Coffee Talk #491: Where is the Tablet Love?

Like Hulkamania before it, tablet-mania is running wild. Apple is selling millions of iPads. Amazon is selling millions of Kindle Fires. Millions of Android fans were thrilled by yesterday’s announcement of the Google Nexus 7. Yet for some reason, many of you RPadholics aren’t down with tablet computing. Why is that?

Welcome to Coffee Talk! Let’s start off the day by discussing whatever is on your (nerd chic) mind. Every morning I’ll kick off a discussion and I’m counting on you to participate in it. If you’re not feelin’ my topic, feel free to start a chat with your fellow readers and see where it takes you. Whether you’re talking about videogames, He-Man and the Masters of the Universe, the $1,500 price tag for Google Glass, or peach jelly vs. strawberry jelly, Coffee Talk is the place to do it.

Like Hulkamania before it, tablet-mania is running wild. Apple is selling millions of iPads. Amazon is selling millions of Kindle Fires. Millions of Android fans were thrilled by yesterday’s announcement of the Google Nexus 7. Yet for some reason, many of you RPadholics aren’t down with tablet computing. Why is that?

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again — the iPad is the most life-changing piece of consumer electronics I’ve purchased since TiVo. The versatility, power, and convenience is brilliant! There’s so much I can do on the iPad, for pleasure and business. I can play games, listen to music, bust out long emails, browse the Internetz, write long articles, read comic books, watch videos, watch Brazzers, edit images, update this very web site, and so much more. Tablet computing blends the power of desktop/laptop computers and the portability of smartphones in a delightfully amazing way.

Off the top of my head, only a few of you are down with tablet computing. RPadholics smartguy and tokz come to mind. A few of you, like Big Blak and Nightshade, are borderline anti-tablet. Whether you love tablets, hate them, or suffer from tablet-computing ennui, I’d leave to hear your thoughts on tablet computing. Fire away in the comments section (please)!

Author: RPadTV

45 thoughts on “Coffee Talk #491: Where is the Tablet Love?”

  1. BRAZZERS!!!!!

    I finally used Garageband on an iPad 2. It was fun and somewhat limited but you can still produce some quality songs with it. I really love the built in sampler.

    For me it boils down to this with tablets. Is it a necessity (no) and can I afford one at this time (no)? I understand the appeal of them but my tech life is just fine without a tablet. Until those two questions have the answer of yes I will be tablet free.

  2. I'm not completely against tablets, but at the same time, I don't really need one. It's just a luxury to me at this point (a $600+ luxury, no less). I understand everything that you can do with it, but I'm doing just fine with my five-year-old MacBook Pro. The only thing that you can argue is that tablets are slightly more convenient than laptops because of their form factor.

    My biggest problem with tablets (or rather, the iPad) is it's closed architecture. It's just a useful toy that allows me to spend more money on the software/apps. Do you have a CD or DVD? I can use my optical drive to listen/view it. Tablet? No. You have to use a separate computer to get your content on your tablet OR buy it again. Strike one. I have files, photos, torre- er,… "borrowed" entertainment I have on a flash drive that I can easily transfer to another computer. Tablet? No. Again, you have to not only go through a computer, but now you have to buy various apps to view all of the different files you have. In addition, more robust programs as well as multiple programs can't be handled by a tablet. You need the muscle of a proper laptop or PC for that. The majority of the people in my office could never use a tablet for work because the accounting program that is the backbone of our company could not run on it.

    As far as games go, I understand that there are a lot of games that use your fingers and the accelerometer in intuitive ways, but ultimately, I've found that a lot of other games (like those that use a "virtual control pad" and "virtual buttons" to be lacking. "Virtual controls" are not as good as an actual control pad, plus, they make you cover up and smudge parts of the screen. This may seem like a small gripe, but it's happened to me that a few times when I am so engrossed in a game, I lose sight of the virtual buttons and my fingers/thumbs "wander". When I go to tap these buttons, I find that my finger is not on them and I mess up. I have to be constantly shifting my focus from the actual game, to the buttons. Strike two.

    Lastly, there are people out there like my wife who perfer the tactile feel of the keyboard for writing. I can average about 50-60 wpm when typing on a keyboard since I never have to look at it. With a virtual keyboard, I have to "guess" where the letters are if I am to simply focus on my typing and not look at the keys every time I have to tap them. On a tablet, I'm lucky to get to 25 wpm. Strike three.

    Crow all you want about tablets. I wouldn't mind having one if I was rich or if I happen to get one for free. They seem pretty convenient for web browsing and other simple stuff, but ultimately, I would want the versatility of a laptop (or desktop) over the portability of a tablet. Because I don't travel much (I am content with a book or my DS when I do), I may not be the proper target market for the product. I use my iPhone primarily for phone calls, texting and looking up random information. I "big iPhone without the phone part" is not my idea of a useful "can't-live-without-it" product. It would be nice to have and play around with every now and then, but I can't justify so much money for such a trivial luxury.


    P.S. Also, I think we should stop giving Brazzers so much publicity, less they start advertising with you… or at the very least, get one of their “models” to become a regular poster to this site. ;)

    1. I certainly understand the appeal of the tablet. But I just feel like they're not really for me and what I would use it for.

      I tend to agree with Iceman's points about virtual controls. They're not precise enough for my taste. The screen is bigger than your traditional handheld though, so that is points in it's favor. But when it comes to games, I'm console first, PC second, and handhelds of any kind are a distant 3rd. That's juts my personal gaming preference.

      Additionally, I tend to not like the touch keyboard interface on most tablets I've tried. A traditional keyboard just works better for me. As such, I'm just more of a laptop guy for my computing needs. And most new laptops are pretty thin and relatively portable. The only real issue is with battery life vs being plugged in, which depending on the tablet can be up or down as well.

  3. My camp runs in Icemanland here (which isn't Iceland, but would literally be in one of the hottest parts of the country, yet he's still Iceman… Maybe Iron(ic) Man is better suited).

    I've tried using a tablet to remote in and use photoshop… It's just not happening. Using an iPad as like a Wacom tablet is another thing… But why not just get a Wacom tablet?

    At this point for me, it's a luxury and not a necessity (like BB said).

      1. Seriously… I've looked around too. None of them nor several of them combined can really achieve alot of the stuff I need to do. They're like bits and pieces of general touch-up stuff and no real meat to any of them.

      2. Yes, but think about what "you" need to do and what most people do with an image editor. I also think you're being dismissive. Filterstorm lets you do quite a bit.

      3. Dude… I was talking about what “I” need to do the whole time which doesn't require “me” to have a tablet.

  4. Chrome for ios thought: why won't the address bar disappear like Safari?
    I can't tell a speed or performance difference.

  5. Love my iPad. My iPad (first gen) replaced my MacBook. I still have an iMac and a PC but a lot of my general browsing and reading is on the iPad. I will always own a tablet and a desktop or docked laptop.

  6. I cant afford one!!!

    I'd love to have one though.

    On a seperate note. If i have to hear one more of my upper middle class, conservative friends, complain about paying for poor people's medical benefits, I may jump through a 5th story window. Wouldn't it just save time to admit that you have no idea what the specifics of "Obamacare" entail, and admit that the reason You would never support any plan he endorses, is because he is black? If your football team drafts a QB, and you don't like it, don't you still want the guy to succeed? How about your President? You want the President to fail? I live in Virginia. People here REALLY think this way, and it is maddening.

    end rant.

    1. I think healthcare is such a large monster of an industry that anyone who thinks they can solve the problems (POTUS included) with a piece of legislation is blowing smoke up your ass. Do you want him to succeed? That's a relative scenario honestly. Not everyone agrees on policies and plans pursued by an elected servant and therefore hope some initiatives fail. That' why we vote every 4 years. Then again voting seems to mean less and less these days (not talking about the electoral college, I like that)

      1. I may sound like a conspiracy theorist here, but with Superpac money financing the entire political system, Corporate control over the legislative and executive branches will only get much worse. The office of the POTUS doesn't appear to have the power that once came with it. Washington is a free for all.

        As far as wanting the prez to fail…it isnt just Obamacare. I know you are in the south as well, so you have to deal with both liberal and conservative bullshit in full force, like I do…I am just really sick of idiots with opinions.

      2. I can't even have a reasonable debate with some of my friends on the subject (or really, any political subject), because it devolves into one of three prongs of attack:

        1: You hate America and don't understand what freedom is.
        2: Obama is the Anti-Christ/not an American.
        3: I'm comfortable in my absolute certainty in one political party over the other, so suck my dick.

        Yep…That's the problem with this country right there.

        The sad thing is, in one past life or another I actually used to like some of these people. Yet I find my friends list getting smaller by the day because the wanton ignorance of those who won't even discuss an issue without calling you both a nazi and a communist without even realizing that they come from completely different political paradigms (but hey, never let facts get in the way of a good diatribe, right?).

    2. I actually have read a few hundred pages of the actual document (Patient Protection & Affordable Care Act) and will be reading the SC's ruling a bit later. What I can tell you from the little I have read: it is bad. Really bad. (read it for yourself:…. The best analogy that I can come up with is that this law is like feeding little kids candy (laced with a little bit of crack) for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

      Anyway, don't get me started.


      1. I agree that isn't the best solution.

        I sort of want to get you started….not to argue with you, but to learn specifics. From my understanding, those people with health care already will not be taxed. Those who do not have health care will be taxed up to 1 percent of their salary. Those people who make slightly above poverty who do not opt for insurance, will be penalized, but that penalty will be made up for in tax breaks….Is this wrong? I may need you to sit me down and slowly and gingerly explain this to me, much the same way Danny Tanner used to talk to Michelle during an episode of full house, complete with the poignant, yet assuring background music.

        The good part about being independent/atheist is you can change your mind pretty easily about most things.

      2. It depends on what your healthcare is valued at if you will be taxed on your health benefits in the future. For an individual the figure is 10.2k for your health benefit. You will be taxed at 40% of the value that exceeds the threshold. For other than single it is 20k I believe.

        The government does fine with roads, fire dept, and police…but you can't walk into a post office and think this plan will be as smooth as presented.

        [youtube 8ZuVvpdTu1s youtube]

      3. The thing that most of my "friends" seem to have a problem with is the individual mandate. Ironically, when you point out to them that that idea was cooked up by the conservative Heritage Foundation in the 90's and actually introduced in a couple of bills by Republicans during the Clinton Administration, complete with links to a FOX News article that backs up your point, it tends to blow their fragile little minds a la Cartman's reaction to the Terrance and Phillip Movie – complete with a subsequent amount of creative uses of profanity.

      4. Yeah the mandate is pretty terrible. At least Roberts called it what it is…a tax.It is the same old song and dance when it comes to showing which major party did what when and where. My favorite personally is listening to someone rant about democrats pro minority agenda while forgetting that democrats ran the south back in the day…Dixiecrats they were known as then.This sounds so bad but I tend to just ignore ppl like that who cling to one side no matter what.Sent from a device with horrible AT&T service.

      5. True, but the old Dixiecrat sentiment is pretty much the Republican party line these days. That's why the party split and 3/4's of the southern Democrats joined the Republican Party thanks to Nixon's Southern Strategy.

      6. The real trick was convincing ppl there is a difference between the two major parties. Then again the average voter is a moron so it probably wasn't as hard as I give them credit for.

        Republicans have been deregulating (creating monopolies and duopolies) touting the free market. Those super high barriers to entry really aren't helping anyone…nor are the companies who refuse to compete.
        Democrats have been screwing poor ppl since the Great Society telling them they will make them rich.

        Then they go rub elbows at lavish parties laughing about it together.

      7. I love how over time we've come to hate both parties together from opposite ends of the political spectrum. I tend to agree with the democrats from a more philosophical standpoint, but it's been clear over the past few cycles that they're no better at running the country than the other guys.

  7. I'm not completely anti-tablet, as I love using my Kindle Fire, but there are still a lot of things I don't like about them and would prefer my laptop for. If I'm going to type anything more than 2-3 sentences I will just get up, go to the other room, and use my laptop to post whatever I wanted to post (or I just won't post anything). I don't see how people can use a touchscreen to type out everything without getting hurt. I've heard of some college students getting carpal tunnel from doing all their typing for class on an ipad, and honestly I'm surprised I haven't heard a lot more news on this subject. My fingers start to hurt after I use the touchscreen on my phone to type too much let alone send out dozens of emails or posts a day that way.

    I don't see this issue really changing, especially not anytime soon, and this is my second problem with tablets right now. My first issue with them is still the cost. $200 was good for my Kindle Fire, but I wouldn't dream of paying anything more than that unless I was extremely well off financially, which I'm not. Tablets are still luxury devices to me, albeit very nice luxury devices, but nowhere near a necessity to me at all.

    Also, I have found myself using the voice command on my phone constantly to speak out my texts rather than type them. In addition to that, the voice command on my phone kicks Siri's ass on my wife's 4s.

  8. Massachusetts has been doing this for the last 6 or 7 years so I am totally used to this new healthcare law. It's called MassHealth and it comes in different tiers. Prenatal, limited, and two that cover almost anything related to health, including dentists. Now, how many places accept MassHealth is a different question. I had private insurance and would always be seen before those that have MassHealth. It works but it ain't pretty, not at all. Oh and if you don't have any insurance back home be prepared to get raped with your tax return.

    1. But Romney says he's going to repeal it. but Mitt's idea is the exact same thing as Obama's idea. We know this because the health care bill was based off of the Massachusetts health care bill that Mitt signed into law. Unless it's not his idea anymore. Who knows what he actually believes in because I'm pretty sure Mitt Romney couldn't agree with himself about what he was having for lunch if it was still on his plate.

  9. I like tablets but I don't own one yet because I really don't need one. Right now my smartphone can do everything I may need to do on the go and most of all it fits in my front right pocket.

      1. Yeah, that was me. My how stupid do I feel for that. I don't know what I'd do without my smartphone now.

      2. For a lot of people, I think the tablet experience would be similar. On paper, it's hard to see what it offers that a laptop/phone combo can't provide. After getting accustomed to it, it's irreplaceable.

  10. I like using my tablet. It makes a lot of the basic Internet tasks more readily available to me. Unfortunately I hate how limited the hardware is. Not having a mic is very inconvenient and the lack of an external solution makes it worce.

    Sent from My Kindle Fire.

  11. Ive transferred most of my ultimate marvel comics on the ipad and it is awesome. The tablet rules for me because i dont have to wait for it to boot up or type as much because most websites have an app already.

    1. Since switching to SSD, I've forgotten what boot-up times were like. I recently had to use my old Windows laptop for something and I was getting annoyed at waiting for it to boot. 11 second boot-ups on my MacBook Pro completely rule!

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