Is the iPad or Tablets in general good value?

Discussion in 'iPad Tips, Help and Troubleshooting' started by Lankyman, Oct 22, 2011.

  1. Lankyman macrumors 68000

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    #1
    I know this may prove controversial and I know people will say I'm comparing Apples (no pun intended) with Pears. However, when I look at the price of Tablets in general so not specifically the iPad do those who own them and those who don't consider them to be good value for money? I was browsing the web today, wasting time really, when I just happened to notice the price of the 32gig wi-fi only version here in the UK - £479. This got me doing a bit of mental arithmetic and I started to add on a couple of standard items that I thought you might also need as basics.

    To the basic price I added the iPad2 cover i.e. the grey plastic one price £35. I then decided it also needed rear protection so another £20 for the Hypershield (which looks a very good product). Then there's Applecare another £69 so a grand total then of £603. That's almost the price of my Mac Mini and only £396 less than my iMac which is a world removed from an iPad. I haven't even added in the cost of ATV2 if I want to stream wirelessly from the iPad to my flat panel TV.

    When I look at what I could get for that money (or have done if I include my mini) then I just think phew! where do they get the prices from.
     
  2. Dangerous Theory macrumors 68000

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    #2
    Mobility. Ease of use. Uniqueness. Entertainment.

    You pay for these.
     
  3. Aspasia macrumors 65816

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    #3
    But you can't take your mini or iMac with you everywhere you go and find out local traffic conditions, or the nearest restaurant, or how to get to a specific destination, or check your bank balance, the news, weather, etc.

    I look at my (Windows) desktop computer, with its tower, keyboard, wireless mouse, speakers, and monitor. All those parts, all those tethers, all that weight. And that firewall/a.v. song and dance routine it does each time it's booted.

    Then I use my iPad 2 (32/3G) and marvel. Is it good value for the price I paid? Absolutely, unequivocally, yes.
     
  4. Mak47 macrumors 6502a

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    #4
    One must define what is valuable to them to determine the value of a consumer product.

    I for example, do not ride a bicycle, so a bicycle helmet at any price has no value to me, even if it were only $1.00--despite the fact that it may be the most technologically advanced bicycle helmet on the planet.

    An iMac or a Mac Mini are packed to the gills with hardware that is far more powerful than what is inside an iPad, and especially in the case of the iMac, offer a selection of peripheral devices included with the price. But those devices aren't mobile, they are stationary. As powerful as they may be, they are utterly useless if I need something to browse the web while sitting on a train.

    Laptops like the MacBook Air or MacBook Pro would be more apt comparisons, as they are portable. Even so, they don't offer the versatility of an iPad. I won't carry a MacBook Pro with me everywhere I go, but I can do that with an iPad, even if I go somewhere that I don't need it, I can hide it in my glove compartment. I can't do that with a laptop.

    Everyone's needs are different, therefore their definitions of value will be different.
     
  5. jsh1120 macrumors 65816

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    #5
    A "good value?" Not for me. Not being locked into the Apple-only ecosystem I could purchase an 11" laptop for approximately the same price with significantly greater functionality and nearly comparable portability, especially when I add in the price of a bluetooth keyboard, stand, and physical protection.

    The iPad is a very nice device but my little HP 11" netbook/notebook runs Windows 7 with a larger screen, multiple resizable windows, four times as much storage capacity, and runs the Microsoft Office software I need. The price? Well, I got mine from Verizon as a mobile device for $99. But if I were purchasing it retail, it would have run about $600.

    So why do I have an iPad and my 11" netbook/notebook sits largely unused? Simple answer. I can share the iPad with my seven year old daughter and she can use hundreds or even thousands of apps that are not available in the PC environment.

    So what's the "value" of the iPad? Priceless.
     
  6. Lankyman thread starter macrumors 68000

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    #6
    Ah well! I suppose there's the rub, is it valuable to the consumer. There again though one could argue it throws up more questions than it answers. I lot of replies have been about the portability of the iPad/Tablets. However, there have been a number of studies that suggest the vast vast majority of Tablets will never leave the consumers home so again that does stand that argument on it's head. If I take myself as an example, I've had a Laptop since 2001 and yet neither the wife or I have ever taken it further than the lounge or bedroom. I don't have a smartphone for exactly the same reason i.e. there's nothing in my life that won't wait until I arrive home.

    As I said it has to be horses for courses but I do wonder if I Tablet is the best and the cheapest solution for a great many users or whether they just see it as the next must have consumable?
     
  7. Night Spring macrumors G5

    Night Spring

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    #7
    Best and cheapest solution for WHAT? If you want to read in bed, then I think tablets are the bast solution, though perhaps not the cheapest. If you need to type your PhD thesis, then tablets are probably the worst solution, though they could be useful in taking notes at the library. An architect needing to run CAD programs couldn't do it on an iPad, but if he needed to take a bunch of blueprints out to a construction site, putting them on an iPad would be lighter than printing them out or bringing his laptop.

    Probably tablets aren't the cheapest solution to anything, but frequently they are the best for some tasks. I think the people who buy tablets today are just willing to pay a premium for convenience.
     
  8. Usual macrumors member

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    #8
    There had been a program in a Turkish web site for this subject. The latest comment of the guys were "if you are an information consumer, then the tablets are a good choice. But if you are producing the information, then probably, it will not a good choice."

    It is good if you need:
    1.Need mobility,
    2. If you want to read e-mails, watch movies-videos, playing some games, reading books
    3. Reading e-mails, reports etc.
    4. Looking for photos, pictures

    But not good if you are,

    1. Writing a long e-mail,
    2. Doing something on Photoshop or playing with some video editors (professionally :)
    3. Trying to use it for business, such as excel etc.

    This are my opinion..
     
  9. Lankyman thread starter macrumors 68000

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    #9
    Now funnily enough you have given an example there that I would argue to the contrary till the cows come home - backlit tablets are not the best solution for reading, in fact I would list them as one of the worst. Kindle and similar of that ilk - absolutely, e-ink is the best thing going for mimicking text in a book but it's a known fact that backlit screens are very tiring on the eyes. I know from my own experiences in the office that when I receive a document to read I invariably print it rather than read it on my computer screen.

    Don't get me wrong, I do think tablets are a very nice bit of kit, though I remain to be convinced they are the best value solution for your computer needs if it's unlikely they will ever be used other than in your own home. I think they are a far more valuable tool for business than for home consumers, which I believe was their intended market originally.
     
  10. Night Spring macrumors G5

    Night Spring

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    #10
    We'll have to agree to disagree. E-ink hurts my eyes because it's not really black on white, but grey on grey. Recent e-ink readers have gotten better, but the contrast is still not as sharp as LCD screens. Plus, I like the fact that I can read the iPad in the dark without having to hunt for and manage another light source. Hence, the best solution for reading IN BED. :D
     
  11. jsh1120 macrumors 65816

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    #11
    Sorry, but as far as I know it is not a "known fact that backlit screens are very tiring on the eyes." What IS a "known fact" is that individual preferences vary widely.

    My wife finds a backlit screen tiring; I don't. My wife doesn't spend 10-12 hours a day looking at a backlit screen; I do and I have for about 30 years.

    I'm inclined to believe that the question turns on one's expectations and what one gets used to. My wife wouldn't give up her Kindle and its e-ink display. Period. I find the iPad to be a perfectly acceptable reading device.
     
  12. robgendreau macrumors 68030

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    #12
    No disrespect to the OP, but these sorts of questions are rather meaningless without reference to what you need to do.

    People are prone to forget that computers are just multi-use tools. And you can't really address whether they are a good value unless you know what software is used to do which task. For example, iPad's are fantastic for naked-eye astronomy cuz you can move them around above your head and spot objects in the sky easily; not so much with even a small laptop (even assuming the software exists and it has a compass, etc). On the other hand, if you need a computer to run a telescope, the iPad is a waste and the laptop rules.

    Rob
     
  13. Night Spring macrumors G5

    Night Spring

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    #13
  14. Lankyman thread starter macrumors 68000

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    #14
    Google or Bing will be your friend here, lots and lots of pages on this subject. There again it could be the rest of us that are singing out of tune?
     
  15. Ashwood11 macrumors 65816

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    #15
    Tens of millions of people bought the iPad because it had no value.
     
  16. boomhower macrumors 68000

    boomhower

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    #16
    It's a matter of perspective. I use mine mainly for taking to work watching movies and some games. Around the house I use it for light browsing. I feel I have gotten my monies worth out of it. My wife was mad when I bought it saying I didn't need it and wouldn't use it. Now I don't hear a peep as she's deep in a game of Plants vs. Zombies. Is it a bargain? No. Is it a fair price for a very nice piece of computing equipment? Yep, to me at least.
     
  17. Dorkington macrumors 6502a

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    #17
    For my usage scenario, it most definitely is. I have zero need for a laptop with one, and it's much better for reading comics and the news, imo.

    It really all depends on your usage scenario.

    If you want to create work, or use lots of complicated sites, than no, it's not really worth it.
     
  18. Lankyman, Oct 24, 2011
    Last edited: Oct 24, 2011

    Lankyman thread starter macrumors 68000

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    #18
    Millions of people got involved in pyramid selling - your point?

    ----------

    I think (value apart) that the demographic for home users is - mainly browsers, those who use social networking sites, (god help us) the odd email, looking at pics and listening to music i.e. media consumption. Even then I find the screen a bit to small (for me personally). I don't think your average "proper" PC user finds them to be a good alternative to a Desktop/Notebook computer though. Those who say they have now replaced their computer with a Tablet were IMO never really a "true" computer user in the first place.
     
  19. TrollToddington, Oct 24, 2011
    Last edited: Oct 24, 2011

    TrollToddington macrumors 6502

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    #19
    One word - ergonomics. I think the angle of viewing of a tablet is much more natural that that of a laptop. You can have the tablet on your lap and read a book. try doing this with a laptop.

    Besides that, I predict that in not so long time tablets will be as mainstream as mobile phones. Books will be sold primarily in electronic format. Then, purchasing a tablet or a kindle will be mandatory. No need to purchase printed books with their storage requirements. I've loaded ~25 books to my iPad and have them with me wherever I go. With printed books that would be impossible.
     
  20. Lankyman thread starter macrumors 68000

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    #20
    Despite what you say sales of physical books are increasing, there was an article on this very subject on the BBC here in the UK only last week. As much as I love technology there is no substitute for holding a book in your hand. Besides tablets need to embrace e-ink before they can even start to lay claim to being book friendly - Kindle yes Tablets NO!
     
  21. whitenoise macrumors regular

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    #21
    I just bought a kindle and have started reading full time again, even though I have had Ipad's from the start....I actually think the size and added weight played its part, although it wasn't a conscious decision. I just haven't read much on the iPad.

    I use my iPad to view loads of video, I listen to music and podcasts, I play games, I browse the web. It is the fact that the iPad is always on that is most appealing, the fact that you can just grab it and use it. You don't have to turn it on, or open it up, you can be using it in a couple of seconds.
     
  22. TrollToddington macrumors 6502

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    #22
    With a tablet/kindle I can have my entire book collection wherever I go to. Moreover, a tablet allows me to have my entire photo album collection to be with me, and my music collection, too. All in one, small, package.

    I don't care too much about what the smarts at the BBC claim, I see the tablet as a very powerful tool whose capabilities will expand in the near future. This segment has only just appeared and is exploding as the sales numbers show.
     
  23. Night Spring macrumors G5

    Night Spring

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    #23
    E-ink is only good for text-only books. Ok, maybe that's a majority of books, but there are a significant number of books that aren't text-only -- they include illustrations, figures, photos, etc. Those books are better on tablets for now, until e-ink gets color.
     
  24. Lankyman thread starter macrumors 68000

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    #24
    Smarts at the BBC what on earth is that supposed to mean - get rid of the chip. The BBC "News" was simply reporting that physical books sales have been increasing year on year for the last few years. You mentioned books I reported that despite your assertion that book sales are doomed the evidence doesn't support your assertion and now you expand the argument into music and pictures? :confused:

    ----------

    I agree entirely, the Kindle and similar products are the best pseudo books I have come across. Their ability to mimic a physical book is very pleasing and in a straight comparison between Tablets and e-books the e-book for reading plain text IMO wins this one every time. Of course you are then left with the decision of do you compromise or buy one of each?
     
  25. mwulf67 macrumors regular

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    #25
    Even if never taken from the house, the portability between a laptop and iPad/Tablet is night and day...I used to try and drag my laptop around the house with me (the couch, the bed, the can, etc), but it was a real pain...it was hot, awkward, uncomfortable, heavy (in relative terms), needed a flat surface for optimal use, had to be plugged in every few hours...with my iPad, taking it anywhere, even within my house, is completely effortless...
     

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