As you may have heard, Apple announced the iPad 2 during a press event in San Francisco yesterday. Reviews so far have been glowing, but Steve Jobs did not hold back on discussing why the company's competitors aren't succeeding in this space. Jobs declared that manufacturers are still designing tablets to work like PCs, when tablets aren't used like regular computers; Apple understands this, which is why they are winning the tablet war. I know many of you are Apple fans, and plenty of you are not, but I've found it very interesting over the years to see the two camps collide, and it makes me wonder — how do we go about deciding which products to buy?
I predominately use Apple products (we are a Mac office here at Sugar HQ), but I've had my share of Microsoft and RIM products as well, and I may as well tell you that I liked the new iPad. But I'm sure you're wondering how it stacks up against its competitors. Check out the spec breakdown of four popular tablets after the jump.
This chart may be focused on the specs (and clearly, those are important), but what really matters when you're buying a tablet is usability. Is the UI easy to grasp? Does it run smoothly? How does it feel in your hands? And while I was definitely impressed with the Xoom after getting a tour at a recent Honeycomb event, there's just no getting around it — the iPad 2 takes the cake in the tablet category. Granted, it's missing a few key ingredients (a camera flash would be nice, so would an SD card reader), I couldn't get over how sleek, smart, and easy it was to use.
Despite what some CEOs may think — women, and people in general, care about more than looks when it comes to their gadgets. I think the reason Apple succeeds in this market is because it's not only focused on design (inside and out), but it's also focused on content. With as many apps as you have at your fingertips, you'd be hard pressed to find a reason you wouldn't use the iPad. Want to read books and magazines? The iPad does that. Want to teach your kids how to spell, get directions, and manage your finances? The iPad can do that. Want to surf the Internet and watch movies? The iPad does that, too. Sure, other tablets have apps that can help you do these things as well, but Apple makes it easy. Plus, the company doesn't pander to one gender or another. Instead, it builds relationships with its customers by being available for every aspect of their lives — work, play, entertainment, and more. All they have to do is tell everyone what its product can do in order to move units. I think that's where the genius comes in. Oh, and they don't announce a product six months before it's available. There's something to be said about the hype machine here.
I'd like to hear your take — how do you go about choosing which gadgets to buy? Is it design, specs, operating system, or just pure habit of getting one brand over another? Leave your comments below and let us know!