Android tablet vs iPad

The rise of the Tablet PC has been remarkable over the last few years.  It has seen PC and Laptop sales decline due to the move towards the “touching the screen” interface that was first introduced on the mobile phone (cell phone for US readers).

The shrinking of hardware has, of course, allowed this to happen (check out our blog on Moore’s Law on how and why this has happened).

In our household we have an Android tablet in an Archos Arnova 7 G2 as well as an Apple iPad 2.  Comparing the 2 is a little pointless in direct comparison (the Apple iPad 2 costs £300+ and the Archos Arnova 7 G2 cost only £79).  The Arnova Android tablet has a much smaller screen than the Apple iPad 2.

Here’s the thing – in my opinion – they do exactly the same thing – they access the web using a browser so when you are sitting on the loo and a keyboard, mouse is not available, you can check out stuff, play the odd silly game, check Facebook, Twitter etc etc.

Sure the iPad has “better” Apps – In fact the Archos Arnova 7 g2 has no actual app store – or a very small one at that (which was very confusing when I first got it)  – I don’t believe this is available anymore anyway – The Archos 10 Tablet has superseded it.

Buy Archos 10 Tablet – 8GB


Buy Apple iPad 2 Tablet

I like Linux as an OS and the Android Operating System is a great version of it.  Allowing a techy to modify it gives flexibility and control should you want it.

The only way to do that with Apple tech is to jailbreak it.  Locking your device down and restricting you to iTunes for Apps gives them too much control and power and I don’t like it.

There are ways around it. There are Linux Apps that allow you to copy files to and from your Apple device (Ubuntu One and libimobiledevice options) – it’s Linux so it’s not so easy – but Google is your friend here (check out http://askubuntu.com/questions/151584/how-to-copy-existing-movie-files-on-ipad-to-watch).

Android tablet vs iPad – Conclusion

For the best value for money – go for the cheapest option.  Unless you can really see yourself using the device as your only interface to the web (unlikely) you will only use it when travelling, or for a quick look.  You wouldn’t use it to Blog or write any lengthy documents.

Android tablet is not locked down and you can do what you like with it.

Apple iPad 2 tries to tie you to iTunes and your app choice is from one source. Also it costs a lot more!

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