- 2 Posts
My Third Day Xoom Review
I don't suppose my views will be popular here but I feel like I need some closure.
My occupation is very computer oriented. My first experience with Android was the Mooto Droid 1, now I carry a Droid 2. I use these for nearly everything, but it does have limitations. I also own a netbook, a Sager 7280 laptop, and my desktop workstation.
I thought tablets were a joke from the first time Apple mentioned the iPad. Never could understand what they are for or why anybody would want a crippled gigantic cellphone. Regardless, they have become one of the hottest tech items out there and I had to find out why. I really don't think I need one, but my curiosity would not let me rest so when the Xoom hit the shelves I bagged it for $800.
30 minutes later I walked into Borders with my bran new shiny Xoom in hand and got in line at the Cafe a cup of coffee. Feels awkward to stand there in line with this big metal/glass thing in one hand while trying to reach for a card out of the wallet.
Sat down and got online with the tablet for the first time. Past the first prompts and I'm at the desktop. The very first thing I notice is how heavy this thing is. The surface is slippery and there is not a lot of room to really have a good grip. I find that using a tablet is much like using a laptop as you hold it up in both hands. We have all tried that. Unless your holding it up, it's not very comfortable to use as it lays on the tabletop. A kickstand may go a long way here, or some sort of dock but I think going as far as carrying accessories kind of defeats the point of a tablet.
Typing was easier than I expected and I found that I was typing pretty quick without any learning curve. Once I was in "the zone" browsing my favorite sites and reading news I have to say it's a good experience. Feels intuitive, with the touch screen it's remarkably easy to navigate and makes for a unique and simpler browsing experience. Text, pictures, videos all come very natural on this device. Although, sometimes I wish videos would simply play as embedded in the page and not through the player app.
Eventually I was about done using it. I decided to go browse some books on the store shelves. With the tablet in one hand, my coffee in the other, and a book somewhere in between was a balancing act. The tablet is too big to put away anywhere, I can't fit it in a pocket and there is nothing to do with it. Just hold it.
I quickly realized that if I'm going to take this thing anywhere with me I have to plan ahead. I have to be certain a) I'm going to need it and b) have a plan for what to do with it when I'm done. Once it's with you, your stuck with it.
It reminded me of carrying a DSLR around. Amazing tool! However, you have to plan what to do with it and still frequently find yourself wishing you either had it or had left it behind.
Keeping that in mind, a tablet is no more convenient than just simply walking in with a netbook in the first place.
Once I came home I got it on my wifi, installed my remote desktop software and put it away. I found the remote desktop was very easy to use. Big plus here, something I often need access to especially when not at a desktop/laptop.
The next evening I'm cooking in the kitchen. I happened to have both tablet and phone on the corner of the tabletop. My occupation leaves me as always on call so I'm keeping up with emails as they come in. What I noticed is that every time the devices buzzed me with an event, I always reached for the cell phone first. In fact, I never touched the tablet. It was a lot easier to just use the smartphone.
It's my third day with it. The battery in this thing is amazing, I'm at 40% and I have not charged it once yet. In fact, the charger is still packaged in the bag.
I have a better understanding of the device in general but I'm still not sure what it's for.
I'm sure the tablet platform has it's place somewhere for the consumer. There is certainly room for the technology to improve too. However, there is no place for it in my daily routine. I'm not sure what I was expecting, I guess I got caught up in the excitement but I would be surprised if my experience is uncommon.
- 02-27-2011, 02:05 PM #2
- 02-27-2011, 02:07 PM #3
- 02-27-2011, 02:10 PM #4
You made some great points which I have been concerned with. I was on the fence about the Xoom and have decided to wait and see what happens with other tablets. The Flyer in particular has my attention because of the stylus and note taking capabilities. The thing is that I don't like to carry around my laptop everywhere which means I probably won't want to carry it around all the time either. If I'm home I'll use my laptop so I don't see the need there. I don't want to leave it in my car in the heat for extended times so do I carry a manpurse with it in it? I think if I do get one I'll run into the same questions/comments you did. It is cool and a new gadget, but how long will that excitement last? Anyway, thanks for the review.
(as I say all that I'm sure I'll get one...the technolust is too strong)
- 02-27-2011, 02:39 PM #5
- 02-27-2011, 02:41 PM #6
Eh, he can return it I'm sure. Nothing wrong with giving something a try, even if you think you may not like it. Because sometimes you do!
Like me with brussel sprouts.
OP didn't sound like he was whining or complaining at all really. Just posting his experience.
- 02-27-2011, 02:43 PM #7
- 02-27-2011, 02:44 PM #8
- 02-27-2011, 02:48 PM #9
On the other hand i cant put it down! But you are def right, you cant do much with other things in your hand and you are worried about dropping it.
My wife ran a 1/2 marathon today and i used it all day to take pics, post to facebook and chat. Also surfed the web jumping off my rooted Droid X wireless tether. I had a bookbag which was helpful to carry it in when i needed my hands free and when i wanted i used the portfolio case to prop it up comfortably. In between i would just go to my easily available phone. Having the extra screen real estate and snappy processor was very helpful and enjoyable. I walked around with the Xoom in one hand, albeit carefully. With the app Thumb Keyboard i type easily using both hands and hold it. I do not have a laptop so i used it in the hotel constantly. For me im i find it very useful and today was a very positive experience with it. As time goes on i know i'll incorporate it more and more into my routine.
- 02-27-2011, 02:53 PM #10
Great pics and convincing pros to a tab. Seems like if you have a backpack or some kind of shoulder holder, you're good to go. Like the OP said, you have to plan to have the tab on you and act accordingly. Meaning, a carrying case.
Good job to your wife! She's cute too!
- 02-27-2011, 02:57 PM #11
- 02-27-2011, 05:10 PM #12
Here's my tablet experience (nook, not XOOM, will buy XOOM when wifi is available though)
I normally have computing devices pre tablet. My Phone, Netbook, and high end Desktop. My phone is my go to device for when I'm on the go, my netbook is my choice when I'm relatively stationary (in the car/plane, in a hotel room, at school between classes, etc.), and my desktop at, well, my desk
Since I got the nook, I found that my netbook sits almost unused. I normally only used it for web browsing, and maybe some sd video, very painful flash, etc. The nook does it in a more enjoyable way. I think anyone that's looking to replace a phone for sheer portable computing is going to be heavily disappointed (as you discovered), but it offers a more natural way to interact with the web, does video better than my netbook, flash is similiar, music is better. I have it on me almost constantly at home. I only take it out of the house when I'm going to be stationary, or have some kind of book bag/travel bag on me.
I know many people say "I can buy a netbook for the price of even the cheapest tablet, and it's more functional." For me, the netbook is also more painful to use.
- 02-27-2011, 05:20 PM #13
- 02-27-2011, 05:30 PM #14
- 02-27-2011, 05:37 PM #15
- 02-27-2011, 05:47 PM #16
- 02-27-2011, 05:51 PM #17
- 02-27-2011, 07:01 PM #18
- 02-27-2011, 07:13 PM #19
Loving my XOOM right now, I use it on my commute and for couch surfing. It seems like you (OP) can't justify the tablet lifestyle right now, which makes a lot of sense. I wasn't sure I could at first but now I am really enjoying having the XOOM.
- 02-27-2011, 10:18 PM #20
- 02-28-2011, 12:22 AM #21
- 02-28-2011, 01:44 AM #22
- 02-28-2011, 01:50 AM #23
- 02-28-2011, 09:49 AM #24
- 02-28-2011, 09:52 AM #25
Here's my thing. I'm in outside sales, so I'm always on the road meeting with clients at their place of business. I've had everything. Netbook, laptop, iPad, phone with projector, etc...if it is a mobile computing device I've tried using it. Aside from the XOOM, the iPad came the closest but its tie to iTunes and lack of Flash support we're very frustrating. I need something with killer battery life, and that can turn on in an instant. The XOOM is PERFECT! Now, I just need a decent portfolio case, not that junk Motorola sells.