Tablet computers are multiplying like crazy, so this question is coming up a lot more often now. The answer is a cautious “yes, but it depends….”
It depends a little bit on which type of tablet you’re thinking about, but mostly it depends on what you want, or need, to do with it.
There are four main types of tablets: iPad, Android, Windows-RT, and last, but certainly not least, tablets that run the regular, standard version of Windows that you find on the majority of PCs in homes and offices.
The tablets that run standard Windows are really just like laptops, but with the keyboard optional.
Because these run the standard Windows, that means that just about any Windows programs will run on these tablets with no trouble at all. And that means that, with that optional keyboard handy, a tablet that runs standard Windows can indeed be your main computer.
With all of the other three types of tablets, including Windows-RT, it takes more care to be able to answer the question positively.
All of these others have a limited set of apps – that is, programs – that can run on them. Apps are made specifically for each particular type of tablet.
The iPad tablets are Apple products and they will only run apps made specifically for Apple iPads, plus some apps that will also run on iPhones and iPods.
Android tablets are made by many manufacturers, at many performance and price levels – and they will only run apps that are made specifically for Android tablets, plus some that will also run on Android smartphones or even on the Amazon “Kindle Fire” tablets.
Windows-RT is the non-standard Windows version that was designed specifically for tablets. (Think, “RT = ResTricted”.) Tablets that use this operating system can only run apps that are specifically made to run with the reduced functionality of Windows-RT. They expressly cannot run standard Windows programs.
Each type of tablet has thousands of apps available but, of these thousands, only a small percentage are professionally made and supported programs. And of those, most have features that are considerably less powerful or flexible or enabling than their comparable counterparts in the full-sized computer world of Macs and PCs.
For example, while all tablets now have some sort of word processing and spreadsheet programs available, not all of those programs are as fully featured as on your usual desktop Mac or PC. If you’re used to the capabilities of a full-scale word processor, the cut-down features on a tablet version might be frustrating.
The secret to satisfaction for your needs is to look at the tablets and see if one type or another strikes your fancy. Talk to friends and acquaintances who use tablets. See what features they like and, particularly, the features that they don’t like. Take all with a thoughtful grain of salt, of course, but use this info to figure out where to focus for your own needs.
Then be sure to try out the apps that you are most likely to want or need. Note that even apps with the same name on two or more tablets may not have the same features or ways of working from type-to-type. No kidding; try out the important ones before you decide!
Hoping, as always, that this is all quite clear and useful; nevertheless if I can fill in some details or help with anything on your computers, please don’t hesitate to call: Mike Pepper ~ Computer Guy. www.PawlingComputerGuy.com 845-855-5824
Mike Pepper ~ Computer Guy