Saturday, July 16, 2011

The Satellite: Extra Storage for Tablets on the Go

The Satellite: Extra Storage for Tablets on the Go, article and video.

It's a good idea: a hard disk which connects via wifi (since most tablets and such don't have USB). The technology seems to be a bit limited so far (you can't be connected with the drive and the Internet at the same time for example), but this is definitely one of the ways pointing out of the limited storage issue on tablets. (Apart from falling prices of solid storage, but Apple and others seem reluctant to give up on the gold mine of charging $100 for $17 worth of extra storage, so that may not go so fast.)

iPad audio tip

iPad can play background audio from various apps, tip.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Ch-ch-changes in the market

The ebook market is changing like gangbusters. I heard on the (warmly recommended) Kindle Chronicles podcast that as recently as a few months ago, if an author dumped the price of a book temporarily to zero or one dollars, he was virtually assured of selling hundreds or thousands of copies in a short order of time. But now so many are doing this, it has become virtually pointless for the author. (For the reader, hey, bonanza.)

Prices are all over the map, as are sizes and everything else variable. It'll be interesting to see what the market looks like when it has stabilized a little bit, say in ten years. If something as volatile as bits for dollars can ever really stabilize...

Monday, July 11, 2011

"Not impressed by the concept"

I have an old friend, a businessman, who is successful enough and just curious enough that of course he has an iPad. But, like I half suspected: he is not all that impressed with it, or with the whole tablet concept.
To me it seemed funny at first: who can't love an iPad? It's like not liking ice cream or sunsets or kittens.
But it makes sense, I think. You'll notice that even when working on an iPad, you do it in a more relaxed way than when on a computer. Often leaned back. But my friend is not the type who does that, he is not a "leaned back" type of person. When he works, he works! And he needs a full, professional machine for it. And when he doesn't work, he's sky-diving or scuba-diving, or zipping around Europe on a 1100cc motorbike (despite being a head smaller than me). He is not idling in a bean chair idly browsing web sites or playing games.

Too good to be true? (Updated, I got mine)

What is this then? A real 7-inch Android tablet with color- and touch-screen, wifi and all, for 98 dollars? The iMito definitely seems too good to be true, but it has good reviews. (Oddly, I can't find it on Amazon US, but I did find it (and buy it) as Tabtech M009S on Am UK.)

Compare it to the brand new Google reader device: too boring to not be true. It looks just like a Kindle, only 1.5 generations behind. I'd like to know what their thinking is behind this, who would be interested in it? For the same price, why not just buy a Kindle, which has a proven track record, a huge book selection behind it, and millions of highly enthusiastic users...

Stephen said:

Not a scam, just a cheap tablet. Resistive touch screen, Telechips TCC8902 chipset limited memory. Not particularly bad either, if you are ok with the resolution (slightly problematic for manga, fine for reading) and don't mind a resistive touchscreen. 
The TCC8902 chipset is surprisingly quick and decodes anything you can throw at it. The downside is that the TCC8902 has horrid power management so expect crappy battery life.
All told a decent tablet for secondary use.
Note that Daily Deals has the Sylvania 7" for $80 today and woot had the quite serviceable Archos 7" Home Tablet for about $80.
Basically pretty mainline for last years "Shenzen" tablets. Better units are presently available for ~$100 new right now. 
These tablets are fine personal media players, e book players, alarm clocks etc. They offer a decent luminous screen and function well. For home use when a charger is at hand they are excellent.
I've given quite a few of these to friends with rave reviews.
Tablets are not particularly expensive, and next years ~$100 will be smack dab in the "good enough" column.

I got mine. It's not bad. If I consider it without taking the low price into consideration, I'd give it a C-. If I do take the price into consideration, I'd give it a B+. Pretty amazing. 

It's all plastic of course. The resistive screen which demands harder presses than an iPad screen, takes getting used to. You can't really "tap", you have to press. 
I think the price and size makes it a good take-anywhere unit, it fits in a large pocket, and if it's stolen or lost it's $100, not 300 or 500. (Modified by reported low battery life, which I haven't tested yet.)