What Phone/tablet/reader combination do I need?

Broad question, but there are always very knowledgeable people on boards who have thought these things through.

I have an iphone 1 3G, Samsung tab 10.1" version 1, and the kindle (small sized). The kindle failed within guarantee, with me out of the UK, and they may still replace it as I contacted them in time. I'll be back in the UK in a month.

The phone and the tab are old enough to replace. So now I'm thinking of what to get for all my digital/coms needs. I'm going to buy a laptop as I'll be a bit of a nomad for a year or two writing software for a new web site I'm setting up. I read ebooks quite a lot.

I just saw the Samsung Galaxy note II. That looks large enough to do the job of a tablet, reader and phone. What do you think?

I don't want to buy any more apple phones as they are too closed for me. I'm going for Android.

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matt101101 / MOD  Jul. 7, 2013 at 10:41

The Note 2 is, unfortunately, just a phone. It might look big to you now, but once you've used it for a few weeks you'll realise that it's just a damn good (and rather large) phone, nothing more. Still, I recommend you have it on your shortlist of possible new phones as it's very, very good. Saying that, the Note 3 is likely to be released in the next few months, so you might wish to wait and see what that brings.

Reading eBooks on an LCD/AMOLED display will give you a headache, the Kindle's eInk display is much more suited to longer reading sessions. I'd recommend you replace the Kindle with, well, another Kindle. They do seem to be pretty good eReaders.

My tablet recommendation is, honestly, an iPad 4th Gen. I know you said you didn't want an Apple phone, but in the tablet world the iPad just outclasses all the ~10" Android tablets, in my opinion.

As for your laptop, possibly some kind of ultrabook? It really depends what kind of specifications you require for the work you'll be doing. If a medium amount of processing power and pretty basic (aka not good for gaming, but will handle 1080p video with ease) graphics will suffice an ultrabook could be a good, lightweight choice.

Pot2Kettle  Jul. 7, 2013 at 11:45

Hi Matt,

Thanks for taking the time to give me your thoughts. I find I always need to talk these things through with someone else to crystallize my own ideas.

I read ebooks on my galaxy tab at the moment and that seems OK. Will the note 2 be worse? I also use the tab for looking at web sites. Using the note 2 today I thought it might be big enough to handle that. I will always have the laptop to fall back on.

Kindles are brilliant. Totally agree. I will make sure I get my knackered one replaced or buy another.

Perhaps I'm averse to the ipad for mistaken reasons. At the moment, I upload pdfs and epubs and txts onto my galaxy tab. I put folders on the tab and use it as a computer. I have crap internet reception many places I go abroad. So I don't rely on being online.

Laptop - leaning towards retina 15" macbook pro. Light, long battery life, really high resolution so that I can get around a lack of screen space. For software development, you want more screen space. Having the resolution is an alternative where weight/space make a 17" impossible.

JanSt / MOD  Jul. 7, 2013 at 13:08

if you're used to reading on a kindle (eInk, right?), a phone or tablet might get on your proverbial t*ts pretty quickly... Faster? Yes, but the eyestrain is huge after a while.

I can read a few chapters before sleep on my OH's iPad - set to white on black and cranked down to very dark, but even then the glare can be distracting.

The Note 2 does sound like a compromise, but I agree with matt. (though, I only used the Note 2 for 2 weeks or so, and I knew I wasn't gonna keep it, so I didn't make a 100% effort to learn to use all it offers)


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