Thursday, January 10, 2013

To Tablet or Not to Tablet...

So trying something new this time. I got a tablet for Christmas, (Nexus 7,) and I'm writing on it now. I asked for it, thinking I would be able to do more than I could on an iPad. I was hoping to be able to utilize existing software, (Photoshop,) from my laptop, and work on some of my scrapbook pages. To be honest, I haven't given it a full shot yet. Since it would be web based, I'm pretty sure I won't be able to do what I want on here. To be fair, I don't think I could do any of that type of work on the iPad yet either, or any other tablet for that matter. The software & systems just don't seem robust enough to me... yet. But I will give it a true test in the next few days.
The biggest problem I'm having with the apps is that they keep dropping me in the middle of use. If what I'm working on is web based you can see where this would quickly become an issue. (The amount of information you could lose, could quickly be extremely large.) The app I've run into it the most is on Facebook. In my opinion, they took the app for Apple, tweaked some code so it would work via Android & called it good. It's not good, it's frustrating as hell. The error I get says it's a network problem, but it means their network, not mine. (Took me awhile to figure that out. Not before I tried to fix my  not broken network first.) I've run into this particular error the most. Most other apps, I'm not running live while using, so it hasn't been as much of an issue. I realize this issue might fall with the software developer, but it's important for them to realize that if the apps people want don't work, then no one's gonna buy the tablet. Especially if there is a tablet the apps do work on, like the iPad. The second major frustration I run into is several apps for Android will not work on the Nexus 7. It speaks to the need for some standardization across the industry. If any of the players in this market want to give Apple a serious run for their money that's their  best bet. Lastly upon looking in the Android store for certain (kids games,) apps, I encountered a fairly  extensive collection of adult apps. (P0rn.) I'm not a prude, but this caught me off guard, as I've never run into something like this before. It was a good reminder to update the parental controls on my children's electronics, but I worry about the kids whose parents aren't paying that much attention. (For the record, I was looking at the American Girl Doll apps and I got American Girls, but these girls were not for kids.)
This post is actually become my testdrive for many of the basic functionally aspects of the tablet. I'm quickly becoming a fan of the keyboard, (I can swipe thru letters it provides choices for the correct word-much faster than typing & I'm actual a fairly quick typist.) I know you can do this on an iPad, but the Nexus 7 costs less than half.
I'm now using the voice function to write this piece and it's pretty good. By the time my kids are old enough to want to use it nobody will type or write anything anymore, it'll all be voice dictation. I've wanted to use voice dictation in the past, but was leery of purchasing any software as it's not cheap and reviews have indicated that the software isn't very effective. I'm definitely having to go back and tweak a bit, some of the words that it thinks I mean are definitely off base, but actually it's much better than I expected. I have an iPhone 4, so my phone doesn't talk back to me, meaning, no Seri. But when I do try to use the voice dictation feature it's not nearly as good as this nexus 7 one seems to be. (This paragraph was originally written using voice dictation. I have gone & tweaked it, so it makes more sense, but you can see what the tablet came up with on it's own, in the paragraph below.)</p>

<p dir="ltr"><i>I'm</i><i> also using </i><i>the</i><i> voice function to write this </i><i>piece</i><i> and </i><i>it's</i><i> </i><i>pretty</i><i> </i><i>good</i><i>. By the time I kids are old enough to want to use </i><i>it</i><i> nobody will type </i><i>or</i><i> </i><i>write</i><i> anything anymore </i><i>it'll</i><i> </i><i>all</i><i> </i><i>be</i><i> voice dictation. I </i><i>wanted</i><i> to use voice dictation </i><i>in</i><i> </i><i>the</i><i> </i><i>past</i><i> </i><i>the</i><i> </i><i>Bently</i><i> </i><i>reserve</i><i> </i><i>purchasing</i><i> any of </i><i>this</i><i> software to do so the software is not cheap </i><i>and</i><i> </i><i>reviews</i><i> </i><i>and</i><i> </i><i>indicate</i><i> that the software is infected I'm definitely having to go back </i><i>and</i><i> </i><i>tweaks</i><i> </i><i>is</i><i> </i><i>the</i><i> bed some of the words that it thinks I mean are definitely well </i><i>face</i><i> </i><i>but</i><i> actually it's much better than </i><i>I</i><i> </i><i>expected</i><i>. </i><i>I </i><i>have</i><i> </i><i>an</i><i> iPhone 4, so my phone doesn't talk back to me </i><i>meeting</i><i> </i><i>3</i><i> </i><i>something</i><i> </i><i>on</i><i> </i><i>it</i><i> but when I do </i><i>try</i><i> to use </i><i>the</i><i> voice dictation </i><i>feature</i><i> it's not nearly as good </i><i>as</i><i> </i><i>this</i><i> </i><i>nexus</i><i> </i><i>71</i><i> seems to </i><i>be</i><i>.</i></p>
<p dir="ltr">Big got a Kindle Fire for Christmas and I need to test that out since it uses the same platform, Android.&#160; The Kindle Fire is at a similar price point, so I'm curious to compare them side-by-side. </p>
Funny, I wasn't intending to write a review. I had actually intended to write about having a frustrating Fibro day, but I'm hurting enough to even bring my laptop on my lap well in front of me that is painful.
I saw the tablet sitting on the coffee table next to me & thought let's give it a try.  It became a review by default.  Writing this may have made the tablet much more valuable to me as I've discovered I can use voice dictation to write my blog posts. Voice dictation will mean my spelling will improve, but my grammar is going to suffer greatly.  Right now, it's taking me as much time as if I typed it to write this post.  But, it takes a lot less energy and eventually I expect it will be faster as it becomes more familiar with my voice. The jury still out on whether not I plan to keep the tablet, I'm still working on learning all the functionality. I actually downloaded the user's manual and read it cover to cover and there are still some things  I'm trying to figure out.  I'm not the smartest kid on the block, I'm not the dumbest either and the fact that I read the book and can't figure out a couple of basic things on my own, so far indicates me that there's still a lot of work for Google to do if they wanted to compete with an iPad.