Attention shoppers: Hot holiday gadget reviewson November 15, 2012 @ 11:50 am (Updated: 11:50 am - 11/17/12 )
Apple iPad mini:
"It's the perfect tablet device," he says.
When you list out the differences between the iPad mini and the newest version of the iPad, Edwards says the case doesn't look good for the mini.
"The differences are that it uses the hardware of the iPad 2 which was a year and a half ago. It's smaller. The screen is not a retina display, and it's $329 so it's way more expensive than other similarly sized tablets."
But Edwards says for him the mini is the new iPad.
"To me this is the iPad. This is the iPad that Apple wanted to get to," says Edwards. "Since I picked it up I haven't picked up, like literally in my hands, my other iPad."
The smaller, lighter design, he says, makes it more portable than the larger version of the iPad. If you have kids at home he also feels safer having the little ones tote it around rather than the more cumbersome larger version.
The difference in displays when compared to the latest iPad's retina display is not so big he'd go back to the larger version.
Compared to other tablets of similar size, it blows the Kindle Fire and Nexus 7 out of the water, he says.
"Even for $329, I would totally recommend that people pick this up," says Edwards.
A few weeks in, Bishop is sticking with the Surface, and likes it, but he likes it most when you're not comparing it to other things out there.
"I realize this is faint praise," he says, adding that there are a few things he likes about the Surface more than the iPad.
He particularly likes the ability to set up multiple user accounts.
"It's my apps. It's my layout. It's got my picture in the corner," says Bishop. When his wife signs in, it's her setup. "I really, really like that it's good as a family tablet."
But Bishop doesn't sound convinced of its superiority overall.
Edwards says he thinks Microsoft was aiming for an area that was already pretty well covered.
"We had smartphones and we had laptops and then Apple came out with a mass-market tablet that people adopted. People expected Microsoft, Google etc to follow suit. But instead of going for the space that rests between the smartphone and the laptop, Microsoft seems to have gone for the space between the tablet and the laptop which is a much, much smaller gap. I don't think it does either of those things particularly well."
Also considering the Surface Pro, which is expected to come out at what will likely be a significantly higher price point, Edwards says for him it won't win.
"There's no way I'm picking that over a Mac Book Air."
This is the device that Bishop is most excited about, and Edwards concurs that it's great.
Bishop says he bought the Kindle Paperwhite with some of his birthday money and he hasn't been disappointed.
"You know how if you read your phone in bed at night with the lights off, you turn the device off and you can see the iPad or whatever in your eyes. This does not do that. I love this thing," says Bishop.
He explains the light is oriented differently so that while the screen is illuminated, it doesn't burn the image into your eyes right before you shut down to try and sleep.
Edwards agrees this is the best e-ink reader on the market.
"If you love reading, e-ink readers are the best thing to buy because they don't shine that light into your eyes. The problem has always been that once you turn the light off you have to get some sort of clip on light accessory that is awkward," says Edwards. "This solves that problem."
Another of Bishop's favorite features when using this device is how he's able to shoot things to it from an extension on his web browser.
"You're reading a story that you don't really have time to read during your workday and you just hit the little button up in the corner of the browser and that very story is waiting for you full text on your Kindle when you go to bed at night."
Starting at $119, Bishop definitely recommends this for all the readers in the family.
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