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Customer Discussions > Tablet forum

best tablet for under $200

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Showing 1-25 of 49 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Nov 23, 2012 12:33:33 PM PST
V. Paderes says:
I am looking to buy a tablet under $200. It will be my first and I don't want to spend a lot. I have heard the kindle fires are good, but aren't as advanced as android tablets. I don't know much about tablets, so I am not sure what will work for me

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 23, 2012 12:54:00 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Nov 23, 2012 12:54:20 PM PST
FAL says:
199.99 Nexus 7 16GB is the best tablet and best value tab. It has GPS, fast chipset, has alot of free apps that the Kindle Fire HD doesn't have.

Another nice value tab. is the 149.99 playbook 64GB and it has only a few apps.

Most folks that are the Nexus 7 are pleased with performance and size.

Posted on Nov 23, 2012 6:38:56 PM PST
Yasue says:
I agree with FAL. I wrote a post about this for my blog, actually. It's more or less a specs to look for at the minimum, plus a few thoughts on getting stuck in a "content ecosystem". The Kindle Fire HD is a decent tablet if you don't mind the limited app store from Amazon and more or less buying everything from them. I have suggested them to family and friends who don't mind that though. If you want it primarily as an ereader is does have some advantages. I would rather be free though, since I buy books, movies, games and all kinds of things from the Google Play store and countless other sources. We have a Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 7" and love it, plus the more expensive version of the Nexus 7 (32GB) and it's awesome too. If you want to read that blog post to get an idea what to avoid and consider as the minimum specs, Google search "Streaming TV Guide" and "Tablet specs to pay attention to before you go cheap".

Posted on Nov 24, 2012 3:26:58 AM PST
any reviews for the tursion 10.2 android 4.0

Posted on Nov 24, 2012 6:10:54 AM PST
K. Stover says:
is it better to go ahead and buy a 16 or 32 gb tab or just get the 8 with a sd card slot?

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 24, 2012 6:23:58 AM PST
B. Marks says:
It depends on your needs. If you want to have a lot of movies and TV shows on board you'll want all the storage you can get. Still, an 8 gig tablet with a 32 gig or 64 gig micro SD card is more than adequate.

My preference would be for a 64 gig tablet with a 64 gig card and even then I'd be eager for higher capacity cards to come along. But I don't have a tablet like that and I get along just fine without it.

If you only plan to use the thing to watch streaming video and to check your email and browse the web and read a few books, i'd say a 16 gig tablet was adequate. You might not even need a card. But remember that often people end up using tablets for things they didn't expect to.


Posted on Nov 24, 2012 8:07:36 AM PST
John R. Owen says:
I want to buy a tablet to receive emails and occasionally go on the internet. Which would be the best and least expensive?

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 24, 2012 8:27:31 AM PST
B. Marks says:
Most any good tablet will do that. Those are very basic tablet functions and they make sure they do those things well.

Tablets come in a few different types: 7" and 10" are the common sizes. 7" is more portable. 10" is better for web browsing. Although really they're both fairly portable and both okay for web browsing.

There are tablets geared to a content supplier such as the Kindle Fire or the Nook Tablet. Then there are the more general purpose tablets made by companies like Asus, Toshiba, Samsung and Acer.

I'd avoid tablets that aren't name brands. They tend to be problematic and have poor support and they often don't do what you hope they'll do.


In reply to an earlier post on Nov 24, 2012 10:30:57 AM PST
The best bang for your dollar is the BlackBerry Playbook Selling for $129
Well built lots of apps , runs Andfoid, great for web browsing, watching videos. Video chat, music, movies, games. HD cameras for photos, Emailing, kobo reader. Kindle. Reader, spreadsheets etc. I have an IPad and PlayBook and would have saved alot if I had bought the PlayBook firzt

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 24, 2012 10:37:02 AM PST
The BlackBerry Playbook for $129 is an awesome tablet for the price. I have both an IPad and a Playbook and the PB can hold its own as well as run android apps. It's an incredible deal for the price

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 24, 2012 10:44:54 AM PST
B. Marks says:
The Blackberry Playbook doesn't run Android. It runs an OS called QNX. It does have an Android emulator that an run Android apps that the developer has converted to work on the Playbook but there aren't many such apps.

All apps for the Blackberry playbook have to be purchased from the Blackberry App World, which has fewer apps than probably any other app store in the world, and they tend to be higher priced and of lower quality than apps for other platforms.

I have a 64 gig Playbook and I do have to agree that it's excellent hardware and it has an excellent user interface that is easier to learn and use than either IOS or Android. However there just aren't many good apps for it and that keeps it from being a useful device unless all you need are the apps it comes with.

Another problem with the Playbook is that Blackberry is a phone company and they sell their phones and provide service through the carriers. Since the Playbook isn't a phone it has no carrier and if there's a problem there is simply no way to contact Blackberry. You're just out of luck.

I strongly recommend not getting a Blackberry Playbook if you want a generally useful tablet.


Posted on Nov 25, 2012 4:28:17 PM PST
Beth Erwin says:
I'm trying to find a good tablet but don't know which to buy? Should I get the Ipad or the Galaxy Tab 2 (or Note)?

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 25, 2012 5:48:42 PM PST
B. Marks says:
Those are all very good tablets and they're very different. It's not possible to suggest one over the other without knowing what you want to do with it.

The Ipad's OS is IOS. The other two use Android. I have both and I think IOS is slightly easier to learn but not a lot easier. Android is a little easier to use once you've learned it. Again, not a lot easier to use. What makes it easier is that you can put things where you want them. The things you use can be put where you need them. With IOS you can do a bit of customizing but only very little.

Both offer an excellent selection of apps. Apple has been doing this a little longer so their app store has a few more apps but not many and Android's app store is catching up fast. In most areas both app stores have similar quality and prices but each has areas where it excells.

The retina display of the Ipad means it's screen looks a little better but there are good Android tablets with similar displays made by Acer, Toshiba and Google. All are excellent tablets and worth considering.

The Ipad and the Samsung Galaxy Note 10" are both premium tablets. Both are fast and very well made and very feature-full. The screen on the Ipad is better because the Note has that digital stylus that can't work yet with a higher resolution screen. If that styles seems useful it's your obvious choice.

The Asus TF700 and the Acer A700 have similar screens to the Ipad and are also premium tablets.

The Galaxy Tab 2 10" is an economy model but being made by Samsung it's still reasonably fast and very well made. It has a normal resolution screen and it has most of the features of the other tablets but not all.


Posted on Nov 25, 2012 8:47:57 PM PST
Gin says:
Based on Specs alone, Nexus 7 is the champ and it's the reason I purchased it. However it is lacking a MicroSD/SD card slot (Remedied by a OTG USB CABLE) And it does not have a Mini/Micro HDMI out like the Kindle FIRE HD (The Kindle fire does not have the Card slots either). If you plan to hack your tablet and do things like underclock/overclock it, you cannot do this with the Kindle Fire HD as far as I know (bootloader is locked), where as you can with the Nexus 7 -- Allowing for more customizing.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 25, 2012 8:56:06 PM PST
B. Marks says:
The Nexus 7 is sure faster but the Kindle Fire HD is fairly fast also. They're both good tablets with different intended audiences. Which is best depends on the intended use.

The Nexus has speed and not very good speakers. The Fire has great speakers and is reasonably fast. The Nexus is easy to root. The Fire has access to all of Amazon's content.

As I say, it depends on what you want to do with it.


Posted on Nov 26, 2012 5:20:19 AM PST
Can you type out a report/paper for school on all the tablets?

Posted on Nov 26, 2012 8:33:13 AM PST
I am also wondering which tablet would be best for taking notes and canbe hooked up to a keyboard.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 26, 2012 9:00:11 AM PST
B. Marks says:
Printing is kind of a weak area for tablets. If you install an app called Printshare and you have a wireless printer it supports then it's fairly easy. Otherwise you'll need to transfer the file to a computer and print it from there. Printshare supports most but not all common wireless printers.


In reply to an earlier post on Nov 26, 2012 9:04:21 AM PST
B. Marks says:
The Asus Transformer tablets have an optional keyboard dock that it attaches to easily and when it's attached it becomes like a little laptop. It folds up and the keyboard protects the screen. It's a pretty nice arrangement.

The keyboard dock is a fairly expensive option, usually around $135 or so, but it works very well and it has an extra battery built into it that charges the tablet. It's very simple and fast to attach it and detatch it, or you can leave it attached and have a super-lightweight laptop.

You can also us a bluetooth keyboard with most tablets. They cost about 1/3 as much as the Transformer keyboard dock. Or you can just use the on-screen keyboard for light typing.


Posted on Nov 26, 2012 10:36:29 AM PST
Courtly One says:
What would be the best tablet for playing games on facebook?

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 26, 2012 11:22:20 AM PST
B. Marks says:
From what I've read none of the Android or IOS tablets will currently play most of the Facebook games. I'm not a Facebook game player so I can only tell you what I've read. I suspect this will change but I have no idea when.

In the meantime I think you'll need a Windows tablet. I'm not sure if the new Windows RT tablets will work on Facebook games but my guess is they will. I'd check that before considering RT though. I am pretty sure the tablets with full Windows, either 7 or 8, will work.


In reply to an earlier post on Nov 26, 2012 11:31:46 AM PST
C. Johnson says:
Thanks for your input - I've been looking at Playbook for the very reasons you state. A couple questions, tho: (1) can a cell phone be tethered to a Playbook? and if so, does it have to be a Blackberry? and (b) why are the unlimited data plans for Blackberry/Playbook devices more expensive than those for other OS?

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 26, 2012 11:49:34 AM PST
B. Marks says:
I don't know much about cellular tech but I don't think there's any reason tethering won't work with the Playbook. I think it's a feature your phone and carrier has to support. But that's just my memory of posts I've read. It's not really my area.

I'd think carefully before getting a Playbook. It's completely dependant on the Blackberry app store which has a very small selection. I have one and even though it's probably the best tablet I have in terms of hardware and interface, it's just not very useful to me. I can easily get apps to do the things I want on other tablets but there's just not much available for the Playbook.

Another problem is support. Blackberry sells phones through carriers and depends on them as the first contact point for support. But with the Playbook there is no carrier involved and there's no-one to call if you have a problem.

If you're happy with the apps that come with it you sure can't get a better deal on a tablet than a Blackberry. And there are a few more apps you can buy, just not many. The quality of the apps it comes with is excellent. The quality if the apps available to add to it is not very good and they tend to cost about twice as much as Android apps, even if they're the same app.

They made it easy for developers to port Android apps to the thing but not many have been interested and it barely made a difference.


In reply to an earlier post on Nov 26, 2012 2:54:28 PM PST
joy says:
don't buy it, mine worked for a while then quit, I sent it back.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 26, 2012 3:15:08 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Nov 26, 2012 3:58:35 PM PST
FAL says:
For true notetaking and typing, the best is the 599.99 Surface RT w/ touch cover or the 445.99 Ultrabooks. http://www.ebay.com/itm/Toshiba-U845-S402-14-Ultrabook-Core-i3-2377M-1-4GHz-4GB-500GB-HDD-16GB-SDD-/370699349094?PID=1225267&campid=5335869999&afepn=5335869999

The Transformer series keyboard and BT keyboards are for very light and comprised typing. Get the RT or ultrabook for full featured typing experience w/o the hassle of Android OS.
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Discussion in:  Tablet forum
Participants:  23
Total posts:  49
Initial post:  Nov 23, 2012
Latest post:  Jul 2, 2013

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