So, I got to try the competition out

Discussion in 'Off-Topic' started by DaveSt, Nov 9, 2010.

  1. DaveSt
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    DaveSt iPad Junkie

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    First off, this is NOT meant to be a "iOS vs. Android" or "Apple vs. The World" thread, just my impressions.

    I friend of mine just received an Archos 70 tablet (see link below) and knowing that I have an Ipad he asked if I would like to use it for a bit to get my impressions.

    http://www.archos.com/products/ta/archos_70it/index.html?country=us〈=en

    Since there has been a lot of speculation about Android tablets around here I thought I would give my impressions after a few hours of use.

    My first comment when I picked up the device was "You're telling me this thing only cost $250?". The build quality is pretty good, but certainly much more plastic feeling than the Ipad. The front facing stereo speakers are a nice touch and much better sounding than what the Ipad has. The device is super thin and light and is almost the exact same size as a Kindle.

    Moving on the the device features, it has only 8GB of memory, but the real beauty is that it has an integrated micro-SD slot as well as a mini-USB port. I was able to mount both external hard drives and USB memory sticks with no issues at all. I could use multiple micro-SD cards as well. I have to admit, the external storage capability gave me more than a twinge of jealousy. I only tried playing music and movies from the devices, but the performance was fine. There is also a HDMI-out port.

    The interface on the device is fantastic. Multi-tasking is enabled from the start and works in much the same way it does on iOS 4.x devices. Desktop widgets are supported (I tried stock ticker and weather widgets). Full access to system functions is available (full view and control of system processes for example). Interactive / animated wallpapers are supported which are kind of neat but probably not something I would use long term. The device is multi-touch, so pinch zooming and everything I was used to with iOS works almost the same way.

    The device is able to run Flash with some exceptions. Believe it or not, the device did not turn into a pile of melted plastic when running web based Flash content. I could not perceive any noticeable slow down when viewing Flash content either. The Android 2.1 OS does not seem to support Flash 10.1 content however, so there are still things that don't work. Also, Hulu blocks access from Android based devices so you still cannot view their content (they are working on a "premium" app" for Android which explains that).

    Web browsing on the 7" screen was surprisingly good. I missed the extra vertical space the Ipad gives me, but besides that browsing was easy and fast. The marketplace isn't as well organized as the App Store, but it isn't the nightmare I had come to expect from the rantings I have seen at various (mainly Apple centered) sites.

    Overall, I found the device to be very nice which was a surprise to me after hearing so much about how Android based tablets suck. My impressions were quite to the contrary. How much of this has to do with custom Archos additions to Android I cannot say. I still prefer a 10" device honestly but for $250 is is amazing how much you can get. I would love to have a 10" version to play with.
  2. Hasty
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    Hasty iPad Ninja

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    Good review, thanks. The more competition the faster the tablet market will evolve.
    I like the extra storage options but with streaming videos, docs and music, it has ceased to be much of a problem for me. That said apple made a number of compromises to get extended battery life. Did you get any idea how long it lasts in use?
  3. Superbike81
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    Superbike81 iPad Addict

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    I'll say it confidently, Android is better than iOS. I love my iPad, but I love Android even more. Unless Apple does something big with the next generation iPad, I'll be picking up an Android based tablet before the end of next year. But I'll continue to enjoy my iPad until another tablet comes out that really catches my attention, so far none have made me want to switch.
  4. DaveSt
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    DaveSt iPad Junkie

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    I agree with you about competition being good for the consumer. I hope Apple adds some of these features to the next Ipad (and a camera which I forgot to mention the Archos has).

    The battery life is very similar to that of the Ipad. If I can trust the battery meter I would estimate about 10 hours of video play. I did quite a bit of Wi-Fi surfing and general playing around with it as well. Of course, the smaller screen probably helps in that area.
  5. madsquabbles
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    madsquabbles iPF Novice

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    $299 will get you the 10 inch archos. they'll be back in stock on the 18th.

    from the reviews i've seen the only things i dislike are the navigation buttons are on the screen so they cover some of the display on apps. the other is the non-removable battery. even non-rooted, i've had apps lock up my evo and only a battery pull would fix it. it'll be a pain to wait 8+ hours for the battery to drain to free up your device.
  6. gentlefury
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    gentlefury iPad Guru

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    Sadly the problem with Android is that initial impressions are GREAT and very impressive. I really loved my droid when I first got it....but as you settle into it it gets more and more tedious and less and less intuitive. With my iPad the longer I've used it to the more I've come to love it....I freakin hate my droid now and want to smash it against a wall most days. Plus Android updates are OTA...so if they have an update that takes away your root status you either have to do it or have a popup every 15 mins reminding you there is an update...whether you want it or not...it is so damned annoying it is barely tolerable!!

    Sad thing is the only reason I even have my Droid rooted is because at stock the CPU is downclocked to such an unbelievably slow rate that its almost painful to operate....so it must stay rooted to keep it at a useable pace.....also I get MUCH better battery life since it downclocks to below spec when not in use.

    Overall sadly the Android OS is horrible compared to iOS!
  7. Superbike81
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    Superbike81 iPad Addict

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    I disagree, I find the Android OS to get better and smoother as I learn more about it.

    The Archos 101 might be a good competitor for the iPad, but I'm concerned with it's lack of 3G capability. Perhaps a USB 3G device would work with it though.
  8. madsquabbles
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    madsquabbles iPF Novice

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    i disagree also. at first i didn't like the android os, but the more i used it the better it got. i like not having to go to multiple locations to adjust settings/prefs of some apps. why do i have to go to settings to change a preference in an application instead of just changing it in the app?

    the multiple physical buttons are a plus also, though sbs does increase the function of the home button.

    the best thing ios has for it actually is the way it's locked down. hardware has to meet a certain quality standard as well as apps. i just bought a $150 sylvania tablet... pure garbage. but then again the choice to buy a crap tablet could be a plus. i sure wouldn't want to buy my daughter a $500 device to use right now.

    as for droid oc'ing there really isn't that much difference in performance from 600 to 1300mhz. it's mainly the customizations that increased the performance. without benchmarks it's really not a big difference since there's not really much that actually taxes the processor anyways. games get a slight boost, but since my gpu didn't get oc'ed not much increased. flash, however, did get a boost. at 600mhz it was running faster than the iphone which used the same processor downclocked to 550. that said, my droid did 1300 without problems but i kept it at 800 for daily use.

    neither my rooted droid or evo ever forced me to update. and i never had any pop ups. i did force a download of the droid update to stop it's accessing the network, but didn't have to install it since my custom recovery disallowed it.
  9. gentlefury
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    gentlefury iPad Guru

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    Well you are wrong, my droid is unusable under 800 MHz.
  10. hookbill
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    hookbill iPad Junkie

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    I think both OS has their plusses and minuses but I think the reason the OP opened this thread was not to discuss which OS was better but to discuss the differences of iPad vs Android Tablet.

    My only beef with the iPad so far is no multitasking. I personally don't need flash.

    OP if you're still around does the tablet have 2.2 Froyo Operating System?
  11. mwhartman
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    mwhartman Administrator Staff Member

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    I agree with Hook! The OP intended to discuss the differences (8 GB memory, integrated micro-SD slot as well as a mini-USB port. I was able to mount both external hard drives and USB memory sticks with no issues at all. I could use multiple micro-SD cards as well) of iPad and Android.

    I've owned the iPhone and Droid. If AT&T had better coverage I would still have my iPhone.

    When I returned to VZW I got a Droid. Initially, I felt I made a mistake getting a Droid. The iPhone was very intuitive and user friendly. Getting comfortable with Android took time. Now, however, my opinion, Android is a very solid OS. I'm rooted and my phone works extremely well. The navigation is equal to or better than the built in nav system in my RX 350. I'm eligible for an upgrade but, at this point, I have no reason to.

    For me, the biggest advantage for the iPad is the compatibility with my two Mac's not my phone.


    My two cents.

    Mike
  12. gentlefury
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    gentlefury iPad Guru

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    Unfortunately I feel exactly the opposite. I will never use AT&T and have been with verizon for years. I was totally psyched about the droid and really loved it for the first month or so...then its limitations started showing and the updates came that crippled the phone, then I got thru the 20 or so great apps and realized the market was nothing but spam and malware and bad code...most of which doesnt work as it should or crashes constantly.

    The biggest problem I had with my Droid was that Motorola released new android phones and decided they didn't give a crap about the last gen (this happened within 6 months of release too!!!)....so it took forever to get an update and when they finally did update it basically made the phone unusable...I started getting a few hours battery life, it would crash while in a call....it just because slow and unstable. It was also way too much hassle to root again, so I dealt with it until I couldnt anymore, and went thru the process of rooting again...now as I said I have to deal with a popup every 15 mins saying there is an update available!! But dealing with that popup is actually not as bad as dealing with the update!!

    The second Verizon gets an iPhone I will be switching!
    Last edited: Nov 14, 2010
  13. mwhartman
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    mwhartman Administrator Staff Member

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    You are not the first to comment on the annoyance of receiving the constant "update available" on their rooted Droid. Perhaps I am just lucky, but since rooting (I've installed seven or eight different roms) my Droid I've not received one notice from VZW that there was an available update.

    I can throw stones at Moto and Apple. Both have released products that have flaws. The initial Droid and iPhone and most recently the iPhone 4. The consumers wants/desire for "got to have the latest and greatest NOW" is the driving force, in my opinion. So we are just a culpable.

    Again, my two cents!

    Mike
  14. hookbill
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    hookbill iPad Junkie

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    I'm sorry for taking this thread off topic but this statement is, well I don't know how else to say it, totally not true.

    It took forever to get an upgrade? No, there were two upgrades that were done on a 2 month period. That led to 2.0.1. Next update 2.1 which came out in January. So between Nov. 2008, let's say 2 updates because the first one was just a fix that was sent out. Next update came in late June 2.2. That's 5 months between major updates. Word is that Gingerbread is set to release soon. And yes, the original Droid will get Gingerbread. They haven't forgotten the original Droid.

    Thats 3 updates in a years time. To me, that's awesome.

    I currently have a Droid 1 and Droid 2. I can't say I've never had an issue pop up but when one did, and that wasn't very often I was able to find out how to fix it.

    It's my experience that the problems you describe could have easily been fixed, either by merely clearing the cache of the apps or by doing a Factory Data Reset. If you had a task killer on you phone that was probably another issue. Task killers are not necessary.

    Rooting is simple. There are 1 step apps you can get from the Market to root your Droid. My Droid 2 and 1 are both stable, reliable devices.

    If you haven't done it in a while, take a trip over to our sister forum, Droid Forum - Covering all Verizon Droid Phones: Motorola Droid, Droid X, Droid 2, Droid Incredible and Droid Eris and see if we can't help you get your Droid up to speed. It's not that complicated. If you still want an iPhone that's fine but your Droid shouldn't be acting like you describe.

    Sorry for hijacking the thread. Please return to your original subject.
  15. madsquabbles
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    madsquabbles iPF Novice

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    i like that the archos and ipad have pretty much the same internal specs. dunno much about the screen though.

    the positive i can see by using a 101 vs an ipad is that wide screen movies with take up all the screen instead of having the black bars at the top and bottom. down side is that the slider controls will be on the viewable part of the movie so you'll leave nice oil streaks when moving around in the movie. hopefully this will be one of the devices authorized to use netflix when ever it comes out.
  16. gentlefury
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    gentlefury iPad Guru

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    We'll have to agree to disagree.
  17. DaveSt
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    DaveSt iPad Junkie

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    Sorry .. I kind of forgot to check back on this thread! Yes, the OS is Android 2.2 Froyo. I have to admit that it is at least very slick to look at. I didn't get enough time to determine how good the OS really is, but it seemed as snappy as my Ipad for the basic things I was doing with it.
  18. Superbike81
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    Superbike81 iPad Addict

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    I think the biggest draw for people right now to the Android tablets is the extra ports, webcams, expandability, and Flash support. I love my iPad, but I would love it even more with that stuff.
  19. madsquabbles
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    madsquabbles iPF Novice

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    yeah, it would be nice to not have to pay $30 extra for every port that comes standard even with the cheap android tablet. just about all the android tabs have USB host included and some even come with mini/micro USB to standard USB adapter. plus the included hdmi out on a lot of them make them nice little home video players. it would be nice to have a remote though.
  20. DaveSt
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    DaveSt iPad Junkie

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    I have to make one correction. The Archos 70 is running Android 2.1 not Froyo. The official statement from Archos is that the 2.2 update will be available by the end of the month.

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