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  1. #1
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    Windows 8 tablet: To have or not to have? 2014 edition

    So I came across this sexy, affordable beauty at Harvey Norman Malaysia:

    1105.jpg

    An Asus 8-Inch Quad Core Windows 8 Tablet. Price is around US$330.

    So, I'm thinking of getting of this tablet in a few month. What's your opinion on this?

    And buying a Windows 8 tablet; what could possibly go wrong?

  2. #2
    Obscure Node boundless08's Avatar
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    I've been debating getting a windows tablet as well and with other things to choose from besides the Surface tablets I'm willing to give them a try.My girlfriend got a hp laptop with touch screen last month, and I have to say the 8 interface is nice for touch devices.

    That Asus is nice, might look into it. I was looking at the Lenovo Miix 2. Very similar specs.
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  3. #3
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus coldvvvave's Avatar
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    Isn't there a common problem with most W8 tabs, the really short time they hold battery? I heard most W8 tabs were 4 hours of non-stop video tops. Thats a little too short I think. I might be wrong of course or maybe this info is outdated.
    Quote Originally Posted by Drake Sigar View Post
    You are an enemy of gaming.

  4. #4
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Tritagonist's Avatar
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    Have you used or owned a tablet before? If so, what kind of tablet was it? I suppose expectations and desires from the machine and its operating system will depend on your previous experience and your intended usage.
    "He has anointed me to bring good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim release to
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  5. #5
    Bundling tablets with Microsoft Office is really nice. I like Office's implementation of the stylus and it's by far the best word processing program available in tablet form. That's really the only thing that makes Win8 tablets in that price range stand out from the crowd though. The Windows store is woefully undersupported compared to iOS/Android and desktop programs are extremely cumbersome without a mouse, if they even run decently on what is still a mobile processor.

    Get a Win8 tablet only if word processing is important to you. (Or save up for a Surface Pro, but that's more of a replacement for people tired of carrying both a laptop and tablet)

    Quote Originally Posted by coldvvvave View Post
    Isn't there a common problem with most W8 tabs, the really short time they hold battery? I heard most W8 tabs were 4 hours of non-stop video tops. Thats a little too short I think. I might be wrong of course or maybe this info is outdated.
    That was an issue with the Pro series that have hardware (and battery life) basically identical to laptops.
    Last edited by Snargelfargen; 24-01-2014 at 09:24 AM.

  6. #6
    Lesser Hivemind Node frightlever's Avatar
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    The OS and hardware are immaterial until you decide what you want to do with it. Browsing? A sixty quid 8" Android tablet will be fine for browsing. Games? Check the GPU and do a Google on the chipset and model number of the tablet to see if people are having problems with it. My W8.1 tablet is pretty much useless for Windows games - plays plenty of the Metro (WTF are we supposed to call it? I forget.) games fine though.

    Also, four hours of video is okay. Not spectacular but not bad.

  7. #7
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus SirKicksalot's Avatar
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    I have a Dell Venue 8 Pro. It has the full version of Windows 8.1 and runs Crysis (at 25 fps with dips).

    I posted this in another thread:

    I knew the app market is terrible, but the reality is worse than I ever imagined. People stuck with a Windows RT device must be truly miserable. I have a full Windows tablet; using it as a PC is pretty damn awesome. The actual tablet experience is often nightmarish. Things like an official Youtube app don't exist and the knock-offs barely have any ratings so you never know what bullshit you're installing. Whatever official apps exist are half-assed compared to their Android and Apple versions. I was very surprised when the Kindle app couldn't even import my non-Kindle e-books. The desktop version is not fit for touch. I tried a couple of alternatives and they were awful - until Nook saved the day. It has two ratings on the app store.

    It's a bizzare and annoying situation. Don't consider yourself safe from it just because you're getting a full Windows tablet.


    BUT!
    This thing runs the basic edition of Windows 8.1 and has an awesome Intel Bay Trail CPU. It's a real PC.
    Desktop programs are more or less cumbersome to use. A stylus helps a lot. Unfortunately Dell's own stylus was so broken they pulled it off the market and are relaunching it in a couple of weeks. Anyway, an 8" screen at 125% magnification isn't that hard to poke at. It's also big enough to comfortably browse non-mobile versions of any site, and Metro IE11 is great. Windows 8's Explorer has a ribbon so you don't need ninja skills to do basic Windows tasks.

    You can plug in any USB mouse and keyboard or external storage. It takes a bit of effort to figure out the right cables, dongles and connectors. Regular PC annoyances.
    Devices like this 20 dollars mini bluetooth keyboard with touchpad can turn your tablet into a badass laptop and you won't have to worry about desktop programs ever again. You can do anything!

    These new Windows 8.1 tablets can be excellent gaming machines. Bay Trail is a really good CPU. Few non-Metro games work with touch but grab a mouse and keyboard and you can play almost anything that's not GPU-intensive. These are perfect machines for older games. Even newer ones like Borderlands 2 run well. You can use a goddamn Xbox 360 controller or a DS4. There are programs which turn a portion of the screen into a touchpad with mouse keys. Civ 5 has native touch controls. Last night I spent hours playing Hearthstone in bed - it works incredibly well with touch controls.

    tl;dr: app ecosystem blows, desktop mode is awesome with cheap additional gadgets.
    If you're looking for an effortless browsing, reading and casual gaming experience, grab a cheap Android or iOS tablet.
    If you want a PC with touchscreen which can do anything as long as you put some effort into it, grab a Windows tablet.

  8. #8
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    Not sure why a PC user would want an official Youtube app that doesn't allow you to save videos or skip ads. As a PC user I'm more concerned about the absence of Metro versions of PC staples VLC, uTorrent, and Windows Explorer than the dearth of officially-stamped glorified webwraps.

    Quote Originally Posted by coldvvvave View Post
    Isn't there a common problem with most W8 tabs, the really short time they hold battery? I heard most W8 tabs were 4 hours of non-stop video tops. Thats a little too short I think. I might be wrong of course or maybe this info is outdated.
    This was an issue for the original Surface Pro which used an Ivy Bridge-based CPU. The new Haswell-based Surface Pro improves battery life considerably. Almost all other Windows 8 tablets use either Atom or ARM CPUs and offer comparable battery life to ARM-based Android or iOS tabs.
    Last edited by Lethe; 25-01-2014 at 04:27 PM.

  9. #9
    Network Hub spacein_vader's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lethe View Post
    Not sure why a PC user would want an official Youtube app that doesn't allow you to save videos or skip ads. As a PC user I'm more concerned about the absence of Metro versions of PC staples VLC, uTorrent, and Windows Explorer than the dearth of officially-stamped glorified webwraps.
    I can't imagine Google ever releasing an official app that would allow you to skip ads or save videos.

  10. #10
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    That was my point: third-party apps are superior, so why would you want an official one?

    Granted myTube on Windows Phone (which is my reference point) has a few bugs to go along with its feature set, and it doesn't pair with TVs like the official apps, but it's a worthy trade-off in the end. I particularly like being able to play music videos in 'audio only' mode which avoids the battery drain that comes from playing video.

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