As the summer grinds on I’m starting to think about trying to save my pennies and find a way to budget for trying to acquire two new tablet devices this fall: an iPad Mini and a Microsoft Surface RT.
As I’ve mentioned in a few recent posts, I think the release of an iPad Mini (or whatever name is given to a smaller iPad) is virtually a lock for later this year or early next year. It looks likely that it will be 7.85 inch sized tablet that will extend the iPad range and perhaps put a dent in any momentum that tablets like Google’s Nexus 7 and the Kindle Fire have attained in the absence of a smaller, less expensive iPad.
I’ve been tempted a few times over the last couple of years to try out a smaller tablet than the iPad – especially when I saw a couple of glowing reviews of the 7 inch Galaxy Tab by mobile tech writers whose work I respect and enjoy. Honestly I just never managed to get round to it – when I had the dollars I didn’t have the time and vice versa.
If we do see an iPad Mini release in the next six months or so, I will almost certainly be a Day 1 buyer for a couple of reasons. Firstly because this is my day job – I want to do my best to keep up with all the latest and greatest the iPad has to offer. I’m also just very interested to see how a smaller, ‘tweener’ sort of tablet would work for me. I feel like the current iPad size will always remain my favorite but I might find good uses for an even more portable tablet as well – especially if app support right out of the gate is as good as most are predicting it will be.
And then there’s the Surface RT. This is the Surface model that is more of an iPad equivalent / potential rival. The Surface Pro is being compared – concept wise and price wise – to ultrabook class PCs.
As long as the Surface RT isn’t priced at a stupidly high level I’m very keen to take a look at one right at release if I can swing it. I’m interested in the Surface for a number of reasons. I think it’s fascinating to see Microsoft really taking a big swing like this in the tablet space, and in the mobile arena. Their concept has borrowed a lot from Apple’s take on the tablet (and of course the idea of doing the hardware and software) but it also has some real originality to it and seems far less of a copycat device than many of the would-be iPad rivals we’ve seen in the 2.5 years since the original iPad launched.
The Surface’s hardware specs and design looked good in the Microsoft announcement event. I really want to see if it looks and feels as good as it came across at that event. And of course I’m interested to see what Windows RT is like and how app support is on this latest Microsoft mobile platform.
So I’ve got my penny-saving work cut out for me, to put it mildly.
How about all of you? Anyone saving up foe either or both of these upcoming / rumored tablets?