Tablets now come in smaller packages, write Rod Chester and Jennifer Dudley- Nicholson
SAMSUNG GALAXY NOTE II 4G Samsung, $ 779 mobicity. com. au
THE second coming of Samsung’s phablet is indisputably handy and more impressive than the last. The Note II offers a 1.6GHz quad- core processor for extra speed, fresh Google Android Jelly Bean software, a sleeker S Pen stylus with more features, and a bigger screen. Samsung has packed a 5.5- inch display into it even though its weight has only increased by 4g. It also features 4G connectivity. Its 3100mAh battery means you can use this extra speed and still go a full day between charges.
G1 KINDLE FIRE HD Amazon, $ 260-$ 339 mobicity. com. au
THE Kindle Fire HD straddles the bridge between e- book readers and tablets. Coming from Amazon, you won’t be surprised to see the menu has options for books, audio books and shopping but you won’t find options a traditional e- book reader has, like apps for email. The 7- inch screen has an average 1280x800 display, and it uses a 1.2GHz dual- core processor, 1GB RAM and storage of 16GB or 32GB depending on the model. But be warned: as a grey import Australians won’t be able to download apps from the Amazon Appstore or purchase digital music or videos.
KIDIGI 7 Mobicity, $ 99 mobicity. com. au
THIS tablet is miniature in size and in price. The KiDiGi 7- inch tablet is more than you could expect from a $ 100 outlay, even though it isn’t the finest tablet available. Its body is solid and its Android Ice Cream Sandwich chugs along reasonably well with a 1.5GHz processor and 512MB RAM. Just 8GB storage is built into the unit, although it also offers space for a 32GB memory card and a basic, 0.3- megapixel camera up front for video calls. It runs most apps. The most obvious corner cut is the screen. Users must persist with a display that isn’t bright, very clear or easy to see from an angle. That said, the KiDiGi would make a great tablet for kids.
SAMSUNG GALAXY TAB 2 7.0, $ 299 samsung.com/au
IF YOU’RE new to the Samsung tablet world, the range can be confusing. They look similar and are all named Galaxy Tab with numbers to differentiate each item. The Tab 2 7.0 runs on the fresh Android software, Ice Cream Sandwich, is 19cm tall and weighs 341g. The 7- inch display is adequate, and it has a MicroSD memory card slot to expand storage from the built- in 8GB to 32GB. The tablet comes loaded with music, games and Reader’s Hub apps, as well as some extra apps.
KOBO GLO Kobo, $ 159.99 kobo. com
THE Glo, with its 6- inch screen, is only a tad bigger than its stablemate the Kobo Mini, but that extra bit of screen gives you a page size closer to a small paperback. The Glo is 11cm long, 1cm thick and weighs 185g. It has a 16- level greyscale display with a resolution of 1024x768 pixels, and 2GB of built- in storage with space for a 32GB MicroSD card. Atop is a control for what Kobo calls the ComfortLight, if you like to read in bed.