My Own Tablet Thinking At The Moment, Part Two

This is an update to: My Own Tablet Thinking At The Moment

Having tried an Intel Atom-based Android tablet for myself — the Dell Venue 8 — and finding it not powerful enough for Google Books PDFs, I can now drop Atom-based Android tablets from my list of contenders.

That basically leaves me with three possibilities, one wild card, and one surprise contender.


At the top of the list is the HP Slate 8 Pro. The Tegra 4 CPU has the potential to handle Google Books PDFs well. The high-resolution 1600 x 1200 screen is a plus too. I still don’t know if it will have 2GBs of RAM.


Next is the LG G Pad 8.3. Its 8.3-inch 1920 x 1280 screen is nearly as wide as the 4:3 iPad Mini. Its Snapdragon 600 scores in the 21,000-range, which sounds good on the face of it, but the Dell Venue 8 had an AnTuTu X score in the 20,000 range and lacked snap in handling Google Books PDFs.


The third choice is the riskiest: The Tomato T2 from China. It has a 1.9GHz octa-core Exynos 5410 CPU and 2GBs of fast RAM. It seems very snappy in this video. No credible AnTuTu score has been posted for it yet.


The wildcard is the iPad Mini. If the rumored update brings the new A7 CPU to it this Tuesday, I will have to make a special trip to the Apple Store once it’s out to run my Google Books PDF test on it.

And the surprise is …


The Samsung Galaxy Note 8.0. I was impressed by its speed handling Google Books PDFs. But this a dark horse entrant. Samsung hobbled it with a really crappy back camera.

These are the only tablets I’d consider buying right now. Dropped from my consideration are the Rockchip 3188-based clones (such as the Chuwi V88), the Allwinner A31s-based Ramos K1, and all others.

My own thinking shouldn’t affect yours, however. I need a tablet that can do Google Books PDFs well. And any tablet that can do those well will do all other things very well.



Filed under Personal

9 responses to “My Own Tablet Thinking At The Moment, Part Two

  1. Jonathan Ezor

    I’ve got an iPad Mini as well as my Note 8. For me, the S-Pen (Wacom tech) stylus makes the difference. Pixel-point screen selection & notetaking go a huge distance in enhancing productivity, as does Android’s *almost* webOS-like customizability & file system access. {@ProfJonathan}

  2. I believe you should give Atom another chance cause the PDF reading performance is app dependent and the built-in windows 8 PDF viewer is hardly any good. It lags on my i7 based laptop.. I wouldn’t expect it to be good on an Atom SoC.

    • mikecane

      I’m open to anyone else who owns an Atom tablet downloading the same Google Books PDF, a dedicated PDF-reading app, and doing a video showing improved performance. This is not something I can do at any store and I’m unwilling to buy a device and return it if it doesn’t work. When I buy something, I buy it to keep. It’s unfair to the store and to other people to buy something just to try it.

  3. yeahman45

    i have a galaxy note 8.0 but haven’t used it much but i was impressed with s-pen.. which is pretty useful and is really accurate… having tried google books though… as i don’t really read. battery life is pretty solid on the note 8 also and it is packed with features : sd-card slot, gps, bluetooth, ir blaster, etc..

  4. Note 8.0 for me now, I’ve ditched all other tabs I have tried thus far and its a fair few now, I am interested in the new iPad mini however Apples walled garden in software terms puts me off.

    • mikecane

      Have you found any problems with the Note? Any frustrations about certain apps that won’t do MultiView?

      • yeahman45

        tbh, i have not used multiview a lot… but found it quite limited as you can only sideload 2 apps at a time as compared to the rockchip’s multiwindow which seems nicer and not all apps can be “multiviewed”

  5. I must have missed your post on the topic: why not the Nexus 7?

    • mikecane

      I’m not keen on widescreen tablets in general and find seven-inch to be too small and too narrow. Other than that, the N7 is a nifty tablet for many people.

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