My tablet gift list

November 25, 2012

My friends are very different. Unique individuals with distinct tastes each, it is hard to get them to agree on anything, let alone the type of tablet they want.

So, this shopping season, I am going to take the choice out of their hands and just go buy some of my closest friends tablets that I think will fit their personalities.

There is no shortage of options to choose from.

In 2011, we thought it was “The Year Of The Tablet.” In retrospect, we were probably wrong. 2011, like 2010, was more along the lines of “The Year Of The iPad.”

In 2012, the tablet market has grown exponentially and competitors to Apple’s original slate are in abundance. This makes me happy because it allows me to tailor my tablet shopping to my individual friend’s tastes.

So, here are the tablets that a couple close friends of mine will be getting from me this holiday season.

Ryan – Mobile App Designer

Choice: Fourth-generation iPad with 4G LTE

App designers are a special breed of people. These are the types that care about different kinds of fonts, the dynamic of how art in apps effects the user experience and really, just how a website or a mobile app looks. I have seen designers and programmers (who are not really all that different) get into fist fights over the placement of a certain button. For the designer, it is all about the aesthetics.

As such, Ryan wants an iPad with a Retina Display. He has an iPad 2 right now and it is fine, but the better display on the latest iPad gives him the shivers.

“I will take an iPad over Android mainly because of the app ecosystem vs. the iPad ecosystem … since the form-factors are more predictable,” Ryan said. “It seems like the iOS stuff gets cutting edge apps sooner and they have a larger selection of apps that appeal to my inner design-nerd.”

Jillian – Web Developer

Choice: Kindle Fire HD 8.9-inch

Unlike Ryan, Jill is not really concerned with the design, code or aesthetics of the tablet of her choice in relation to her job. Her primary use of a tablet will be for reading books, watching movies, maybe doing some email and keeping up on the news. Really, a tried and true media tablet.

When it comes to pure media consumption, there is no better tablet for Jill than the Kindle Fire HD 8.9. I decided that she is to get the bigger version of the Fire because it is better on the eyes for video and reading books (though you can control the font size in the Kindle e-reader app). For someone that is not going to be doing a lot of work from tablet, the Fire should be a fine fit.

Zach – Public Relations Pro

Choice: Nexus 7 (32 GB – Wi-Fi + Data)

Zach is a big fan of his iPhone. So, I am going to introduce him to the world of Android with the best of the Nexus devices.

The Nexus 7 is the best of Android. It is smooth and intuitive, has all the apps you might want and comes in a delightful 7-inch form factor that is easy to hold and great to read on. Zach can easily use Twitter and Facebook along with all the RSS feeds he uses to keep track of us tech reporters with the Nexus 7. With the cellular data connection, he can do it from wherever he is. The Nexus 7 is one of my favorite devices and, with luck, maybe I can convince this tried and true iOS fan that Android has something to offer.

So, that is why I will be getting my friends this holiday season. How about you? What tablet best fits your friends’ needs?

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