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Saturday
Sep242011

Whither tablets for a smartphone/laptop user?

I'm on a different Tablet Quest from most folks (surprised?).  

I've bought and returned a Motorola, Samsung, HTC and now Lenovo tablet. I'm searching for relevance in a tablet for a person with a 4.5" smartphone and a 14" very thin and light laptop (Lenovo T420s), and so far I haven't found it.

Actually, that's probably not true - the new HTC Jetstream from AT&T is probably "it" but it just costs so much that even *I'm* put off!

Here's what I want:

General, fully functional Android tablet, blah, blah blah.  That's a given. Each one I've bought so far is that.

BUT, to make it a relevant tool, I need to have it, finally, be the thing that productively (read: thoroughly, efficiently and pleasantly) replaces paper in the last place where my smartphone and laptop can't: meetings! In meetings, whether corporate or client, whether formal or informal, whether personal, volunteer or employee, stuff needs to be taken, used, reviewed, and, ideally, marked up during the meeting. Try that on a smartphone and laptop. Can't do it (remembering my three criteria, above). I nearly always either reach for blank paper (to draw a picture or rough something out), take paper stuff with me (to markup for discussion, editing, revision, etc.), or feel that I'm missing part of the experience if I have just my phone and laptop. An Android tablet on which I could write like the HTC (that's why the Galaxy tab and Xoom went back), might just do this if it's a) big enough to show an 8.5x11 page adequately (that's why the Flier went back) and b) allows pretty much global inking (that's why the Lenovo tablet went back).

I'm just not (yet) willing to pay the exorbitant price they're asking for the Jetstream, although as I flesh out my ideas, above, I find myself wanting the Jetstream, tomorrow! I assume, though, the price with drop either 1) because nobody will buy it (like the Xoom) or 2) because a wifi-only version will come out or 3) because they'll decide they've soaked the early adopters who are even sillier than I am, and are ready to sell it to everyone else.

Time will tell! It's a fun playground!

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