Recommend a cheap, small tablet?

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yukon50
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Recommend a cheap, small tablet?

Post by yukon50 » Mon Sep 30, 2013 3:45 am

What is a good tablet that is cheap and portable and would be good for traveling internationally?

Want to have something that can connect to wifi.

Thinking of something like a Kindle Fire. Is there anything smaller?

Am considering buying a used device off Craiglist. Is that a good or bad idea?

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frugaltype
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Re: Recommend a cheap, small tablet?

Post by frugaltype » Mon Sep 30, 2013 4:22 am

I have had my Nook HD+ Slate for a couple of days. Once I learned the interface (I was expecting it to work like a laptop), I like it. It uses wireless. It seems to be the same size as a Kindle Fire.

B&N has prices slashed, but I am not worrying about their going out of business, since I think Microsoft will keep the Nooks alive and I have Calibre, so I can load it up with books from other sources. I got the 32GB one at $179. The 16GB one is $149, on the B&N site.

Reading is very comfortable, day or night.

Not having had GPS before, I like that the map feature knows where I am.

mhalley
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Re: Recommend a cheap, small tablet?

Post by mhalley » Mon Sep 30, 2013 5:34 am

How much smaller than 7 inches do you want? If you want real small, then the ipod would be great. If you want around 5 inch or so, Archos makes some about that size. Another posibility might be to buy a phone and use it as a tablet. A used Galaxy Note for example. It is technically a phone, but if you don't need to make calls you could just use it as a tablet.
Or perhaps the Virginmobile Supreme, its 5 inch.
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AustenNut
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Re: Recommend a cheap, small tablet?

Post by AustenNut » Mon Sep 30, 2013 6:31 am

Here's another vote for a Nook HD (7"). I bought mine in advance of an international trip and got one for $129. I think last week B&N was having a sale (don't know if it's still going on) and I think it had dropped in price to $109. The HD+ (9") was about $30 more.

I would also recommend checking out your library's page on e-materials. Ours will let you download books from two different programs (so you can check out 6 books on your tablet), plus a subscription to Zinio (can download free magazines that stay on as long as you want ), plus a music subscription site (can download 5 songs/week and keep them for free). That way when you can't access the internet (in rural areas or on a plane) you still have something to keep your mind busy.

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Re: Recommend a cheap, small tablet?

Post by WendyW » Mon Sep 30, 2013 6:50 am

yukon50 wrote:Thinking of something like a Kindle Fire. Is there anything smaller?
Kindle Fire HD 7" at $139 would meet your needs. You wouldn't want a smaller tablet.

If you want to spend less money, buy the Previous Generation Kindle Fire (used) on Amazon for $70.

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topper1296
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Re: Recommend a cheap, small tablet?

Post by topper1296 » Mon Sep 30, 2013 7:19 am

The Nextbook 8 can be bought a Walmart for $99. It is an amazing tablet considering it's price. Check out the reviews on it.

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Re: Recommend a cheap, small tablet?

Post by pochax » Mon Sep 30, 2013 8:31 am

if you don't want to be locked into the Amazon ecosystem/environment, can consider an Asus MEMOPad HD 7" for $150 at Amazon. unlike Kindle, Nexus, iPad mini, it has expandable microSD card slot for more memory storage (music/movies). But if you want to use it to watch Amazon Prime instant videos you are pretty much stuck with the Kindle line of products.

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Re: Recommend a cheap, small tablet?

Post by SHB » Mon Sep 30, 2013 9:49 am

How small?

If you are looking for a 7" tablet I would suggest considering the Nexus 7 which is relativly cheap.

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Aptenodytes
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Re: Recommend a cheap, small tablet?

Post by Aptenodytes » Mon Sep 30, 2013 11:01 am

frugaltype wrote:I have had my Nook HD+ Slate for a couple of days. Once I learned the interface (I was expecting it to work like a laptop), I like it. It uses wireless. It seems to be the same size as a Kindle Fire.

B&N has prices slashed, but I am not worrying about their going out of business, since I think Microsoft will keep the Nooks alive and I have Calibre, so I can load it up with books from other sources. I got the 32GB one at $179. The 16GB one is $149, on the B&N site.

Reading is very comfortable, day or night.

Not having had GPS before, I like that the map feature knows where I am.
+ 1 for the Nooks. Nice, inexpensive Android tablet. I got the HD (7") a few months ago and really like it.

No need to worry about the relationship to Barnes and Noble. The OS is Android so it doesn't really matter what Barnes and Noble does.

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Re: Recommend a cheap, small tablet?

Post by Rodc » Mon Sep 30, 2013 11:53 am

Aptenodytes wrote:
frugaltype wrote:I have had my Nook HD+ Slate for a couple of days. Once I learned the interface (I was expecting it to work like a laptop), I like it. It uses wireless. It seems to be the same size as a Kindle Fire.

B&N has prices slashed, but I am not worrying about their going out of business, since I think Microsoft will keep the Nooks alive and I have Calibre, so I can load it up with books from other sources. I got the 32GB one at $179. The 16GB one is $149, on the B&N site.

Reading is very comfortable, day or night.

Not having had GPS before, I like that the map feature knows where I am.
+ 1 for the Nooks. Nice, inexpensive Android tablet. I got the HD (7") a few months ago and really like it.

No need to worry about the relationship to Barnes and Noble. The OS is Android so it doesn't really matter what Barnes and Noble does.
Which booksellers can you use? Apple, B&N, Amazon? Other?

I have a first gen color Nook, and frankly it is not a great device so in the back of my mind I have the idea of replacing it.
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frugaltype
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Re: Recommend a cheap, small tablet?

Post by frugaltype » Mon Sep 30, 2013 12:12 pm

Rodc wrote:
Aptenodytes wrote:
frugaltype wrote:I have had my Nook HD+ Slate for a couple of days. Once I learned the interface (I was expecting it to work like a laptop), I like it. It uses wireless. It seems to be the same size as a Kindle Fire.

B&N has prices slashed, but I am not worrying about their going out of business, since I think Microsoft will keep the Nooks alive and I have Calibre, so I can load it up with books from other sources. I got the 32GB one at $179. The 16GB one is $149, on the B&N site.

Reading is very comfortable, day or night.

Not having had GPS before, I like that the map feature knows where I am.
+ 1 for the Nooks. Nice, inexpensive Android tablet. I got the HD (7") a few months ago and really like it.

No need to worry about the relationship to Barnes and Noble. The OS is Android so it doesn't really matter what Barnes and Noble does.
Which booksellers can you use? Apple, B&N, Amazon? Other?

I have a first gen color Nook, and frankly it is not a great device so in the back of my mind I have the idea of replacing it.
Install free Calibre. It will convert books from one format to another. I got it after amazon deleted my kindle (for pc) books on my laptop when I closed my amazon account. Fortunately, I managed to get them restored by reopening the account, But that convinced me I needed a wall between me and amazon. So now I download amazon kindle books to my kindle for pc, and immediately drag and drop the book file into Calibre so amazon can't touch it. I use Calibre's ereader to read the books.

I have not yet tried the conversion feature, but the rest of Calibre is so robust and well designed that I expect it to work. I expect to try it in the next few days, or maybe there is a Calibre app that will run on the Nook. No problem with protection, since there is a plugin that strips that off. (I do not plan to do anything crooked, moderators,I am just saying, I paid for these books, I should able to read them on anything I please to.)

You can also add a microSD storage card to the Nook. That will give me more total storage on the Nook than I have on my laptop :-)

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Aptenodytes
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Re: Recommend a cheap, small tablet?

Post by Aptenodytes » Mon Sep 30, 2013 12:13 pm

Rodc wrote: Which booksellers can you use? Apple, B&N, Amazon? Other?

I have a first gen color Nook, and frankly it is not a great device so in the back of my mind I have the idea of replacing it.
Any bookseller that offers an Android app. I've used B&N and the kludgy system my library uses. Around the time B&N decided to stop making Nooks they opened up the OS so that what was formerly an impregnable proprietary shell on top of the OS is now fully porous. So you can run anything you want on it. If for some reason you think the shell is not porous enough you have the option of deleting the shell altogether so that all you have is a generic Android tablet. I've never had the need to do that. I run lots of apps and they all work fine as is.

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StealthWealth
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Re: Recommend a cheap, small tablet?

Post by StealthWealth » Mon Sep 30, 2013 12:32 pm

After a lot of research we settled on a Nexus 7 and it is fantastic. Have traveled internationally and it performed fantastically. We could watch over 8 hours of movies without a charge. It is the highest rated 7 inch tablet and it is easy to see why. We were able to get it for about $170.

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Re: Recommend a cheap, small tablet?

Post by lawman3966 » Mon Sep 30, 2013 4:28 pm

I'm still learning about the offerings in this area myself.

One thing you may want to consider is whether the device has a slot for a micro SD card. There are several discussions online about this, that are easy enough to google for.

There are two basic schools of thought. The first contends that extensive device-based storage is unnecessary, as long as there's a wifi connection to the cloud available. The second contends that there's no substitute for having downloaded, stored data for various purposes. One user stated that he didn't want to be left without his media (movie or whatever) if he temporarily lacked a wifi connection. Since you said you'd be traveling this is something to consider.

As I recall, the Nook has micro SD card support while the 2013 Nexus 7 and Kindle Fire do not.

If you travel to an area that doesn't have a wifi connection, having a 64 gb SD card installed to which you have previously saved all the books and movies you need would save you from having to go hunting for a wifi connection.

I don't have a specific product recommendation in mind. I just wanted to mention that this should be one of the factors to consider.

yukon50
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Re: Recommend a cheap, small tablet?

Post by yukon50 » Mon Sep 30, 2013 5:11 pm

I will be using it mostly for browsing internet and watching sports.

Will try to buy something used.

Haven't considered buying a phone and using it for internet/sports. Maybe I will look into that, too.

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Re: Recommend a cheap, small tablet?

Post by imbogled » Mon Sep 30, 2013 5:12 pm

Google Nexus 7 16gb...................... Super price right now! $140.00 + Free Shipping

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Asus-Google-Nex ... 1035189447
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Re: Recommend a cheap, small tablet?

Post by RebusCannébus » Mon Sep 30, 2013 10:56 pm

yukon50 wrote:I will be using it mostly for browsing internet and watching sports.

Will try to buy something used.

Haven't considered buying a phone and using it for internet/sports. Maybe I will look into that, too.
Nook HD+, currently selling new for $149; refurb'd on eBay (with the manufacturer's one-year warranty) for south of $120. This is a lightweight (by design, to appeal to the e-reader crowd) 9-inch tablet. I just returned a 7-inch tablet so I could order one of the Nook HD+ refurbs. Best $118 I ever spent (assuming it's not DOA :P ). Pro's: great display, price, SD card slot. Cons: no camera(s), proprietary charger. Bottom line: Incredible bang for the buck.
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Re: Recommend a cheap, small tablet?

Post by The Wizard » Mon Sep 30, 2013 11:07 pm

yukon50 wrote:I will be using it mostly for browsing internet and watching sports.

Will try to buy something used.

Haven't considered buying a phone and using it for internet/sports. Maybe I will look into that, too.
I have both; a 4" phone screen can be challenging for some folks, tho my near eyesight is pretty good.
A 7" to 10" tablet is better, but it depends on your portability constraints...
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frugaltype
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Re: Recommend a cheap, small tablet?

Post by frugaltype » Tue Oct 01, 2013 7:30 am

The Wizard wrote: A 7" to 10" tablet is better, but it depends on your portability constraints...
I bought a tablet (padded fabric) case from Vera Bradley and sewed it to the back of my VB matching fabric pocketbook. It's hardly noticeable.

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Re: Recommend a cheap, small tablet?

Post by rgb73 » Tue Oct 01, 2013 9:05 am

I'm typing this post on my new nexus 7. Its the first tablet I've owned and its great, awesome screen. Really good if you use googles services.

Must admit I find using a tablet frustrating at times, certain cut/paste things are too difficult, and the screen keyboard is just not easy to use.

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Re: Recommend a cheap, small tablet?

Post by Toons » Tue Oct 01, 2013 9:21 am

Google Nexus 7,rarely leaves my side after a year of ownership,do your research :happy

http://www.google.com/nexus/tablets/
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frugaltype
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Re: Recommend a cheap, small tablet?

Post by frugaltype » Tue Oct 01, 2013 5:19 pm

rgb73 wrote:I'm typing this post on my new nexus 7. Its the first tablet I've owned and its great, awesome screen. Really good if you use googles services.

Must admit I find using a tablet frustrating at times, certain cut/paste things are too difficult, and the screen keyboard is just not easy to use.
What I discovered with my Nook HD+ is to look at the keyboard to be sure the right letter colors up. Much more useful than looking at what one is typing.

Also, it seems to detect where the max pressure is - learning that helped me with selecting items that are close together.

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Re: Recommend a cheap, small tablet?

Post by montanagirl » Thu Oct 03, 2013 6:02 pm

I got a Samsung Android for about 170 and I find it really hard to use...so screwy with the screen swipe thing, the whole different OS and virtual keyboard. Whether I use a stylus or my finger, I have trouble controlling the screen and font size..it may just be a tablet thing generally but it drives me crazy.

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Re: Recommend a cheap, small tablet?

Post by The Wizard » Thu Oct 03, 2013 6:20 pm

caroljm36 wrote:I got a Samsung Android for about 170 and I find it really hard to use...so screwy with the screen swipe thing, the whole different OS and virtual keyboard. Whether I use a stylus or my finger, I have trouble controlling the screen and font size..it may just be a tablet thing generally but it drives me crazy.
This is why for many folks it's better to get a tablet with a mechanical keyboard option.
The keyboard on my Transformer Infinity also serves as a platform base so I don't have to hold the thing like a magazine the whole time...
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Re: Recommend a cheap, small tablet?

Post by frequency » Thu Oct 03, 2013 6:26 pm

The wife and I have been holding off buying a tablet for a while, and will probably buy one this month. I've been eyeing the new Intel Atom bay trail processor. There are a number of tablet devices with this Intel chip coming out this month of October and in November running Windows 8.1, and you can also load Linux (if the kernel is a new enough version to support it) or Android on the device if you so desire. The smallest models look like they will have 8" screens, and the larget models will have 10" screens. The 8" screen models should be sub-$300.

The utility in an Intel based tablet is that hardware wise its a scaled down laptop, versus a scaled up cellphone that are the current tablet offering. So, you could run a full fledged office suite or other productive software that you are used to on a laptop or desktop on your tablet if you so desire. Otherwise, if you don't find the features I mention critical I'm sure the other suggestions from other posters would suffice.

The model I'm eyeing is the 10" Asus Transformer Book T100 because it has an optional keyboard dock to convert it to a netbook (small laptop).

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frugaltype
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Re: Recommend a cheap, small tablet?

Post by frugaltype » Thu Oct 03, 2013 6:30 pm

caroljm36 wrote:I got a Samsung Android for about 170 and I find it really hard to use...so screwy with the screen swipe thing, the whole different OS and virtual keyboard. Whether I use a stylus or my finger, I have trouble controlling the screen and font size..it may just be a tablet thing generally but it drives me crazy.
I thought that too initially, but it became more comfortable with practice. It's just necessary to stop expecting it to be an interface you're used to.

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Taz
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Re: Recommend a cheap, small tablet?

Post by Taz » Fri Oct 04, 2013 5:48 am

The Wizard wrote:
caroljm36 wrote:I got a Samsung Android for about 170 and I find it really hard to use...so screwy with the screen swipe thing, the whole different OS and virtual keyboard. Whether I use a stylus or my finger, I have trouble controlling the screen and font size..it may just be a tablet thing generally but it drives me crazy.
This is why for many folks it's better to get a tablet with a mechanical keyboard option.
The keyboard on my Transformer Infinity also serves as a platform base so I don't have to hold the thing like a magazine the whole time...
Bluetooth key boards are a good option but they impact battery life and are generally inconvenient to carry without added bulk.
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Re: Recommend a cheap, small tablet?

Post by supton » Fri Oct 04, 2013 10:01 am

I got a Nextbook 7 (I think) when I wasn't sure about if I wanted a tablet. I liked it, but the wife upgraded me to an iPad Mini in short order. Which I like more--can drop it into my pants pocket most of the time, and I like the camera on it. I miss the SD card though; if I was a serious music person that would be a definate drawback. [I don't want to know what this iPad cost me...] The Nextbook is now a music device at work.

I have a $40 bluetooth keyboard from Amazon which is decent. Not perfect, but works well enough. I leave it at home though, and only use it sporadically. The tablet gets used for reading books and minor websurfing, and some photo taking. Some journaling too. Some music listening but not that much at the moment. Real question is, what do you plan to use yours for? When I got my Nextbook I couldn't imagine using the camera nor BT, now I can't imagine not having those.

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Re: Recommend a cheap, small tablet?

Post by BlueEars » Fri Oct 04, 2013 4:49 pm

StealthWealth wrote:After a lot of research we settled on a Nexus 7 and it is fantastic. Have traveled internationally and it performed fantastically. We could watch over 8 hours of movies without a charge. It is the highest rated 7 inch tablet and it is easy to see why. We were able to get it for about $170.
Is that the new or old version of Nexus 7. I think Google has caused confusion by referring to the 2012 and 2013 models by "Nexus 7". They have different processors:
1) the 2012 is this: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00DB3 ... d_i=507846
2) and the 2013 is this: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00DVF ... d_i=507846

I bought a new (around July 2013 release) one and that is going for $229 at Best Buy or Amazon. I find it hard to believe the price is as low as $170 but maybe I'm wrong?

My Nexus 7 is really just right for my needs. Happy camper.

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Re: Recommend a cheap, small tablet?

Post by linenfort » Sat Oct 05, 2013 10:23 pm

I've heard good things about the Calibre software. Glad to see it mentioned here and can't wait to try it.

I had no idea that the Nook was an Android tablet until reading this thread. Neat! I'm a little disappointed, though, that bookstore B&N's own website doesn't have "lightning-fast" spelled properly. (On the Nook HD page). I mean, it's a bookstore.
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Re: Recommend a cheap, small tablet?

Post by discman017 » Sat Oct 05, 2013 11:04 pm

Yet another vote here for the Nook HD. I had a first-generation Nexus 7 for a while and liked it a lot. Recently replaced it with the Nook HD, which has a better screen and is much faster. And the price is significantly lower than even the first-gen Nexus 7, let alone the second-gen.

One recommendation: You can turn your Nook HD or HD+ into a plain-vanilla Android tablet, replacing the Nook software (which is heavily modified Android) with stock Android, which is smoother and faster. If you're reasonably good with computers, it's pretty easy. Just follow the step-by-step guide here: http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthr ... ?t=2317500

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Re: Recommend a cheap, small tablet?

Post by Cash » Sun Oct 06, 2013 8:10 am

I've had a 2013 Nexus 7 for a few weeks now. It's fantastic; I have 0 complaints. The screen and the form factor are killer. I also think that it's better than Kindle or Nook in that it's loaded only with the fast, non-bloated stock Android instead of the seller's proprietary overlay onto Android, and you will receive subsequent versions of Android as soon as they're released.

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Re: Recommend a cheap, small tablet?

Post by BlueEars » Sun Oct 06, 2013 10:37 am

Here are the cnet reviews: http://reviews.cnet.com/tablets/

I did a lot of about my usage, read the reviews, tested the tablets in store. For most of my needs I just want to sit at my easy chair and plunk around. The new Nexus 7 is easy for me to hold, is very responsive, and has a very sharp display. It's great for the price.

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Re: Recommend a cheap, small tablet?

Post by mildred66 » Sun Oct 06, 2013 5:43 pm

+1 for Nexus 7. So great for travel. Awesome battery life.

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Re: Recommend a cheap, small tablet?

Post by nonnie » Sun Oct 06, 2013 8:44 pm

rgb73 wrote:I'm typing this post on my new nexus 7. Its the first tablet I've owned and its great, awesome screen. Really good if you use googles services.

Must admit I find using a tablet frustrating at times, certain cut/paste things are too difficult, and the screen keyboard is just not easy to use.
+2 Two more satisfied Nexus 7 users. I have the first version, my partner, a heavy-duty user, just traded his first N7 for a second generation 2013 model @ $229 and loves it. They've recently released a 4G LTE if that's what you need.

As far as the keyboard, I hardly ever use it. One of the things I like most about the N7 and Android is the fantastic voice recognition software. I find it 80-90% effective and use it quite often. I also could NOT do without the SWYPE keyboard-- not typing needed, just swipe over the keys.

https://play.google.com/store/apps/deta ... .swype.dtc


As far as cutting and pasting--it does take a little patience. I find it's much easier with Gmail than with Outlook but all in all I love my Nexus 7-- it's a real workhorse reading in bed at night without any other light.

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LH
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Re: Recommend a cheap, small tablet?

Post by LH » Mon Oct 07, 2013 8:50 pm

kindle fire is reportedly sold at cost, so it has a good chance of being best deal.

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Re: Recommend a cheap, small tablet?

Post by BlueEars » Mon Oct 07, 2013 9:05 pm

LH wrote:kindle fire is reportedly sold at cost, so it has a good chance of being best deal.
I have an original Kindle Fire. It depends on your use model as to what is best for you. Bezos has said that he wants to sell Amazon content so this is a loss leader.

My use model involves not paying for content, except occasionally. So for me the Nexus 7 was better.

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Re: Recommend a cheap, small tablet?

Post by LH » Tue Oct 08, 2013 7:45 pm

BlueEars wrote:
LH wrote:kindle fire is reportedly sold at cost, so it has a good chance of being best deal.
I have an original Kindle Fire. It depends on your use model as to what is best for you. Bezos has said that he wants to sell Amazon content so this is a loss leader.

My use model involves not paying for content, except occasionally. So for me the Nexus 7 was better.
when you use a nexus 7 vs a kindle fire to do a task, when do you have to pay to use the fire, and not with the nexus 7?

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Re: Recommend a cheap, small tablet?

Post by BlueEars » Tue Oct 08, 2013 8:34 pm

LH wrote:
BlueEars wrote:
LH wrote:kindle fire is reportedly sold at cost, so it has a good chance of being best deal.
I have an original Kindle Fire. It depends on your use model as to what is best for you. Bezos has said that he wants to sell Amazon content so this is a loss leader.

My use model involves not paying for content, except occasionally. So for me the Nexus 7 was better.
when you use a nexus 7 vs a kindle fire to do a task, when do you have to pay to use the fire, and not with the nexus 7?
OK, you got me there. My 1st generation Kindle Fire had a very mediocre web access, but at the time I got it that was the only low cost tablet that I knew of that I could take on a vacation. It could be the newer Kindle's have comparable web access functions to the Nexus 7. I have not compared them myself.

I don't typically buy Ebooks. My use model being cheap library books. For on-the-go people, Ebooks are great. I imagine the Kindle Fire and Nexus 7 would be about comparable there.

If I missed on this I'm sure others will speak up. I'm willing to learn the truth. :wink:

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Re: Recommend a cheap, small tablet?

Post by yukon50 » Wed Oct 09, 2013 5:45 am

I will probably try to find something used for under $100 because my traveling will be rough on it (backpacks getting thrown around). Leaning towards the Kindle but still considering all options.

Won't be using it extensively. Just want to have something to watch sports games with.

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Re: Recommend a cheap, small tablet?

Post by frugaltype » Wed Oct 09, 2013 6:10 am

nonnie wrote: As far as the keyboard, I hardly ever use it. One of the things I like most about the N7 and Android is the fantastic voice recognition software. I find it 80-90% effective and use it quite often.
Nonnie
How do you use it in a public place with other people around, like a train or waiting room?

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