What’s the Best Tablet Computer to Take Traveling?

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From seemingly coming out of nowhere, the tablet computer has quickly become an essential item for many people.

Tablet computers are great to take traveling as they’re smaller and lighter than most laptops, and they can act as a virtual guidebook, map, camera and video and music player (meaning you’ll no-longer have to carry around any of those items with you).

As there are so many tablets out on the market these days, I decided to take a look at which one was best for taking traveling.

tablet comparisonMany of the things that make a tablet good for traveling are the same as what make it good for everyday use (such as bug-free software and a wide variety of apps).

When you’re traveling, however, things like build quality and battery life become far more important as charging time may be limited and because you don’t want your tablet falling apart during the first week you’re on the road.

In addition to this, if you intend to take photographs with your tablet (instead of using a digital camera) than it’s worth looking for a tablet with a good quality camera.

So what’s the best travel tablet (in my opinion)? Drumroll please…

The Apple iPad 2
After looking at the Amazon Kindle, Samsung Galaxy (Android), Toshiba Thriva and ASUS Eee Pad Transformer tablets, for me the best overall travel tablet is the Apple iPad 2 (at least until the iPad 3 comes out), and here’s why:

apple ipadThe overall build quality of the iPad is very good, and as you’d expect with any Apply product the aesthetics are lovely and the whole thing is a joy to use.

In addition to this, the battery lasts for around 10 hours (if those 10 hours are spent surfing the web) and the speed of the processor is pretty good (certainly good enough to handle anything you’ll need to do on there).

The iPad 2 also has front and rear-facing cameras – making it easy to take pictures from either side and to have video chats using the FaceTime app.

The real advantage that the iPad has over every other tablet, however, is the sheer amount of travel-related apps available (no other tablet offers more).

Most great new apps are invariably designed primarily for use with Apple products (such as the iPad, iPhone and iTouch) so by buying an iPad you can be sure that you won’t miss out on the hot new apps of the future (of which I’m sure there will be many).

So what are the downsides?

Firstly, although the iPad 2 has two cameras, the picture quality of both of them is relatively poor (0.7 megapixels rear facing, 0.3 megapixels front facing) compared to some other tablets.

ipad 2Secondly, the iPad 2 is one of the most (if not the most) expensive tablets on the market at the moment. Although Apple-ites would tell you that you’re paying for added quality (and I’m sure you are), taking such an expensive item on the road can be risky.

Lastly, the iPad can be a pain to charge when overseas as you need to plug it into a USB port of a computer. Also, if you buy an iPad in the USA you’ll need a special ‘world travel charger kit’ to be able to charge it in Europe.

Learn more and buy

While other tablets may be better than the iPad purely for entertainment (e.g. the Amazon Kindle Fire tablet) or for photographers (e.g. the Toshiba Thrive), the Apple iPad is the best of the lot when you take everything into account.

Related posts:

  1. The Best Apps for Travelers

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