Three tablet reviews

A tablet PC kind of world.

Like all types of computers, what is determined as “best” in a tablet PC depends on need and preference.

If you want a lightweight, commuter-friendly computer, the Acer should spread a little joy into your life. If you prefer a bit more power and a bigger screen, Toshiba is a dependable option with expandable capabilities. And if you prefer a pure slate that can become a handy desktop machine, then Fujitsu is ready to take your order.

Of the three kinds of tablet PCs–convertible, hybrid, and slate–I’ve found the convertible, like the Acer and the Toshiba, to be the most compatible for a wider range of computing needs.

In the office, the Fujitsu holder and standalone keyboard made it feel more desktop-ready than its more portable kin, but I’ve become spoiled by a standard 15-inch screen, so having a narrower pageview felt cramped as a desktop replacement.

There were also other reasons for leaning toward the convertible. Having the ability to flip from laptop to tablet is a boon not just when too much writing makes my hand cramp, but also for overall convenience.

With a slate-only PC, having the keyboard back on my desk when I need it in the airport lounge is enough to cause serious grumbling. When I could remember to drag it along, having a carry-on bag full of wires and peripherals didn’t feel like a better option than a regular laptop.

After perusing a batch of different tablets, I did begin to feel more comfortable with tablet computing overall, but I couldn’t help but feel that it will still take more time to ease on down this particular road.

For one thing, I had to readjust my PDA style to accommodate the standard dropdown menus, which tended to nestle right below my palm, where I couldn’t see them. Physically handling the tablets was another adjustment, since they heated up faster than my laptop and required angling against whatever surface proved handy. In terms of actual computing, they all performed well, although the handwriting recognition does need additional work, and the pricetags aren’t exactly accountant-friendly yet.

But, as users yearn for PDA ability in a laptop machine, the tablet revolution should prove to be a zesty one.

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