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Snowy Owl
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21 Jan 2013, 5:36 pm

I am a college student and I am considering purchasing a tablet to use for school, at home, and as a GPS when I drive (I get lost easily). My stepfather has been suggesting a Google Android tablet, but I've read some terrible reviews. If you have experience with this device what are the pros and cons of owning it; or what tablet would you suggest? I am on a budget and would not like to spend more than 200 dollars.



Trencher93
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21 Jan 2013, 6:52 pm

In this case, it's hard to give advice because you want the tablet you get to operate from a car. That will mean getting a wireless Internet access plan. I would recommend looking at something like the iPad or Nexus 7 with wireless Internet plans and without (ie Wi-Fi only) and see what the difference is. A car GPS may be cheaper.

You're going to have trouble finding a decent tablet under $200. The iPad mini and Nexus 7 are over that amount. When you go below $200, you start getting into specs you don't want. Also be careful because many of the cheap Android tablets lower their cost by not paying Google for its APIs, which include the maps, so cheap tablets may not do what you need. Many Android tablets deserve their bad reviews. The Nexus 7 tablet is an exception, because it has better specs.

I'd look at the $250-300 price range for a decent tablet, and add a wireless Internet plan, and see if you can pay that much. You're going to be pushing $400, plus I think the wireless Internet is a yearly plan. (I don't know, I just have Wi-Fi.) If $350-400 is too steep, it may be time to just get a car GPS.

(Also make sure the wireless Internet will work inside your metal-frame car if you want the tablet to work as a GPS.)



guitarman2010
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21 Jan 2013, 7:19 pm

If you want flexability, than an Android tablet would be optimal. The iPad (or any iOS device) may seem flashy and everything but is really restricted compared to open source Android. Like mentioned above, the Nexus 7 is a very good buy and has decent specs.

The cheaper Android tablets usually fall short in the battery department and most lack a development community for better firmware.


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Faelan
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21 Jan 2013, 7:43 pm

Go to YouTube and search for:

nexus 7 gps car

You should find plenty videos there showing the nexus 7 in action as a car gps. Seems to work pretty well from what I can see. It's possible to pre-download google maps on Android over wi-fi, so as long as you stay within the downloaded area, you'll still be able to use the gps function without a cellular or wi-fi hotspot connection. There are some functions that will not work in this mode though. Unfortunately, I don't remember which at the moment :?

I would personally suggest the Nexus 7 even if it's a bit above your budget. It's about as cheap as you can go without making some serious hardware sacrifices for not a whole lot of money saved. I have the lateste greatest 64gb iPad and I absolutely love it, but... after having tried the Nexus 7 (32gb 3g cellular version), I must say that I'm quite impressed with what you get for the price and would love it just as much as my iPad simply for the fact that it would have cost me less than half as much as I had to pay for the iPad :lol:


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GoonSquad
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22 Jan 2013, 9:50 am

You might consider a Samsung Galaxy Note II.

You can get one of those for $200 with a 2 year contract.... If you can deal with a smaller screen, it might be the best of all worlds for you with the mobile data and all.

I have a first gen Asus Transformer. For the most part I love it. It's great for games and entertainment but not so good for working.

I'm not buying another tablet until I can get something that runs a credible productivity suite like MS Office.

I'll probably buy a surface tab once they get the kinks worked out. Tablets are definitely the future, but there's not a credible laptop replacement in the market yet.


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MXH
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22 Jan 2013, 10:28 am

depending how much you can stretch the budget you can get some really good tablets at the 500 range. The vivotab smart for example runs full windows 8, can be run with either 3g or 4g, has gps/nfc/all those goodies, is about the size of an ipad and is only 499



Trencher93
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22 Jan 2013, 11:07 am

I think it's unanimous. The consumer tablets in the $200 price range aren't going to meet your needs. If you're willing to go up to $350-500, then you're going to get devices that meet your needs.

I am not endorsing this site for purchases, but a dedicated GPS is much more in your price range:

http://www.thegpsstore.com/CatProdsOneA ... tegoryId=1

You didn't say what else you wanted to do with a tablet. Even a large 10-inch screen would be painful for any real work with LaTeX or a word processor. Tablets are okay for quick and casual web browsing, but not research where you paste what you find into documents. A laptop with a 15.6-inch screen would be better for school, and not much more expensive. The new hybrid tablets/netbooks have the high price of a laptop combined with the tiny screen of a tablet.

You have to find what works for you.



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Snowy Owl
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22 Jan 2013, 3:50 pm

I am looking for something that would work as a GPS system and would essentially take the place of my laptop when I am not home. Despite that the whole point of a laptop is portability, I hate traveling with it, fearing the risk of it becoming damaged or lost. However, I have come to the conclusion that a simple tablet is not going to work for my needs.


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RaceDrv709
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22 Jan 2013, 10:04 pm

Spend 250 dollars and get a Nexus 7. I have one and love it.


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LimitedSlip
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29 Jan 2013, 3:50 am

The Nexus 7 is without a doubt the best tablet for the money. The Kindle Fire HD comes close but no cigar. The main thing I've seen wrong with the Nexus 7 is screws coming loose and if that problem occurs I'd personally just void the warranty and take it apart and torque the suckers down (possibly with a little threadlocker for good measure). However I'm pretty sure they've corrected this problem anyways.



Exploronaut
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31 Jan 2013, 11:45 am

Nexus 7
[img][800:513]http://cdn.slashgear.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/08/Genuine-Google-Nexus-7-Bluetooth-Keyboard-Case.jpg[/img]


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