With so many options, choosing between a netbook or tablet can be difficult. It is easy to fall into the trap of just buying one of each–simply because you can. If your pockets are not as deep that you can afford to buy netbooks and tablets of every color, size, and brand, however, then knowing which of these devices best suits your needs is a good starting point.
Netbook vs Tablet
When netbooks first arrived on the scene back in 2008, the whole world welcomed the portable, cheap, and feature-rich laptops that were sold for a reasonable price. However, all that changed when the iPad came out during the first quarter of 2010. While the iPad (and other tablets since then) have taken the world by storm and now surpass the sales of netbooks, the truth is that they may not for everyone. Here are the pros and cons of owning a netbook or a tablet.
Netbook favors writers
If you are a writer, student, or engaged in any type of moderate content production, then the netbook may be your best option. Not only does it have a long battery life, but not having to carry around the electrical cord everywhere you go is a plus. You can easily slip the device inside your bag and probably wouldn’t even know that it is there which of course provides extreme portability.
Unfortunately, while the netbook makes for a great companion for the mobile warrior, it may pose a problem when used by serious content producers. Most complaints about netbooks center around having small keyboards and screens as well as slow processor speeds. You may find that it will take you a little longer to finish your work with its size limitations. However, if you plan on using it on a plane or in transit, then you will find it to be extremely useful.
Tablets favor content consumption
Tablets, on the other hand, are ideal for content consumption and provide a much better multimedia experience. If you need something to entertain you or do some light reading while you are on your way to work, then you will find the tablet to be incredibly useful. You can use it to listen to music, watch videos, check your mail, and browse the web. You can even download games to help keep you occupied while you are waiting in line.
However, for some, the benefits end there. Even if you purchase a bluetooth keyboard, you still may have trouble even coming close to the benefits that a netbook can do compared to a tablet. A big downside as I see it is that when you need to work with multiple program windows for multi-tasking purposes, tablets tend to lack in this particular area. In addition, the added keyboard adds to the “stuff” that you need to carry with you in an order to be productive.
You can definitely make this type of tablet/keyboard setup work. You will need to either buy a case that has a bluetooth keyboard or keep with you a stand-alone keyboard but this type of setup can allow for you to be fairly productive.
While one could argue that there is minimal difference between a netbook and a tablet/case/keyboard combination so with all the benefits of a tablet then why not go that route? That is a very good point and really the only difference now would be price as compared to the features you want. With most netbooks coming in between $200-$300, you can certainly find a tablet in that ballpark with your higher end tablets in the range of $350-$500 and higher.
To choose between netbooks or tablets, all you need to do is find out what you plan on doing with it. If you are a content creator or a mobile warrior only and don’t care for the multimedia capabilities of a tablet, then go for the netbook. But if you are like me and are someone who will not only enjoy the crystal-clear resolution of tablets for games, video content and reading but also like the portability and slight nuisance of a keyboard then choosing a tablet may be the best approach.
As technology keeps evolving, giving you smaller, thinner, and lighter ways of connecting yourself to the world and consuming or creating information, choosing between a netbook or tablet pc can be tricky. Just try to keep in mind your primary reason for having the device and you’ll be in good shape but with tablet technology advancing at a rapid rate it really is hard to not go that route.