Choosing the Right Tablet Operating System
When you look into buying a tablet, the hardware itself is only half the equation. The ecosystem of its operating system — compatibility, available apps, future apps and add-ons — defines the experience. Just like you may have selected Nintendo Wii or PlayStation3 as your video-game platform, your tablet "ecosystem" determines how compatible future apps and add-ons will be. Here's some help understanding everything that comes under a tablet's hood.
Tablets running Google's Android operating system come in all sizes and prices and feature world-class apps and built-in Adobe Flash for rich website experience, streaming videos and online games. Their open-source nature makes it easy for manufacturers to create an Android-based device and for software developers to make applications for them.
- Screen sizes from 7" to 10.1"
- Memory storage with most models offer an SD card slot for expanded storage
- Cameras on most models for taking pictures and video conference
- Easy-to-use touch screen
- USB ports in most models for accessories (keyboards, docking stations, etc.)
- Apps in the Android Marketplace for thousands of uses
PC tablets are about as close to a laptop experience as you can get. They feature world-class apps and built-in Adobe Flash for rich website experience, streaming videos and online games. "Convertibles" offer physical keyboards that flip behind the touch screen or slide out — essentially converting the tablet to a laptop as needed.
- Same look and feel as Windows 7 operating system in a more portable device
- Ease of use with a touch screen and virtual pop-up keyboard
- Cameras in some models for taking pictures and video conferencing
- Install and use everyday software programs you have on your PC today
Tablets like the BlackBerry Playbook feature built-in Adobe Flash for rich website experience and streaming videos. At less than half an inch thick and weighing less than a pound, you can take it anywhere.
- 7" crystal-clear display
- Built-in Adobe Flash support
- Full HD 1080p video playback
- Built-in 3 and 5 MP cameras for taking pictures and video-conferencing
- QNX technology and 1.1GHz dual-core processor
Once you sort out which operating system will work best for you, you're ready to explore some general features to consider.
For information regarding Apple product features and functionality, please refer to Apple product item descriptions.
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