tablets

Microsoft Surprises with New Tablet-like Announcement

Duo

Episode 1719

Microsoft surprised everyone this week with the announcement of a two-screen mobile device, that Leo describes the Surface DUO as a kind of folding notebook you'd get at a bookstore. Like a pocket-sized portfolio or Moleskine. It has two 6" screens that when unfolded creates an 8" diagonal tablet running Android. The screens can work in concert or independently for multi-tasking.  Leo stresses that Microsoft insists the DUO is NOT a phone, but an internet-enabled device that can also make phone calls.

How can I stream from an Android tablet to a larger monitor?

Google Chromecast

Episode 1704

Tim from Oak Hills, CA

Tim wants to know how to hook up a tablet to a bigger screen. Leo says the easiest way would be to use Google Chromecast. You can connect that to a monitor and then use an app to cast the app to the TV. But the app needs to support it. Another option is a TypeC adapter to connect it. Are there apps that can make his tablet into a laptop? Leo says if it's a Samsung Android, then yes. But cheaper tablets don't support that option and aren't powerful enough anyway. You get what you pay for.  But you could use the web browser and access Google Docs that way online.

What's a good, affordable tablet?

Amazon Fire Tablet

Episode 1700

Cameron from Sioux Falls, SD

Cameron wants a recommendation on a new tablet, and he's an Android guy. Leo says that there aren't really many decent Android tablets out there. Samsung makes a decent one. But their no cheaper than iPads, and frankly, the iPad is really the best tablet by a WIDE margin.  Android tablets can also be very insecure and must constantly be up to date with monthly security updates. If you have an LTE tablet, odds are the tablet isn't updated as often by the carrier. Apple, however, keeps their devices updated continuously regardless of what carrier you have subscribed to. 

What's the best Android Tablet for the money?

Samsung Galaxy Tab A

Episode 1692

Jim from Laguna Beach, CA

Jim has a Ricoh Theta One 360 camera. He installed a third party fisheye plugin to it to improve the dynamic range with HDR. It uses Android to access remotely. So which Android tablet should he get to access the footage? Leo says all the Android tablets are basically terrible now. The best is Samsung's Galaxy Tab, and it's not cheap. Another option is the Asus line. They are more affordable. So that may work for you. If you could get the plugins to work with the Amazon Fire Tablet, they're under $100.

Apple Announces MacBook Air and iPad Pros

MacBook Air

Episode 1679

Apple announced a new iPad Pro and MacBook Air this week. And Leo says that the iPad Pro costs as much, or more, than a fully equipped MacBook Air. Also, there isn't much difference between the previous iPad Pro and the new model, so Leo isn't sure it's worth upgrading to, and if you're looking at it for a new purchase, the MacBook Air will have more workable apps, vs. the tablet based iOS apps. 

Should I buy a dedicated tablet for home automation?

Late 2019 iPad

Episode 1668

Paul from San Diego, CA

Paul has a bunch of different smart locks where they all have their own locking app. Leo says that can be a hassle, but in the future, there will be centralized hubs that can handle that. Amazon Echo should be able to do it via voice. Could he have a dedicated tablet for all of them? Leo says sure. But that doesn't really solve the problem; it just shuffles over to a dedicated device. You can probably get a really cheap one to do it, as well. But don't fall for those $99 deals, they're likely woefully underpowered and rarely updated.

Should I buy an iPad, Chromebook or laptop?

iPad

Episode 1655

Sundeep from Orlando, FL

Sundeep is trying to decide whether to get a Chromebook, a laptop, or an iPad for traveling. Leo says that for what Sundeep is needing, the Chromebook is probably out of contention. But the iPad is a great option. Because everyone has a mobile device now, Airlines no longer have entertainment systems onboard, choosing for streaming content via WiFi. You merely download the airline app, and you can watch movies, TVs, etc. That's where the iPad can shine.