Friday, February 28, 2014

iPad vs. HP Omni 10 vs. Nexus 7 vs. Laptop

I find this conundrum quite interesting. I have always tried to stay on the leading edge of that which I ‘think’ I understand. Having purchased my first PC in 1981 (IBM – not a clone) I have continually tried to discover what’s it all about for the user. What can I do with this? How can we make our lives better through this technology? And it has been exciting.

Admittedly technology has been in all of my life as I have said many times. Sometimes the technology is for fun, it’s being adventurous, the excitement of stepping into the future and seeing what you can make it do. I do have a tendency to push some things too far and sometimes not far enough. There is also the ego rush when you know something and can show others. I do enjoy showing others “how to” and that is most rewarding to me.

Today I have an iPad (version 3), a Nexus 7, and the new HP Omni 10. What is going to happen to all these devices?

Well the iPad has become my new Kindle replacement. It is great to read on and to work with PDF’s. I say that because I am currently trying to get through a Coursera class on statistics and the book is a PDF which I can highlight, underline, annotate, and make notes. I can’t do that as easily on any other device. The screen is beautiful and I have no problem with reading on the device. I have my Kindle subscription on it and get to do most of my reading that way. The Kindle app is on everything else including the phone but I still want to go back to the iPad to read.

The app’s at Apple and on the Android are really great. You do not need a million app’s however you do need ones that are really aimed at productivity and these devices do have the apps – at least for the time being.

As for cloud storage my files can be uploaded from my laptop (or desktop) via Dropbox, OneDrive, or Google Drive. I personally seem to get better traction with Dropbox (if you sign up for Dropbox use me as a reference as I can use the additional free space). Dropbox has been faster and without errors. I use the other cloud storage however I do get occasional sync corruption with OneDrive (the old SkyDrive). Had that happen today and that can be frustrating and I do not believe in frustration*.

I had planned to use the iPad as a kitchen tool for recipes, news and weather in the morning, and a general all purpose household device. After reading “Rethinking the iPad: A formula to make it useful if you’re already savvy on a laptop and smartphone” by Jason Hiner over at TechRepublic I completely concur. I immediately took off all the email and turned off notification and began to look at the iPad a little differently. Perhaps I will even believe that it is an entertainment device.

On the iPad I use Documents (by Readdle) to read and update my PDF’s. With the recent upgrades to i0S 7 Documents 5 has added (for a fee) a some really cool additions to annotating PDF’s Very nice app but not available on Windows. I might say I do not mind paying for apps that will make life easier. Like the ones that start my wife’s car or turn off an on the security at the house.

As for the HP Omni 10 I have full access to all of Microsoft 2013 through my subscription. I can watch the class video’s on the HP Omni 10 and switch between that and MS Word to make notes. I can have the book open on the iPad and stay up with the reading. Again using Dropbox for all my collection of information while working.

After reading Molly Wood’s Phone, Meet Tablet, That’s Phabulous, (you could hit a paywall it’s the NY Times) my next phone will most likely be a Phablet. I had preciously looked at the Galaxy Note 3 that she discusses and, unless something happens on the way to the forum, I will wind up getting that phone when my contract is up for renewal this year. I say “unless something happens” because I had planned to buy a Galaxy Note tablet and fell into the HP Omni 10. If it wasn’t for the Verizon contract I would that Galaxy Note 3 phone now. 

As I have written many times previously the HP OMNI 10 running Windows 8.1 is my work tool of choice I still have an HP Pavilion dv6 for web work and heavy duty Excel spreadsheets, and this time to write this blog. I do have a desktop but it will be the last one of those. I like watching TED Talks on the 23” HD Monitor.

* See Jim Rohn – “Don’t get frustrated, get fascinated” it’s been a mantra of mine ever since I heard Jim Rohn speak it.