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    • I bought my first tablet about 6 years ago, the original Nexus 7 by Google and Asus. It was also the only tablet I ever bought. Back then, I didn't really have that much of a use for it. I had my smartphone for mobile computing/connectivity and my laptop for more serious computing/productivity. The tablet fit somewhere in between, but ultimately it outlived its usefulness and I never bought another tablet. Many people probably felt the same way, as tablet shipments have been declining for 15 straight quarters now, with so signs of improving. As smartphones got bigger and laptops became thinner and thus more portable, perhaps people just no longer see a need for tablets.

      Having said that, I bought a tablet for my grandmother yesterday as requested by my mother, so we could video call her instead of just voice calls. The sales rep was telling me that the model I bought (Huawei MediaPad M3 Lite) was selling like hotcakes. People loved the fact that it wasn't too expensive, had a relatively high-res display, and dual speakers, making it great for media consumption. This got me thinking if I should give tablets another go. I definitely don't need one, but the inner child in me (and the adult geek) would love a new toy to play with.

      Do any of you currently own a tablet? How do you use it in your daily routines? If you don't have one, do you have any interest in getting one?

    • I tried 2 android tablets in the past, galaxy tab 10.1 (1st gen) and the nexus 7 (first gen). They were both pure crap. Since then I've been using mostly an iPad 4th gen and the iPad 2017. The iPad experience is very pleasant. The OS is fast fluid and responsive, especially with the latest swipe gestures. I would definitely recommend the iPad for anyone, including android phone users.

      You won't know what you're missing until you used one. Just like a smart watch, I never thought i need one, but once you have one, it's really hard to imagine life without it. At home, I always grab my iPad whenever I wana read Google Play Books, watch youtube videos or watch any downloaded movies (it's super easy to transfer any movie from PC to iPad and watch it on VLC player). It's also more comfortable to read any PDF files (e-magazines, or student's thesis/assignment, journals papers) on the ipad rather than on my laptop. the ipad screen ratio is similar to A4 size and you can basically "flip the page" rather than do vertical scrolling on a landscape monitor). Lastly, when wana view photos together with anyone, its great to view on the iPad using google photos, the 4:3 ratio is perfect since most phone camera capture pic in this 4:3 ratio.

      For the above activities, bigger screen is always better. For other activities like instagram, twitter, and facebook, i still prefer to use my phone. For some reason, i can type faster on my phone compared to the iPad despite its smaller keyboard.

      Another big benefit of the iPad, it's the perfect travel companion. The battery life can easily give you up to ~8 hours usage and the standby time can last for months. I always bring it for train or plane rides. When I arrive at my destination, I still have almost full battery on my phone for ride hailing apps. No worries at all.

      I got my mother an iPad and she never use her laptop ever since. She basically always on her ipad when she's at home. Easy to video call using facetime and iOS is very "old people friendly", which is good because I receive more calls from my mom asking me to solve her phone problem compared to tablet problem.

    • Like you, I bought the original Nexus 7 (2012) and loved it: big enough to do stuff that is hard to do on a phone, like writing longer texts (mails, docs, social, ...) or showing content to others (video, slides, ...) - but at the same time small enough to carry around in a backpack or coat pocket.

      I'm really missing this form factor, and would probably buy it again if there was a new, cheap device running a recent and somewhat "pure" Android version.

      What I'd prefer even more than that would be something like a "handheld Google Home": a 7-8" screen on a stand that behaves just like a Google Home Hub, but can be carried around the house like a tablet to watch Netflix or edit some calendar entries while not sitting at the desk.

    • I bought the same Nexus 7 a few days after it became available... but beyond initial tinkering it never found a place in my daily routine and workflows. So it gathered dust for couple years until I got it out, put LineageOS on it, and put it on the wall with a magnetic attachment, where it served as a household display of, well, stuff - Hue lights control, weather forecast and sensor data, occasionally Spotify control for harder to spell or non-English named tracks, etc.

      We also own an iPad 2, quite old by now, but it survived one kid, now a preteen, and might just live long enough to be owned by the next kid, currently a toddler :)

    • We went a little crazy with tablets to keep the kids from fighting over them, and then they kept getting better so we kept getting new ones. We have 3 iPad 2s which we never use (anyone want them?). They aren’t compatible with the latest iOS or games

      We have 2 Android tablets of different vintages which the kids would only use for a minute before deciding they hated them because of poor display performance. They gather dust.

      We have an iPad 3, which is the pad of last resort to use only when the iPad Pros are taken.

      And we have 2 iPad Pros, which everyone LOVES and fights over. Need more.

    • We have 2 Android tablets of different vintages which the kids would only use for a minute before deciding they hated them because of poor display performance. They gather dust.

      Stick them on a wall with this magnetic thingy, (or something similar) and that makes for a cheapish but effective wall display of pretty much anything you might want to, from to do/chores/shopping lists to sunset/sunrise times, to game scores to, well, your imagination's the only limit. Keeping them powered might take a bit of thought, though, but there's usually a spare outlet near the doors/exits where it makes sense to put them.

    • I have an iPad Air that has gone through several different "careers" over it's life. It started out a as work note taking tool for handwritten notes and PDF editing but eventually started doing less of that.

      Then it became the toddlers and kids' play thing with lots of children's apps that they enjoyed using but as time went on they transitioned to just using the same apps on my wife's and my phones.

      It's current life is as a substitute for on stage notes. When speaking I hate shuffling through papers and not being able to edit them on the fly if an idea pops into my head right before I go on stage. It's really convenient and fluid to use and though I get a lot of concerned statements about the fact that technology can fail on you at any moment I really have zero hesitation about relying on it even without a backup.

    • I have a super-old second generation iPad that I don't think is really working anymore. It takes a charge, but it's very difficult to get it to update with Netflix or Amazon Prime videos to watch on long journeys. I do have some eBooks on it as well, but it gets overwhelmed when I try to update various apps or programs.

    • I can definitely relate. We have our own version of planned obsolescence in our household where my wife and I use the latest and greatest and our old iPads are passed down to our two little girls. Right now I’m using the iPad Pro and loving it. My wife has one as well. My 7yr old is using an iPad Mini and my 3yr old is on a iPad 2 but she’s getting her own iPad Mini soon.

    • I have a 1st gen Nexus gathering dust - battery failure killed that long ago. I was an early adopter of that device.

      I currently am still using my 2nd generation Nexus 7. After a software update bricked it, I did managed to get into the queue to have it repaired back in 2015. Today, it's battery life isn't great, but it's still chugging along. It's primary use is bed-time reading, and listening to police scanner audio while falling asleep.

      My wife killed the Nexus 9 (I need a bigger screen) not long ago with a charging port issue (repair was prohibitively expensive...), so I purchased a Samsung Tab S2 from Costco not long ago.

      Now, she does use iPads at work...and I think she'd like one for home. However, since I'm the IT person here, and have never been an Apple probably won't happen.

    • Every night around 8 my wife says “I need some comedy! What do we have?”

      I grab the big iPad Pro and off we go to SNL, Colbert, Netflix, whatever for an hour-—in bed. The sound is amazing, the screen, the speed...

      Until this thread I never questioned why we don’t use the TV. I think it’s because it’s so quick to navigate from clip to clip and service to service. We’re twitchy, not always finishing a clip.

      We turn on the TV for longer shows where we’re sitting without all the navigation.

    • I think 80% of the time my wife uses her iPad Pro to watch shows. I can’t complain though because the rest of the time she’s using it with the Apple Pencil to design some pretty cool stuff.

    • My wife and I each have a Kindle Fire (HD 8) and they get steady use. We both use them as ebook readers and I play some (stupid) games on them. Most days I also read the Washington Post via their app. For anything that requires typing or otherwise more sophistication, I use my PC (like now). I don't have a smart phone, and no inclination to get one, but my wife has recently upgraded to an old Samsung model since the dumb phone she had was dying.

    • Have to admit I am a HUGE tablet fan as is everyone in this house. I use an Ipad pro 9.7 (older). I use it for emails, watching shows (in peace) and it leaves the TV available for sport. I tried the Galaxy tab but wasn't as happy. I do use a Kindle for reading at night - honestly it has fallen off the bed so often and still lives -- I know an ipad could not do that!

    • I haven't (yet) felt the need for a tablet. I use my phone when I am out wandering - and I suspect that I wouldn't carry a tablet with me.

      I have a Kindle for reading - but when I am out and have a need to read I use the Kindle app on my phone.

      I do have an early edition Microsoft Surface with Type Cover (running Windows 10) that goes with me when I travel. I can almost see using a tablet for travel but I would be unhappy without a keyboard since I usually write blog entries from the road.

    • I tend not to write when I'm out wandering.

      For notes when I'm away from my computer, I have used both Google Keep and Microsoft OneNote since entries made from my phone are available wherever I am logged in.

    • I have owned and used many tablets. My first was the Asus Transformer Pad TF300T. I fell in love with it watching the promo video. It's a convertible running Android and truth be told I rarely used it without the attachable keyboard (too heavy and awkward to use otherwise) unless I was playing certain games on it or reading e-books. My friends loved it too because the screen was relatively big and we could play fun multiplayer games. I also sometimes brought it with me at school to take notes at a class where the teacher would speak way too fast for me to be able to take handwritten notes. It started as kind of a joke/dare. I told the teacher she should speak more slowly because we don't have time to take notes and she replied "then you just write too slowly" to which I replied "well, I type really fast though; if I only I were allowed to bring my laptop" and she said "ok, bring it if you think you'll be able to take notes then." And that's exactly what I did. During breaks, my friends and I played games on it too. The battery was great and unlike a laptop, the tablet was always on and didn't make any noise. Eventually it became too slow and old to use. I still have it. It's running a custom Marshmallow ROM (it shipped with Honeycomb :) )

      Then the Galaxy Note 8.0. That was my favorite device until I got the iPad Pro 2017 a few months ago. It's because I used it to draw though. It was small enough to take with me everywhere and hold it comfortably with one hand (using the other hand to draw.) I made some great pieces on it and took lots of notes with screenshots and stuff, to study other people's art. The OS was well optimized for that kind of thing.

      Then I got the iPad Pro like I mentioned above and now that is my favorite device. I love tablets. I prefer small phones because I have small hands (ironically I have a Galaxy Note 9 because it allows me to draw on the go) so tablets used to have a big advantage over my phones. Even now that phones are larger, it's still way easier and more productive to draw on a large screen. I'm not sure I'd like tablets that much if I didn't draw. I know they'd still be great for watching videos and reading e-books. Battery life is a big plus when compared to "real" computers too and they are just very convenient to use all the time as long as you aren't trying to do something too advanced.

    • anna, you are such an interesting writer! Everything you said about tablets applies to me except I have never been able to draw. It's embarrassing to watch people who make it look so easy and then I try and it's nothing like their drawings. I can't even grasp how they learned to do it.

      Can you share some of your art? I'm dying to see.

    • Thank you for your kind words 🙏 I see someone created a thread about digital art after reading this comment, so I'll be sure to post some there!

      When you say, that everything applies to you, you mean you've been using tablets for drawing, albeit with no success (at least in you opinion)? The truth is, it's just like everyone says: it's all about practice. Personally I've had an inclination to draw since I was really young, but it does come down to practice and noticing the little things. I often watch people and draw them in my head. I mean, I imagine drawing their features, that forces me to pay attention. Later, when I try to draw a person from memory, it all comes back :)

    • I can’t complain though because the rest of the time she’s using it with the Apple Pencil to design some pretty cool stuff.

      Does your wife design amazing cakes? Why am I thinking this?