It’s been a couple of months since the last time we did this, so the tablet market has had time to change at least a little bit. We’ve seen some new tablets come to market, including the iPad 3, and some of the old top dogs have gotten some serious competition. We’re still waiting for the resolution revolution for Android though, so there’s still a lot to look forward to this year. Head past the break for my totally subjective lists of 3 tablets to buy right now.
1. Toshiba Excite 7.7
The Samsung Galaxy Tab 7.7 had the top spot in my list last time, and since a tablet that on paper is better than it has since been announced, it’s logical that this list reflects that. The Excite 7.7 is essentially the Toshiba version of the 7.7 tablet, with an AMOLED screen and a similar weight and thickness as the Galaxy Tab 7.7. Unlike Samsung’s tablet though the Toshiba uses a Tegra 3 chip, which while not necessarily any faster than the Galaxy Tab 7.7’s Exynos chip in real life scenarios (though it is faster on paper), should make the Excite 7.7 more compatible with various apps the Exynos has issues with. Examples include Splashtop HD which it annoys me that I can’t use on my Exynos device, and upcoming big title Tegra 3 games like Borderlands 2 also gives me a reason to give the Toshiba the edge. It won’t be out until June though.
2. Toshiba Excite 13
Have I become a Toshiba fanboy? No, and these tablets haven’t even been released or reviewed yet, so I might end up regretting my choices well before they are, but for now Toshiba has some nice offerings. The Excite 13 is a 13.3″ Android device, something that’s quite a bit larger than anything we’ve seen before. It uses a tegra 3 chip to power Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich, and does so on a 1600 x 900 screen. It’s big and heavy, the exact opposite of the 7.7, and is a home tablet or a carry-in-bag tablet if I ever saw one. Why would I buy one? Well, to use at home, where a large high resolution screen makes up for it being more cumbersome to deal with. Again you’ll have to wait for June though.
3. Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1
Back in the land of traditional 10.1-inch tablets is the Galaxy Note 10.1. It originally didn’t peak my interest much because of slightly outdated hardware, but now the jungle telegraph is saying that it has been delayed in order to cram a quad core chip in there, likely one of the new quad core Exynos chips. 10.1-inch tablets haven’t been bumped up in resolution yet, but they have to be powered by something from 2012 in order to be valid options at this point. With that in hand, the active S Pen that ships with this device (hence the Note branding) is enough to make me want this instead of the Transformer Prime, whose GPS issues and ridiculous methods of fixing that has reached levels where I don’t really want one anymore.