nov 23, 2011, 02:29 PM
Get something that has some support behind it. Just because the touchpads & playbooks are on sale doesn't mean you should get them. I'd go with the Fire. I have the iPad 2 and always recommend that, but if you have just enough, go with the fire & a prime membership. Amazon has the ecosystem to back up the fire as an excellent device. I've hardly put mine down since I got it.

I agree. It's very short sighted to buy the "bargain" because if you plan on using it more than a year you want to be reassured its going to be supported.

I was a long time Palm fan and Pre user so when the TouchPads went down to $100 I picked one up for everyone in the family. And even though it's a solid tablet and a bargain, the idea that its parent company is abandoning it would create a situation where my non-techie mom and brother would be stuck with unsupported technology. So I cashed in on the eBay craze and used the profits to buy my mom an iPad and my brother a Fire. Both devices are made by companies you can trust and rather than buying the CHEAPER alternative I was able to but the RIGHT choice for them as individuals.

mhdena
Nov 23, 2011, 07:47 PM
I got one of the new 64gb iPad 1 from Verizon for $399, when the iPad 2 goes to $399 I'll get one of those:D

nepalisherpa
Nov 23, 2011, 10:43 PM
OP, check this out: http://www.gamestop.com/gamestop-refurbished-iphone-ipad-ipod?utm_source=linkshare&utm_medium=affiliate&utm_campaign=deeplink&cid=afl_10000087&affID=77777&sourceID=g_kEfAT435U-IE_lo4AvoaJJB8Vh1SKF3A

smelly cat
Nov 23, 2011, 10:46 PM
Get three of these.

http://arstechnica.com/gadgets/reviews/2010/11/worst-gadget-ever-ars-reviews-a-99-android-tablet.ars

*LTD*
Nov 23, 2011, 11:14 PM
OP wants to spend his money, not waste it. Some of the non-iPad recommendations in this thread are really scraping the bottom.

vitzr
Nov 24, 2011, 01:14 AM
Sounds like an impulse buy...

blueroom
Nov 24, 2011, 01:15 AM
I'd rather have a used iPad 1 than any other current tablet.

Yumunum
Nov 24, 2011, 01:24 AM
Buy an iPad 1... Just do it.

davedvdy
Nov 26, 2011, 02:27 PM
iPad 1 or go for the Nook Tablet @ $249. Expandable and very responsive. Take the Kindle Fire if u want a lackluster/unresponsive screen as well as lag ESP with pinch and zoom in browser. Having tried both, I noticed a big difference.

sracer
Nov 26, 2011, 04:25 PM
iPad 1 or go for the Nook Tablet @ $249. Expandable and very responsive. Take the Kindle Fire if u want a lackluster/unresponsive screen as well as lag ESP with pinch and zoom in browser. Having tried both, I noticed a big difference.
Your experience with the Kindle Fire is outdated. That was with the 6.0 firmware. 6.1 fixed virtually all of the performance issues. There is just one or two minor performance issues that will be fixed with the next update.

The Kindle Fire can sideload apps including alternate app stores. It is quite flexible out-of-the-box and I have not found any reason to root it.

As for the Nook Tablet. Only 1GB of the internal memory is available for side-loaded media. To access the remainder of the internal memory one will need to root it and tweak it.

I recommend a Fire over the Nook Tablet... easily. But if a person is a little tech savvy then I'd put the nook color ($199) a close second behind the Fire.

Out of the box, both nook devices are more locked down than the Fire.

torbjoern
Nov 26, 2011, 04:31 PM
Your experience with the Kindle Fire is outdated. That was with the 6.0 firmware. 6.1 fixed virtually all of the performance issues. There is just one or two minor performance issues that will be fixed with the next update.

That sounds familiar to me... oh, yes - the exact same thing was said about the horrible operating system Windows Mobile (except it was 6.0 vs 6.5, I think).

davedvdy
Nov 26, 2011, 05:19 PM
Your experience with the Kindle Fire is outdated. That was with the 6.0 firmware. 6.1 fixed virtually all of the performance issues. There is just one or two minor performance issues that will be fixed with the next update.

The Kindle Fire can sideload apps including alternate app stores. It is quite flexible out-of-the-box and I have not found any reason to root it.

As for the Nook Tablet. Only 1GB of the internal memory is available for side-loaded media. To access the remainder of the internal memory one will need to root it and tweak it.

I recommend a Fire over the Nook Tablet... easily. But if a person is a little tech savvy then I'd put the nook color ($199) a close second behind the Fire.

Out of the box, both nook devices are more locked down than the Fire.

That is good to hear about the update.

True, only 1 GB is useable for outside media on the Nook Tablet, but what you failed to include to mention is that it's expandable via SD cards up to 32 Gb. This is something that can't be done on the Fire unless u want to add the Cloud argument which isn't the same ESP where wifi isn't available.


Regardless, The Tablet is
Much snappier than the Color and has a dual core CPU as well as 1 GB of RAM. Unless of course the upcoming Color update fixes the lag issues or a jailbreak. The Color still lacks the hardware specs of the Tablet.

As for your sideloading app argument with the Fire -- unless I missed something it didn't look all that more easy to do than rooting the device altogether. ESP without owning an existing Android device.

Connecting to the computer every time u need to download non Kindle approved apps does not in any way represent a "seamless" or open experience either.
According to Ubergizmo, u would have to root the device to get Android Market on the Fire. Then take into account u still have less than 8 GB to use from the start without any
Expandability option.

Both devices have their Pros and Cons I will say though (Amazon Prime could be seen as a big perk), and ESP if they fixed issues with the Fire.

ReallyBigFeet
Nov 26, 2011, 09:24 PM
Kindle Fire is a good choice as long as you are happy being locked into proprietary formats from Amazons servers.

However, the Nook Tablet allows you to read ePubs and even install the Kindle reader app, making it the better value. Engadget gave it higher marks than the Fire as well. (http://www.engadget.com/2011/11/21/barnes-and-noble-nook-tablet-review/)

Oh and the locked down award goes to the Fire. Slide a memory card into the Nook and your storage options are limitless. The Fire is locked down for storage.

monkeylui
Nov 26, 2011, 10:44 PM
Kindle Fire is a good choice as long as you are happy being locked into proprietary formats from Amazons servers.

However, the Nook Tablet allows you to read ePubs and even install the Kindle reader app, making it the better value. Engadget gave it higher marks than the Fire as well. (http://www.engadget.com/2011/11/21/barnes-and-noble-nook-tablet-review/)

Oh and the locked down award goes to the Fire. Slide a memory card into the Nook and your storage options are limitless. The Fire is locked down for storage.

Wrong. I can access a Kingston Wi-Drive perfectly fine. There have also been people that installed the Nook app from what I have read, & other readers. You can also listen to MP3's which is not a proprietary format. Also supports MP4 format.

I suggest you do some research before making completely false statements.

ReallyBigFeet
Nov 26, 2011, 11:09 PM
Wrong. I can access a Kingston Wi-Drive perfectly fine. There have also been people that installed the Nook app from what I have read, & other readers. You can also listen to MP3's which is not a proprietary format. Also supports MP4 format.

I suggest you do some research before making completely false statements.

Best research is owning one of each.

For commercial books, the Fire only supports AZW (Kindle format). It does support a few other formats (.txt, unprotected .prc, etc.) but so does every other eReader on the market these days and those formats aren't readily available when buying commercial books.

Nook supports everything available on the market today, including iPad's ePub format. Via the Kindle app, it even supports Amazon's proprietary AZW format.

Again, read the review of the link I posted. I'll give the Fire to my father since he already has the little Kindle and this is a nice upgrade for him since he's already locked into the AZW format. But if you want to stay out of Amazon's walled garden, then stick with the Nook. Otherwise, enjoy your locked experience with the Fire which, granted, is idiot proofed for those who lean that direction.

As for access via the Kingston drive, $90 for a 32gb WiFi-speed drive versus $30 for a 32gb MicroSD drive that slides into the Nook. Really? You think that's a good comparison to demonstrate that by spending half the cost of the Fire you can store some data is worth it? Wow....

For the rest:

Files supported by Fire:

Documents: AZW, AZW1, TXT, MOBI (unprotected), PRC, DOC
Audio supported within Music: AAC LC/LTP, HE-AACv1 (AAC+), HE-AACv2 (enhanced AAC+), AMR-NB (.3gp), AMR-WB (.3gp), MP3, MIDI, Ogg Vorbis (.ogg), PCM/WAVE (.wav)
Images: JPEG, PNG, GIF, BMP
Video: H.263 (.3gp, .mp4), H264 AVC (.3gp, .mp4), MPEG 4 SP/ASP (.3gp), VP8 (.webm)


File supported by Nook:

Documents: EPUB (including Adobe DRM or DRM free), PDF, XLS, DOC, PPT, TXT, DOCM, XLSM, PPTM, PPSX, PPSM, DOCX, XLX, PPTX. AZW via Kindle app.
Video: MP4, Adobe Flash Player format, 3GP, 3G2 MKV, WEBM (Video Codecs: H.264, MPEG-4, H.263, VP8)
Images: JPG, GIF, PNG, BMP
Audio: MP3, MP4, AAC, AMR, WAV, OGG (Audio Codecs MP3, AAC, AMR, LPCM, OGG Vorbis)

monkeylui
Nov 26, 2011, 11:57 PM
Ummm, you stated the fire was locked down for storage. I merely corrected your false statement. Wether you think it's not worth the price or not is irrelevant & you are merely side stepping the fact that you made a false statement. The point was that you can in fact access external storage. Period.

Mac.World
Nov 27, 2011, 12:04 AM
Your experience with the Kindle Fire is outdated. That was with the 6.0 firmware. 6.1 fixed virtually all of the performance issues. There is just one or two minor performance issues that will be fixed with the next update.

The Kindle Fire can sideload apps including alternate app stores. It is quite flexible out-of-the-box and I have not found any reason to root it.

As for the Nook Tablet. Only 1GB of the internal memory is available for side-loaded media. To access the remainder of the internal memory one will need to root it and tweak it.

I recommend a Fire over the Nook Tablet... easily. But if a person is a little tech savvy then I'd put the nook color ($199) a close second behind the Fire.

Out of the box, both nook devices are more locked down than the Fire.
Biggest downside wrt the Fire, is it's meager 6.5gb of onboard storage. Nook can be easily rooted for a complete Android experience and has an sd card slot for an additional 32gb of storage (and assuming it is like the Color, you can boot directly into Android via the sd card, negating the need to root the device itself), not to mention the Nook has a better battery and has 1gb of RAM . These things make the Nook a better buy imo.

----------

Wrong. I can access a Kingston Wi-Drive perfectly fine. There have also been people that installed the Nook app from what I have read, & other readers. You can also listen to MP3's which is not a proprietary format. Also supports MP4 format.

I suggest you do some research before making completely false statements.
So you have to lug around an additional drive with you while you are on the go? I'll take an sd card slot for the win Alex. :D

davedvdy
Nov 27, 2011, 01:44 AM
Your experience with the Kindle Fire is outdated. That was with the 6.0 firmware. 6.1 fixed virtually all of the performance issues. There is just one or two minor performance issues that will be fixed with the next update.

.

Make no mistake, even AFTER the update I noticed the Kindle Fire is still plenty laggy, or at least in regards to the browser. Pinch+Zoom and scrolling is still off. I checked to make sure the firmware was at 6.1 and it is.


For a person such as myself who is used to the iPad 2's fluid responsiveness, it doesn't even come close in just that one respect.

I still stand with Mac.World and believe Nook Tablet>Kindle Fire... a million times over. Snappy and fluid, with plenty of storage options for expandability. It's no iPad, but at that price point it's great.

monkeylui
Nov 27, 2011, 09:32 AM
Biggest downside wrt the Fire, is it's meager 6.5gb of onboard storage. Nook can be easily rooted for a complete Android experience and has an sd card slot for an additional 32gb of storage (and assuming it is like the Color, you can boot directly into Android via the sd card, negating the need to root the device itself), not to mention the Nook has a better battery and has 1gb of RAM . These things make the Nook a better buy imo.

----------


So you have to lug around an additional drive with you while you are on the go? I'll take an sd card slot for the win Alex. :D

Yes. I have to use a wheeled laptop bag JUST for the Wi-drive. Fml.

phatjoe
Nov 27, 2011, 12:14 PM
Thanks everyone for the responses. I narrowed it down to the new Nook tablet ($250) or a refurb Acer Iconia 10" screen ($295). Either one, I can download the Amazon app to read books (I've got an account set up with Amazon).

I've read to many negative comments regarding the Fire to consider it.

I'm just debating now regarding a 10" screen or a 7" screen.

darngooddesign
Nov 27, 2011, 12:41 PM
...I'm just debating now regarding a 10" screen or a 7" screen.

I know its silly, but cut out a piece of cardboard for the two sizes and carry them around with you.

Its cheaper than buying them to try out.