I’ve considered getting an iPad lately. A few days ago I voiced this thought to my friends, who completely raged. Funny thing with Apple products, they spark love, or hate. Either you’re a fierce hater of Apple products, or you love them. Back to my friends. They could not belive that I was considering buying such an, and I quote: “Overpriced, no-use, luxury, closed in, and piece of shit”-product. They promptly suggested that I rather should buy a Samsung Galaxy Tab, or even the Xoom, which has yet to hit the stores btw. Let’s study this statements, shall we?
One of the most used arguments against buying an iPad it its price tag, some people seem to believe that its way to overpriced to for a tablet you should consider buying. The low-end iPad, 16 GB WiFi edition, comes in at 499$. The Samsung Galaxy Tab is priced at 600$ dollars. Already the iPad wins hands down. Of course, you can’t make cellphone calls with an iPad, but let’s face it; who want to hold a 7 inch device with one hand while making a call? Come on, it looks ridiculously, and is rather unpractical. Yes, I’m aware that the Galaxy Tab has inbuilt 3G network, and the iPad price quoted is for a model without 3G. The most affordable iPad 3G model comes in at 629$, so it’s a whopping 29$ more expensive than the Galaxy Tab. Rather anti climatic ey?
Another much used argument against the iPad, and other iOS products, is that Apple has its fat iron fist wrapped around all these products. No app is allowed to go live on the App Store before it has been Apple approved. Apple is also known for declining apps which replace, or replicate core functionality of the iOS system. Still, despite the strict regime of Apple, the App Store is filled with apps, both useful and not-so-useful. As of this writing, the App Store has more than 350 000 apps, and over 10 000 000 000 (Yeah, three are that many zeroes) total downloads [Source]. Most of these apps are designed with the iPhone and iPad touch in mind, but will run on the iPad. There are also more than 30 000 apps specifically made for the iPad. The Android Market on the other hand, which is 100% free, anyone can submit an app, has less than 100 native apps for Android powered tablets [Source]. So, you have to choose between buying an iPad, with a closed in ecosystem, but with more than 30 000 apps made for the iPad, or buy an Android powered tablet with less than 100 native apps? I do grasp the ideological arguments people make against Apples app policy, but come on? 30 000+ apps vs less than 100? Those numbers outweigh the agony of Apple ruling with its iron fist.
It would of course be nice to have a flash enabled web browser, since most sites still contain flash elements, even tho they’re moving over to HTML 5 based elements, which the iOS supports. Apple could add this support, and include an easy toggle for people to either turn on or off flash support in on their iOS products.
People owning tablets use them for more than browsing and checking their mail. Games on tablets is a marked in strong growth. Customers are demanding more and more life-like graphics. To do all this, you need your tablet to be able to render a lot of data quickly
The following benchmark [Source] shows that the new iPad 2 is more than twice as fast at the yet not released Motorola Xoom. The iPad is clearly winning this one. Not only does it have to power to render high detail game, its App Store also has apps and games which leverage this power. Among these games is Infinity Blade by Epic Games. The game was originally released to showcase the power of the iPad, but has grown to become a popular game on the iPad. The game has now been updated to take advantage of the much more powerful iPad 2, and the results are stunning. A gallery showing the crisp graphics can be seen here [Touch Arcade].
When Android was first released it was thought of the start a new era for mobile OSes. Google allowed manufacturers to take advantage of the open source Android, and add their own flavour. Soon the Android scene got fragmented with different user interfaces, widgets and so on. The manufactures are in a never-ending race to produce more and more stunning visuals for their phones. Sadly this has created a problem for Android users. When a new Android version comes out, the manufactures tend to release new phones with the new Android version, leaving customers with older handsets out in the cold. If you want a phone with the new Android version, you might need to invest in a new mobile phone. This quickly gets expensive. Apple on the other hand has a track record for updating older iOS devices with new iOS versions when they’re released. This means that you with an iPad can be guaranteed to get updates from Apple for 2-3 years, most likely for free.
I will most likely buy an iPad and not an Android powered tablet in the future. Not because the iPad is hip, not because it has an Apple logo on it. Not because I’m a fanboy. I will however by an iPad because it is in my opinion a superior product compared to Android based tablets.
What do you guys think? Is the iPad the best tablet, or will Android tablets evolve over time to take the lead?