Anyone using a Windows tablet?

Discussion in 'hardware' started by pajenn, Jun 29, 2014.

  1. pajenn

    pajenn Registered Member

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    I'm curious about how people like their Windows tablets or tablet laptops compared to iPad and Android tablets (because I'm about to buy one)?

    I also have a few really basic questions:
    - Are the metro screen apps different from the Win 8.1 "desktop" apps, or are you just launching Windows programs from a different screen? For example, skype or firefox.
    - When I boot and use the Win 8.1 tablet from the metro screen, has it already loaded all the auto-load apps I would normally have in Windows desktop like the firewall and antivirus?
    - Any recommendations for Windows apps? (if somehow different from regular Windows programs).
    - I use SwiftKey on my Android devices (it's a keyboard app that learns and predicts words and offers swyping capability too and has good layouts for typing with 2 thumbs) - what's a good alternative for Windows touchscreens?

    Background for anyone interested: I already have an android phone and tablet (but the tab is first generation Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1, so it's getting old), and I want a tablet with USB and HDMI ports and proper Microsoft Office so I can give Powerpoint and other presentations without compatibility issues and without having to lug around my large 17" power laptop. I've read that you can give Powerpoint presentations from Android phones/tablet too, but I think it would be complicated... Also, I'm curious to test a Windows tablet for myself. I'm planning to pick up a Sony VAIO Tap 11, which is technically an 11.6" ultrabook, but basically it's just a Windows 8 tablet with a separate, thin keyboard that you can leave home (the USB and HDMI ports and everything else are in the tablet part). I can get the i5 processor version of it for 700 € (minus taxes), which makes it the best deal in that price range in my region, at least given my preferences, even though it has its short-comings (keyboard is crap because doesn't snap onto the screen and has short battery life, no 3 or 4G, crap pen holder location, only comes in black color, ...)
     
  2. aigle

    aigle Registered Member

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    First of all, why half of the post is in small print?

    I have Lenovo Miix 2 8. It's 8 inch, more portable than 10 inch but I think my next buy would be a 10 inch tablet with a keyboard dock. Dock makes a lot of things easier like extra ports, windows imaging n recovery etc. However I am quite happy with my current choice.

    Compared to android tablets and iPad, I prefer windows tablet. I mainly use it for surfing so it's portable and light, metro IE is quite good. When I am bored I go to desktop side and install and try software as I like. I have even win7 installed in VBox and it's amazingly smooth enough for testing. I hate iPad due to the difficulty you encounter while transferring data too and from an iPad. However windows app store still lags behind significantly as compared to play store and apple app store but to me it's not significant.

    However compared to iPad I found a big drawback in windows tablet. Try drain battery power even when they are in sleep mode. I used to have iPad, I will be browsing it ad then sleep. IPad will turn off itself and next morning when I will wake up and try to use it, it wild be still alive with good amount of battery power left. On the contrary, when I try to use my windows tablet next day, it's usually dead. If I am not mistaken I have read somewhere that it's a flaw in win tablets that will be fixed by MS later. When? I have no idea. May be that had already fixed it in their belief! I am not sure about all this issue. I have got a simple workaround fr this issue, when I am drowsy while surfing at night and about to sleep, I just shutdown( rather than auto- sleep) my tablet by few finger strokes before putting it on my bedside.

    Now your other Qs:

    1. They are different
    2. I guess they must have loaded as windows has loaded already, however the icons in tray area might take some time to appear. It's pretty much just like any windows, say even XP. Really I could not understand your concern by this Q.
    3. None as I have installed very few. You have to search the Store and try the apps or Google it.
    4. It's still not there in windows phone even but I read somewhere that it's coming to windows phone. Windows tablets will still have to wait I guess.
     
    Last edited: Jun 29, 2014
  3. aigle

    aigle Registered Member

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    Why did you chose for Tap 11? It's really beautiful but I read on the internet that its battery life is horrible. Please make sure before you buy. Battery life is an extremely important consideration to me while buying any portable device. Also it's way expensive. Have a look on Lenovo Miix 10. I must had bought it but it's not available here so far. Other option is Asus Transformer T100. Lenovo probably has some other 10 inch tablets as well with keyboard dock. Google them please.
     
  4. pajenn

    pajenn Registered Member

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    T100 and Miix 10 are a little smaller and less powerful than I want. However, I did look at the Lenovo Miix-2 11.6" and Asus Transformer T300 (13.3" display), but both are almost 30% more expensive than the Tap 11 (although they also come with 256 GB SSD instead of that Sony Tap's 128 GB, otherwise similar specs). The Miix-2 looks nice and if I could get it for the same price as the Tap 11 (which I probably could if they sold the 128 GB SSD version here), then I'd probably go for it because of the better keyboard and (possible) SIM card slot. However, the battery life should be same as with the Tap 11 because both have the same display size with same processors and same battery size.
     
  5. pajenn

    pajenn Registered Member

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    Sorry for the small print. I sometimes use it for secondary info that I assume most people don't want to read, so as not make the post look too long and intimidating for people to bother with, or to detract from the main point.

    Thanks for the answers.
     
  6. aigle

    aigle Registered Member

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  7. aigle

    aigle Registered Member

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    BTW are you happy with battery life of tap 11?
     
  8. aigle

    aigle Registered Member

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  9. pajenn

    pajenn Registered Member

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    They claim these tablet-laptops are good for "up to 8 hours (WiFi browsing)," but in practice I'd expect half that, especially when watching videos (probably less on full screen brightness), and then after a few years of use I'll probably get about 2 hours of video watching. That's what I currently get out of my Samsung tablet, although it used to last longer. If I can replace the battery then I'll be happy. Otherwise, it's disappointing, but not unexpected. I'd prefer a longer battery life (even if that meant a slightly heavier device due to bigger battery), but it should last long enough for my primary needs i.e. giving presentations - and also I don't see better alternatives in this regard within devices with similar specs. On long flights I expect the battery to die while I watch videos (just like my android tablet dies) and then I'll have to switch to my Android phone, which has a 6.1" screen so that's okay.

    The thing about metro vs. desktop programs is still a little unclear to me. For example, do I have to install Skype twice on a Windows 8 tablet; once for metro, once for desktop? Are they both going to running simultaneously or how do they work together? If I install firefox on the tablet, and then launch it from the metro screen, is it running a different instance of firefox than if I launch it from desktop screen?
     
  10. J_L

    J_L Registered Member

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    No, just install which version you want. They are separate full programs for different environments. If you install the desktop version, the metro screen icon will simply be a shortcut that switches to the desktop opening the desired program.
     
  11. aigle

    aigle Registered Member

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    Yep
     
  12. aigle

    aigle Registered Member

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    I saw it mentioned 6 hours. Also I don't like the fact that it's not fanless. Any tablet must be fanless IMO.

    However I do accept that it's one if the most stylish and beautifully crafted tablets.
     
    Last edited: Jul 1, 2014
  13. Aryeh Goretsky

    Aryeh Goretsky Security Expert

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    Hello,

    I have a Samsung Series 7 Slate (x86-64, Windows 8.1) and a Lenovo Yoga 11 (ARM, Windows 8.1 RT), plus some additional laptops equipped with touchscreens of various kinds. In response to your questions:
    1. Modern Windows (nee Metro) apps are largely-focused on having a touch-first experience. Keyboard and mouse input still work, as do styli for apps that support them (note taking, drawing, etc.). Office 2013 is alike on both platforms, though.
    2. The security software initializes when the computer boots up, just like under older versions of Windows. Windows RT only supports Windows Defender, though.
    3. The Amazon and Nook apps are nice if you like to read ebooks. Other than that, well, it really depends on what sort of apps you are looking for. I mainly use Microsoft Office.
    4. I have not seen any alternative keyboard apps for Modern Windows.
    Regards,

    Aryeh Goretsky
     
  14. pajenn

    pajenn Registered Member

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    I saw one in a shop (available for testing) and I liked the look of it a lot, but the main selling point was actually the price.

    I hadn't thought about the fan, but apparently it's there to keep the i5 processor cool. I assume other tablet-laptops with similar processors also need it. Obviously needing one is a minus, but a powerful processor is a plus, so... Anyway, I'm still leaning towards the Sony Tap 11 with i5 processor and 128 GB SSD because at 700 € I think it's the best value for money in my country. With an Intel pentium processor (1.2 GHz) I could get it for 600 €. The Lenovo Miix-2 11.6" with i5 processor and 256 GB SSD would be 900 €, which was a bit more than I was planning to spend. Or I could go cheap with the Miix-2 10.1", which has 64 GB eMMC and atom processor for 450 €, but I dunno - I'm worried 64 GB wouldn't be enough space, and that eMMC+atom would be significantly slower combo than SSD+i5 - also smaller model has no USB 3.0 port so backups to external (USB 3.0 compatible) drive would be slower.
     
  15. aigle

    aigle Registered Member

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    Interestingly the microUSB 2 port on my 8 inch windows tablet doesn't provide enough power to run a portable HD. I never knew it before buying the tablet.
     
  16. tobacco

    tobacco Frequent Poster

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    While searching for a new android tablet, i found this tablet http://us.acer.com/ac/en/US/content/series/iconiaw7 on sale for $509 CA plus taxes and am thrilled with it. A windows 8.1 computer in tablet form with great accessories! And the processor was actually i5 3337 1.8 GHz. Has a fan but is dead quiet.

    Only cons i can list is:

    - heavier than your average tablet
    - battery life less than i expected but not a deal breaker for me ( 4-7 hours depending on how much video watched )
    - 64GB SSD version (mine) won't leave you a ton of free space but not a deal breaker for me as it's easy to just plug in a thumb/external drive.

    This rig is fast and the HD screen is beautiful!!!
     
  17. aigle

    aigle Registered Member

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    @pajenn

    Hi, any updates?

    BTW don't choose Lenovo mix 8 or 10 inch as I just saw many users on their forums complaining of touch screen issues.
     
  18. pajenn

    pajenn Registered Member

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    Still deciding. I'm on summer vacation and plan to buy the device before I go back to work, but I'm waiting to see if any better models become available. I think it's a bad time to buy a Windows tablet because soon they'll probably have new models with 4G, replaceable batteries, and nice keyboard stands for use at home.

    But since I need to buy the device this summer, the Sony VAIO Tap 11 is still on top of my list despite its shortcomings. The Acers mentioned in this thread look great, but aren't available here. They do list an 8.1" Acer tablet with Windows 8.1 Pro, micro-USB, micro-HDMI, and 3G for 500 €, but currently it's out of stock (Acer Iconia W4). That might be an option if it becomes available in time.
     
  19. aigle

    aigle Registered Member

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    Ok. Please update the thread when you buy one.
     
  20. Brian K

    Brian K Imaging Specialist

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    My wife and I have Asus Vivo Tabs. TF810C. Her's is 18 months old but runs fine. They are a little slower than a desktop as you would expect but every Windows program I've installed runs satisfactorily. There are two batteries. One in the tablet and another in the keyboard. Battery life is a true 15 hours. 12'' screen. I wouldn't buy anything with a 10" screen. Too small.
     
  21. whitedragon551

    whitedragon551 Registered Member

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    The Vaio tap is a terrible tablet. The battery life is horrible, the charging port breaks easily, the batteries go undetected quite frequently.
     
  22. Kerodo

    Kerodo Registered Member

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    To the original question... No, never..
     
  23. pajenn

    pajenn Registered Member

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    Ok, but what's a better choice?

    Android tablets don't have USB/HDMI ports and I'm not sure common USB periphals would work on them anyway - I specifically want to have a light device that I can connect to presentation stations (HDMI-to-VGA connection) and a USB port to connect a presentator (slide changer) to it for giving powerpoint presentations. I'd prefer that at least the HDMI and one USB port be part of the tablet rather than the keyboard dock, so that I don't have to carry the keyboard with me just to use them. Other than presentations, I'll mostly use the tablet to watch videos while traveling and to surf the internet (I'll use my phone's 3G for hotspot since most Windows tablets don't come with 3G or 4G capability).

    I certainly hear people telling me not to buy the Sony VAIO Tap 11, and I've been looking at all the other models available here and reading reviews online, but there's no great Windows tablet product at this time for around 700 € or less that meets my wishes. Other Windows tablets have their own problems. At this point I'd probably get the Acer Iconia W4 instead (8" Windows tablet with 3G), but it's still not in stock - although I think I could get the Wifi only version for 329 €. Nokia Lumia 2520 is a nice 10" tablet with 4G and great battery life, but it's 820 € with keyboard cover and only comes with Windows RT crap and 32GB eMMC or SSD. Some of the 10" Windows tablets, like Lenovo Miix-2 might be better in terms of battery life, but they all they have lower specs than the Tap 11; atom processor, eMMC instead of SSD drive, less storage space, so not sure...

    Right now I'm thinking the 329 € version of the Acer Iconia W4 might be enough for my immediate needs, and then in a year or two I could upgrade to a nicer Windows tablet (once they've improved and if I like the Windows tablet experience). The Acer has 64 GB SSD, atom processor, micro-HDMI and micro-USB (2.0 only) ports so good enough for giving presentation and watching movies, and I think the battery life should be pretty good. The 500 € version (not in stock) would also have 3G, GPS, and even a better WiFi standard. Both come Win 8.1 and lots of bloatware, for example, they list Cyberlink PowerDVD for this tablet which obviously has no DVD drive...
     
  24. aigle

    aigle Registered Member

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    Couple of thoughts.

    1. When you plan to use a peripheral with a micro USB port, make sure it will work. I only came to know, after buying the portable hard disk, that it will not work with micro USB port. It needs a full USB port to power the portable HD.

    2. IMO no need for 3G or LTE tablet if you have a smart phone. If it's feasible to use the phone as hot spot then you can save money.
     
  25. max2

    max2 Registered Member

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    How would I use my android phone as a hot spot ? I have a LG G2
     
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