With more people opting to buy a tablet PC can they actually replace your laptop? We put a Galaxy to the test to see. On first sight, the tablet was easy to set up and already had a multitude of apps ready to go right out of the box. The set up was painless and we were testing the appliance in a matter of minutes. After connecting the tablet to our Wi-Fi we were ready to test the Internet. I tried the default browser first and it worked fairly fast going to my favorite websites. The first problem I found is that many of my favorite sites that used java or flash would not load. I had a hard time getting some flash video to work as well. In addition, I could not play many of my favorite games on Facebook. That constitutes one huge strike.
The next thing I tried to use was the built in office product to try and create a document. I found it confusing with not much in the way of settings to get the desired product I want. I decided to test something else. I found an online document that I wanted to print. Now keep in mind that I have a fairly new HP Printer that works with all operating systems including Windows 7. It would not work with the tablet. In fact, I would have to go out and buy a special Samsung printer just to be able to get it to work. Strike 2 on the tablet.
Even with the negatives, I found several things the tablet will do. With the free I-Heart app, you can play and create tons of great radio stations many of which are commercial free. If you plug the tablet into your existing stereo you will be in for a treat. It sounds really great.
After searching, I found a few apps that will allow me to play a few of my games in at least a limited way and I also found some new games that were well suited to the tablet such as Bowling and Pool. These games seemed to work quite well on the system.
Another great use for the appliance is for tracking the weather and using weather radar. There are several great apps out there to do this. Some are free and others charge a small fee for their use. This option is great at night when you shut down your PC and you want to stay informed of weather conditions through the night. In addition, an app called Storm Shield can turn your tablet into a NOAA weather radio and actually alert you by alarm and voice of potentially dangerous weather that is approaching your region.
The tablet also has a great calendar that you can sync with your Google calendar on your main computer. This is useful if you want to add an entry at night or when you are away from your main computer. We use this feature quite often.
In general, owning a tablet is a great convenience for touch ups and checking the Internet for news, sports or weather when you are away from your main PC. There is no way that this appliance could ever replace my notebook or desktop computer. In this household, the PC is here to stay but the tablet is a nice extension of convenience when I am in a different place away from my main computer.
Author: Joe Zelenak, Staff Writer