|iPhone 5s, Kindle Fire 7, iPad Air, Samsung 12.2-inch|
I've written several post begging, cajoling, pleading, threatening, trying to bribe, manufacturers, especially Apple, for making a larger tablet, for reading art books, text books, comics, and anything more complex than pure text books with small illustrations.
OK, Samsung came first. But so far the news is very very good: I have been testing it for my most important apps in these areas for the last two hours since I got it, and there have so far been no major bugs, in fact it's been a pleasure... finally, the 12-inch tablet is here!
Wow. I'm creaming my... bagels, I'm creaming my sauce, I'm creaming my coffee, I love this.
Magazine pages in Zinio, art books in Google Books, and comics in Comixology... in all of them I can now with more or less ease, and for the first time, read a full page with illustration and texts without zooming in.
[Ping: Apple, this is the challenge of the year for you, not that durn online watch or whatever it is people are waiting for. This will be important for many more reasons than just reading. Not the least in productivity.]
The Samsung Galaxy Note 12.2-inch tablet does not even feel very big or heavy. It is only as big and heavy as an iPad Air would be if it was a 12-inch device. And it is only a hair thicker. It is beautiful.
[Oh, and by a miracle, it fits in my big Flote tablet floor stand. It fits exactly, it could not have been one milimeter wider! Huh.]
And the screen... almost exactly the same number of pixels as my Apple 30-inch Cinema Display! At 12 inches, this is one seriously high-resolution device, trust me. (I just wish my eyes were like they were when I was a kid, again. But even with middle-aged eyes, this thing is booootiful.)
[Update hours later: I have often mentioned my dislike of the buggy Android OS. Well, either they have pulled off a miracle with version 4.04, or with this device, or I have become mentally more tech-friendly or something. But I've been using this thing now for hours, and there has not been a bug worth mentioning. Using the tablet is smooth, and the bigger screen, like always, enhances the experience. It's actually almost as fun as using the iPad the first time. Maybe not, but I'm having so much fun playing with, setting up, and using this tablet that it's already well past my bed time. After all the disappointments in the past, I would never have thought that could happen with an Android device.]
Reading comics on this device once again gives me that unexpected experience in digital media: it is not only as good as reading them on paper, it is better. If you need you can still zoom in instead of straining your eyes. You don't need to arrange for good light on the page, the tablet takes care of that. The colors are better, a good screen has a far better color range (gamut) than normal print, better even than high-end print. And even the sharpness is better than print.
And even here, early in the game of such devices, it's not very expensive, it's roughly the same as the (smaller) iPad costs.
(I would have preferred a large iPad since Android has bugged me before, but so far things seem to be going really well with this one, maybe Google or Samsung has upped their game considerably.)
I'll say e-reading and "tabletting" is coming of age.