Microsoft Tablet: Plan B?

December 10, 2012

By Doug Miller

With the recent launch of Windows 8 and Windows RT, it appears the jury is still out on how well these two new platforms will do in the tablet space. I have to say as an early x86-based Windows 8 tablet user there are definitely pros and cons of Windows 8. For example, while it is nice that you can run legacy Windows apps on Windows 8, running these on a tablet is not always the greatest experience since fat fingers don’t do as good a job with traditional Windows apps as a mouse and keyboard. Even Microsoft’s own Office 2013, which uses the old Windows user interface for Outlook, Word and Excel, feels awkward on a Windows 8 tablet.
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Tablets: RIP?

September 22, 2012

By Doug Miller

Being constantly connected is critical for my work so when I was leaving for a 4 day business trip recently, I looked at my arsenal of devices and selected a range of connectivity solutions that would give me lots of options for keeping in touch. As I walked out to the door to the airport, I had the following in my carry-on bag:

  • An HTC Titan II Windows Phone with LTE on AT&T’s network which also was enabled as a mobile wireless hotspot when needed.
  • A Samsung Galaxy Tab 7.7 Android-based tablet with LTE on Verizon’s network and also capable of being a mobile wireless hotspot.
  • A small Acer notebook computer running Windows 7
  • An Intel-based tablet computer running Windows 8 RTM
  • A 3G USB stick that connects to AT&T’s HSPA+ network which can be used with either of my Windows devices
  • A Sprint 3G/4G Overdrive portable wireless hotspot device

I have a first generation, WiFi-only iPad but decided to leave that at home.

So what did I find worked best to keep me connected?
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Galaxy Tab Tune-up

April 6, 2012

By Doug Miller

One of my favorite devices is my now ancient Samsung Galaxy Tab which runs Android Gingerbread. This is the original 7 inch Tab and in fact I bought it from an online store in the UK well before it was available in the US. I got the international GSM version and this device not only has a full-time 3G data capability but it also makes phone calls as a cell phone. It has worked fine on AT&T and I even occasionally use it as a cell phone with a Bluetooth headset. I pop in a Virgin Mobile Canada SIM chip when I travel to Canada and can use the device without incurring roaming charges. I love the size, the instant on and the full time connection to the net no matter where I am. While I have an iPad I almost never use it. It is too big for me as a portable device. Same goes for my Windows Tablet – not quite instant on yet and a way too big for throwing in my coat pocket as I run out the door. Hopefully when Windows 8 launches there will be devices similar to the form factor of the 7 inch Galaxy Tab.

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