Tablets

Tablet choices this Christmas. If anyone is looking at buying a new computer or an iPad this Christmas I have the 411 on all of it. If you want the best combination of weight, size and price the iPad mini is the clear winner. It is the lightest tablet with a size about the same as the bigger models without all the bulk. The iPad mini is the same size on its side as the regular iPad is standing up. Plus Apple has special software that gives you a better view of a web page than the other tablets even though some of the specs are not as good. If you don’t like the price and are a little on the nerdy side I would get a Nexus 7 or an LG G Pad. Another alternative is the the Kindle Fire HD which is great if all you want is low price, book reader and web browser. Amazon has done a great job of making Android look simple. If you don’t care about price and you want the biggest fastest tablet I would get a new iPad (5). The other options are storage space and 4G (data plan). With the iPad the bigger the better as it is still based on local storage of music and photos. On the Android (Nexus, Fire) they are based on the cloud and storage is not an issue unless you travel by plane and want to watch movies without an Internet connection. As for the data plan only get this if you are going to be out and about without Internet access. With most of today’s smart phones you are better off adding a hotspot plan than getting a 4G tablet. It is nice to not have to think about where you are getting your Internet connection but it is pricey to have Internet on your tablet. If you do want 4G, go with Verizon unless you are in an area that only AT&T supports. Verizon will give you the best national coverage.

iPad mini

Way cooler then I thought it would be. The lightest thing and thin but in a good way. I thought it would slide out of your hands because of the metal back. It feels comfortable and when it is turned on its side it is the same size as the bigger iPad upright. I think the mini is the perfect size. Give one a try and you will know what I’m talking about. I find using my index is not always the best way to scroll left to right. The interface has been optimized for for the thumbs. If you scroll with your thumbs from the right or left side works well. You also need to watch out for the side edges as there is software to figure out if you are holding or touching the sides. Some times it works.

Nexus 7

Small enough that the phone apps look ok and big enough to run tablet apps. Real tablet apps are still few and far between but getting better all the time. It feels fast and smooth with Jelly Bean or CM10. Using it feels good and just the right size.