Tablet experiences and updates

After spending some time with the Asus Transformer, a few things have happened.

Asus Transformer Prime
Asus released the Transformer Prime in December. It's hard to believe that it is now possible to get a quad-core processor in a tablet. I really don't think there's much benefit to it right now, but I would like to test out the Transformer's video editing app again. The reviews of the Prime are mostly favourable, but there are a few things worth noting.

The dock / battery from the original Transformer isn't compatible with the Prime. The wireless network signal is hampered by the new, all-aluminum design. The GPS is having reception issues as well. Anandtech has a good description of what's going on with the WiFi and GPS reception issues.

iPad 2
The iPad 2 has been out for a while but I just recently had the chance to use one for several weeks. Compared to the iPad 1, it's thinner, it has a camera, and the faster processor and increased RAM make for a slightly smoother interface. The increased performance is nice, and is a natural evolution for gadgets, but that alone would not have made the iPad 2 a worthwhile upgrade.

After using it for an extended session I didn't actually notice it's "thinness". I am not a small person, so I really don't get excited about the push for thin and light. If anything, I would prefer the size and feel of the iPad 1.

The camera is definitely a welcome feature. More specifically, the front camera enables video conferencing which can be a very useful feature for tablets.

iOS 5 on the original iPad
I updated my iPad 1 to iOS 5 (5.0.1 to be precise). What a mistake. I mean that in the sense that it was a mistake for me to update, and it was a mistake for Apple to release such an unstable update. I am not alone in the experience. I have only a few apps installed, no iCloud sync, and no media, and it is common to crash to the home screen. I mostly use the iPad for web browsing, and Safari crashes. A lot.

iOS 5 wasn't ready. Period. I'm honestly surprised Apple let it out the door. The biggest issue I had with the iPad before the update was the checkerboard background when scrolling pages quickly. I'm going to look into rolling back to iOS 4.

More tablets and Ice Cream Sandwich
There are a number of Android tablets due out soon, and we can expect to see many running Android 4 (Ice Cream Sandwich). I am looking forward to ones like the 10 inch Acer Iconia Tab A200 and the 7 inch Archos 70b IT which should offer some decent performance at lower prices ($329 and $200 respectively).