To Xoom Or Not To Xoom

So you’re in the market to purchase a tablet to help you, you know, with your sermons. You’ve decided you would rather go Android than iOS (gasp!). The next question you have is, do you spend the 6 to 7 bills (unsubsidized) needed to purchase the flagship XOOM, or do you forgo waiting until it releases later this month, and settle for a lesser tablet now?

Here are some (very) quick thoughts before making your purchase:

The XOOM will come out with the slick “Honeycomb” operating system (Android 3.0) out of the box. This OS was designed for tablets which will later on port over to phones, and not the other way around.

Coming from a 2.2(Froyo), or even 2.3(Gingerbread) phone, you’ll first realize that calling this an “updated” OS is a slight understatement, as it is really an overhaul – from the 3D homescreens to the optimized Google Apps that you won’t find on any other device (save for a mod). Just take a look at the video Google gave us a few weeks ago (keep in mind this OS is not even complete in the video):

For the full Android Event, check out the 52 minute here.

Keep this in mind when trying to save a buck by going with a lesser tablet (such as any of the ones from Archos, Viewsonic, Dell, or even Samsung): they are only running 2.1 or 2.2. Pricing will drop dramatically on these devices, and temp you pretty strongly. But by waiting just 1-2 more months you’ll surely be in “Honeycomb Heaven” and will probably have paid the same amount.

Look out for LG, Lenovo and HTC to come out with their devices shortly after the XOOM releases.

Wondering about 3G vs 4G? Well, for that you might need to wait until the end of summer.

27 Replies to “To Xoom Or Not To Xoom”

  1. Looks pretty cool! I have an ipad (gasp! :)). I have found tablets to be great for a few things: quick web browsing, note taking, and mind-mapping. That is what I use mine most for anyway…

    1. When it actually comes out, I’m going to check the unsubsidized cost and see if I can swing it for 30 days or so, that way I can give a hands-on review.

  2. I really think tablets are more for consumption anyway.. I had an iPad and sold it because it really was not the best thing to do actual work on – it’s not the iPad’s fault, it’s the form factor in my opinion. But – for consumption of media they are amazing. I want anther tablet just for preaching, but I am doubtful I want to spend the kind of money they’ll want for the Xoom.

    1. Interesting you say that Herb, because the iPad costs more with similar spec. We’re talking unsubsidized cost here, for the Flagship Xoom. It would be like if Apple were to JUST release the 3G/wifi 64gb iPad. That mug is $829!

  3. Interestingly enough a coworker and I were talking about tablets this morning. He was in the market for one, and I was trying to sell him on the iPad. We have one, and find it pretty useful as a “nice toy” (right now, we only have one laptop so it’s a nice compliment). Ben, I’ll forward this post to my buddy… I’m sure he’ll be interested to read about some of the other options out there.

  4. You are in my turf now Benjamin (can I call you that? :0)

    What Apple did with the iPad was introduce a new device that will become the model of computing. Tablets have existed for a decade. They all sucked because they were running a full OS instead of a mobile OS. Now that Apple succeeded with the iPad and giving it a 10 hour battery life, the others will (have)followed.

    I’m not a fan of Android. I’m aware of Honeycomb and the Xoom and the coming monsters of Android tables that will be introduced. However, what Apple has been doing is giving people a simple UI that everybody can understand. You can’t say that about Android.

    Also, did you see what Palm (I mean HP) announced yesterday? The Palm TouchPad. In my opinion, WebOS is a more polished and easier OS for a tablet. (see here: http://www.palm.com/us/products/pads/touchpad/index.html )

    I have an iPad and if you dare to explore, you can do a lot more than just consumption. I think we have only scratched the surface of table computing.

    1. I agree with the mobiel OS vs full OS thing…

      We’ll have to agree to disagree about the production-vs-consumption issue with the iPad (and any other tablet). While you can produce, it’s a terrible platform for anything other than drawing, and it’s not great at that because it lacks precision – inherent in the mechanics of capacitive touch.

      Again, I love the iPad, but the ultimate reason I sold mine (and bought a MacBook Pro) is that I think it is terrible for producing actual work. I spent enough money on enough apps trying to get it to be more than it is, but in the end, it’s just a tablet.

      To me, the ideal “production capable tablet” is something that has a convertible hardware keyboard, and the ability to use a more precise input device – akin to the new Dell convertible laptop or the the HP convertibles – but with a lighter OS for better battery performance.

      (when I say work, I mean office app stuff as well as graphics work, which is what I do as a “tent-maker”)

    2. No you can’t call me Benjamin, and I ignored the rest of the comment since I assumed you were talking to somebody else.

      I kid!

      I agree with you on all points there, and that’s fine you’re not an Android fan, I won’t hate you for it. I can also agree that Android has not created as simple a UI as Apple, yet. It’s polished for sure.

      What Android has going for it, and some say this is to their detriment but I disagree, is that they are progressing at such a rapid rate. Last year they predicted Android to overcome iOS by the end of the year. What they didn’t predict is that Android passed iOS, AND RIM to place themselves just under Symbian. Crazy.

      As far as UI goes, I like widgets and the unobtrusive notifications // non-existent on iOS.

      Different strokes for different folks ;-P

      HP’s going to be so far behind when that actually releases, it’s sad.

  5. I used to be a tech guy (even majored in computery stuff in college). In the last few years, I’ve fallen so far behind it’s not even funny. It’s humiliating. That being said, everything you just said was German to me (other than Honeycomb, one of my favorite cereals growing up).

    Once we have more money (see: business actually starts making money), I plan to buy two things: a new MacBook Air and a tablet. I was sold on the iPad (mostly because of that fruit logo on the back), but am now reconsidering. Thanks for adding to my anxiety.

  6. I am excited about a new android tablet OS. The current Android tabs are terrible! It looks like they are trying to pack a lot of cool stuff into android, we will see how well it works. There are two things that keep the iPad on top right now. Simplicity in UI, and most importantly app support.

    If android has the app revolution that ios has, then you may see me switch. But with the “it just works” and all the apps I could ever want… Apple stands a good chance of keeping me.

    1. Apps are definitely where it’s at, and really there’s no real good way of being able to count how many Apps Android has at the moment. Especially since half of the ones you can install aren’t even in the Android Market! Support for Apps is huge, and in the “open” world it just seems the support is hit or miss, some developers will bend over backwards to get your stuff working, and some won’t even respond.

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