Tips for tablet PC buyers

If you’re planning to buy a tablet PC, you have to make sure that you’re getting one that’s best for you, and not the best one out there. With such a variety of specs put together by different brands and manufacturers, you may realize that there isn’t that one device that has all the features you want and need. So at some point you’re going to have to decide what you must have in a tablet and what you can do without.

But rest assured, there is a tablet out there for you, you just have to know what you’re looking for. Take a look at the following tips to help you in choosing:

1. There’s Apple and then there’s everyone else.

Basically, you can start off by deciding if you’re going to get an iPad or an Android device. When you’ve chosen between an iPad and an Android tablet your choice narrows down to specs and capabilities. Basically, an iPad is pretty but hard to customize. An Android tablet can be a bit unwieldy at first but lets you control the whole user experience

2. Think about your needs first and then your wants.

Make a list of the things you need in a tablet PC. You may initially list down size considerations, storage, services the tablet can run like business VoIP or file sharing, but you could be thinking too technically. Try to think of your needs in terms of something more practical. Instead of dimensions, try writing down ‘can fit in my purse or satchel’. Instead of number of gigabytes, you can think of the things you want to put in your tablet like videos, songs, movies, books or applications. Instead of technical services and apps, think of more practical things like ‘calling my friends and family’ or ‘transferring files to and from my PC easily’.

3. Think about your IT capabilities.

One thing users forget quite easily is to evaluate their own capabilities and the learning curve involved in using a tablet PC. Depending on how adept you are at learning how to use a new device and how easy the device is to use, you may or may not end up knowing everything your tablet PC can do. If you want something that’s a no-brainer, then you should go with the iPad. If you can handle something a little more complicated and flexible, then get an Android tablet.

4. Always ask if the tablet can download apps or if you have to side load them.

Side loading apps means that you have to download the applications on a laptop or a desktop PC then transfer them to the tablet through USB cable or some other means. You may think that this is nothing, but it’s actually very inconvenient. The main function of a tablet is that it has to be portable and that it needs to be able to support itself. If you have to connect it with a PC every time you want an app you see, then you might not be getting a real tablet experience.