Open Ballot: will you be buying a tablet in 2011?


Happy new year! As we prepare to kick-off a new series of the TuxRadar Podcast, we want your musings for the Open Ballot section. For episode 1 we're asking: will you be buying one of those new-fangled tablet computers (or "media consumption devices") this year? Maybe the shiny videos of Android 3 have whetted your appetite, or perhaps you'd rather have a full-on Linux installation with all the Gnome/KDE bells and whistles. Alternatively, you could be getting tempted by Apple's famed Reality Distortion Field, or you just think that tablets are a silly fad that will go away soon.

Whatever the case, we want to know! Leave your comment here and we'll read out the best/funniest/most rhyming comments in the podcast. And please, for the love of Tux, give yourself a more interesting name than Anonymous Penguin...

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Your comments


I just bought one in November of 2010, so I won't be needing one this year. :)


I will NOT be buying any tablets. I have a laptop and a netbook and between the two all my computing needs are met. Tablets are definitely sexy, but right now it's an unnecessary expense for me. However, I do look forward to the improvements and advancements made in each new iteration of tablets!


So it doesn't replace anything, making it a new addition to the family!

there are other options

If ever I buy something this way it has to be like the smartbook from AlwaysInnovating.
Just a tablet is not enough.


I'm debating on a Samsung Galaxy or an iPad.

I normally hate Apple products, however I buy the Retro Gamer magazine, and a lot of retro remakes are out for the iPad like Spectrum emulators etc.

Tough call....

Active Camouflage

I'm going to buy about 20 and attach them all to webcams, which I will attach to my body and make an active camouflage suit, with the webcams filming the scenery around me and displaying it on the tablets.

That is the only possible use I could have for them.

I just don't know

It's a tough one. I kind of want one, but if I buy one it will inevitably lead to me having to buy even more socks than I already do. I buy about twelve pairs a week and it's increasing. :(

Added to the family?


It will be added to the family to do what exactly?

NO. Of course if I come

NO. Of course if I come acroso one with Ubuntu installed, the I may


I will not be buying a tablet because I have several real computers 2 laptops an android smartphone and no spare money.

yes - notion ink adam

excited about pixel xi screen and new start-up doing something interesting.


No way only like Free Operating systems and companies that respect your Freedom. Apple doesn't.

only if you consider the dual screen acer a tablet.

If the touch screen is better than the troubled windowz 7 touch ui then I will buy one. But the software keyboard has to function well. Touch typing has come a long way. I have yet to use a touch screen that could ever rival a simple keyboard. What is out in the world of linux with a software keyboard? I have an android phone and the touch is ok. I still prefer a slide out keyboard for typing. The ability of having a second screen for viewing and holding like a book to read as a "novel" idea.

It looks all nice and shiny...

but no. Why? I don't see any reason to, but a lot of reasons against buying a tablet. I need a real keyboard to type and I'm perfectly capable of surfing the web comfortably with my Netbook which btw. is probably already more powerful then most upcoming tablets in the next 2-3 years will be. I don't intend to go back to a webbrowsingexperience from 10 years ago(and without a proper way of add-blocking, many websites are a pain to use).

Sometimes I just need a q&d bash-script for a certain purpose and I really don't want to wait till someone get's around to code an app that does something similar(and I really don't have the time to learn another programming language now, not considering all the problems that come from that).

It looks cool, may be nice to use, but it's just not capable of doing what I need it to do.

More Apple-inspired bleating

Do I want/need a tablet? Definitely not.

I can't see any task that can't be achieved with either the cheap netbook or 'droid phone I already have.

No sir, Jobsco will get none of my hard-earned cash for their glorified eBook reader. On the other hand if someone was to do a cheap version of the Dell Inspiron Duo, then I'd be interested. Heck, the DID is cheaper than the iPad and I'd be willing to accept the shorter (?) battery life and increased weight, given that it's a far more capable device than the iPad for what I want. Oh, and the DID will happily dual boot Linux - can't do that with the locked-down iPad. :p

BTW Neil Munro - I too have Meego on my netbook (dual-boots with Ubuntu UNR) and I disagree - it's fine without a net connection. Okay you can't email or web-browse, (but that's common sense), but it's fine to do a bit of word processing etc.

What are they FOR!

No - what are they for, what purpose do they meet?

They are certainly shiny, but they are portable devices that are too big to carry about without a bag.

They need an additional case to protect the lovely shiny screens, when a netbook comes with protection built in, and a keyboard for the the discerning command-line warrior to bash out keyboard shortcuts with.

Perhaps you could put the tablet face down on your lap as a tray so the netbook doesn't wobble?

Shiny toy for birthday = expensive coaster within a month.


But Why?

I just don't see the need for me personally to buy one. I have a decent phone (running Android) which does everything I want and more, plus a netbook (running Mint) for when I need more LCD to look at.

Simples :)


No, in 17 syllables ...

Android pad, pricy,
And with unknown purposes.
But very shiny.

MeeGo or Android yes!

I already own an iPad and use it for web browsing all the time but it's too locked down to use it for anything else. I want to be able to stream movies off my linux NAS, plug in USB mass storage devices, plug in a more open micro usb charger which I have tons of around the house.

Android Honeycomb looked really nice at CES but I also will give MeeGo a shot as it's more linux based with package managers, while Android uses its own Market and java based .apk packages even though they both use the linux kernel.


I do buy tablets, usually for things like vitamins and other health supplements. Oh, you mean computer tablets. Well, I only just bought an HTC Desire Z with Android, and it works great, but I see no use currently for a tablet computer. I love my smartphone running Linux, and my netbook running Linux, at the moment a tablet computer is unnecessary.

I would consider buying one if it had a killer app or OS, based on Linux of course. Maybe a future version of Android or Ubuntu will make a tablet computer the ideal device to compete with the iPad (which seems too limited to be of any real use).

No, right now they're toys.

No, right now they're toys. The big size isn't warranted over something smartphones already do better, and netbooks or laptops with their outdated keyboards are actually useful. I already have a kindle to read books.

I do not like sweet apple apps

I do not like sweet apple apps

I do not like them Steve Job ads
I do not like glass keyboard pads

I would not like typing on a plane
I would not like typing on a train
I would not like typing once and twice
just because iWork won't place nice

I do not like phones that drop calls
I do not like laptops that can't take falls

I would not like it monogrammed
I would not like it manufactured in Japan
I would not like it in pink or blue
I would not like it even if Microsoft sued

I do not like sweet apple apps

I do not need a compass, a bowling game, or a $499 dollar yellow sticky pad
I do not need another fade
I do not need a docking clock, an air-port, or a mobile home
I just want them to make working phone

I do not like to power-book, or grab some air
I do not like closed software
I do not like my music touched or shuffled
I don't like the way Mp3 sounds muffled

No, I do not like sweet apple apps,

No, not on ipod, iphone, or ipad,

No, I'll just wait with my circle of friends
On another Mark Shuttleworth LTS gem

12 Reasons iPad Would Look Great in Your Hands!

1. It's expensive as hell.
2. It already has your name on the back, so we can't legally sell it to anyone but you - FRED! WILMA! OBAMA! GLEN BECK!
3. If you drop it you can always buy another at the same price!
4. It comes with an itune app, where you can continue to purchase tunes.
5. It comes with a apple store app, where you can continue to purchase movies.
6. It comes without accessories, so you can visit our online store and order them.
7. It comes without an extended warranty, which you will want since this is expensive as hell, so you can click on the store app and purchase.
8. It comes with 3G and Wifi, so you can subscribe to ATT's monthly data plan and pay every month while saving paper using your apple credit card and earn apple rewards which you can use to purchase your next ipad.
9. It comes with an irreplaceable battery. When it dies there is no need to replace it. Send us your old ipad when you purchase a new one and for a fee we will make sure it's not put in a landfill. In fact, we will use it to build a new one just for you and resell it as an ipad2 for the same low price of $499.
10. It comes with only apple parts and software. So, if you attempt to remove the cover it voids the warranty and you can ship it to our factory at your expense where we will restore your system for a fee and sell you a refurbished ipad with a new 2 year agreement with att.
11.Ipads are made by Apple to be beautiful. And we know windows products are ugly because they are built by the evil empire by a greedy monopoly called microsoft... its your duty to purchase from us so we can continue the good fight against Bill Vader.
12. Ipad's just work! - Making money - we have an app for that!

Re: I do not like sweet apple apps

Hey Dr. Seuss is alive and well - and reads TuxRadar! :D

That posting gets my nomination for "forum posting of the week" award - it's just class.

One small criticism though, shouldn't "just because iWork won't place nice" be "just because iWork won't play nice"? (And "Steve Job" should be "Steve Jobs" in line 2)

Forgive me

I just got an Ipod touch for Christmas. Sorry that I've joined the other dark side. But it is useful and fits in a shirt pocket easily. Kind of like having a dinky laptop.


Only if it has no Mac or Windows OS and is not x86.

Only If...

I love my Asus Eee 10somethingorother, which cost me £150 on ebay, runs Crunchbang and AuroraOS, rarely gives me problems, and looks quite as flashy as any shackled Apple product. The one disadvantage is that I can't safely put it on a music stand. When it dies I will see what the best available linux / android tablet is at the time...

I just don't see the point

I think that the tablet format has been tried and failed a variety of times due to one major problem; we do not have a practical use for it other than a new gadget to show off.

It is not a replacement for a desktop computer or laptop, however a good netbook is smaller, costs half the price and does a lot more functions. With a netbook you are free to choose from an abundance of Linux distros or even build your own if that is your pleasure.

It may play video, music and display ebooks well but it is too big and costly to replace our day to day portable media devices, this is not an ideal fit in your pocket, unless you wear parachute pants. I think we need a defining use and selling point otherwise the ipad and all the others will die off and go down as an expensive gadget gathering dust in most peoples drawers and cupboards.

Even the some of my more privileged kids who have got their hands on one via wealthy parents are admitting that it seems a bit of a pointless toy, after the initial excitement it is now sitting on their bedside tables gathering dust. I personally don’t see where they fit in, not a PC replacement, netbooks are more cost effective and have more uses. Too big for media devices, I think they will vanish into obscurity within the next couple of years.

Keep up the great work on the show, it truly is a great podcast with entertainment for both the geek and non-geek alike.

ps if this gets read please pronounce my username kev-ee not kee-vee as before.

Tablet response/ love the show

First off, i love the show. As soon as I get my own laptop I'm going to definitely put Linux on it.  This show has sparked my interest in coding and operating systems.  I'm planning on majoring in computer science now.  This played a big role in that.

In regards to a tablet they seem a little awkward to me if you tried to type on it or any thing because it is flat. With a laptop you can adjust the screen but with a tablet you have to try and angle it the right way. Since I haven't actually used one I don't know for sure. It seems like it may be an issue though. Also android on tablets is good and I think that will help Linux spread even more :)

Keep up the good work!

Categorically not

No no no no no
Non Nyet Nine Nde Nee Mah nguh Yelem Lay Ez Nann Mhai Nahin
get the picture?



It's very likely that I buy a table in the next two years if the number of electronic magazines increases. I do imagine myself reading an electronic version of SFX, Wired or Linux Format. And the iPad is a very good device to play old 2D adventures like Broken Sword or Monkey Island, which are my favourite games.



i will wait for a good arm based laptop, from a serious vendor, and maybe an inproved debian/ubuntu/linux mint on arm chips.

One more thing

Please bring back one more thing. The show cannot end properly without it.

Absolutely not

This is the year I buy another laptop. With the increased workloads, I'm finding that 3 screens aren't enough sometimes, so 2 laptops + 2 external screens should fit the bill in terms of work flow while also being nice and quiet.

I already look at computer screens enough ... I don't feel that I *need* to be tethered to one 24/7.

Unlikely, but I'll look

Unlikely, but I'll look again when ones with Meego start showing up. I have been spoiled by the freedom of Linux and don't care to deal with the business models of either Google or Apple's app stores.

I really have no need for

I really have no need for one.

I'll be buying a larger one.

I have to admit that I already own a Dell Streak 5" and love it. However I would like to get a model with a larger screen. Since getting an MID/Tablet I rarely use either my PC or netbook. Android is pretty awesome too and just keeps getting better.

Not for me

I might have to resort to buying a new laptop if only to be able to dual book owing to the inability so far of being able to listen to audio books on an iPod.

My priority is audio books so until that is resolved then any spare cash will be reserved for now to meet that need


The closest I'll get to a tablet is the color Nook i just purchased. Great show fellas. You have a fan in NYC

Depends on the features (and price)

If I ever buy a tablet depends on its features. It should have:
A linux-based OS, perhaps Ubuntu or Android 3.0+
Ethernet socket as well as wifi
Mobile internet (3G)
USB ports
Memory card socket
Good battery life
Screen not too glossy/reflective
Good on-screen keyboard
Ability to plug in a USB keyboard and mouse on the USB ports
HDMI output
AMOLED or similar display

Hell Yeah

I'll be getting an android pad very soon

You must be joking?!

Paracetamol, yes, table PC, no - I already have plenty of 'proper' machines.

Steve Jobs, sheep et. Al can keep their 'tablets', 'apps' and other such nonsense.

yes but................

I travel a lot for work and keep my business up to speed on the road with my Eee running Mint. Have done for a while now but I want to trade to a pad because........
I don't want to have to open the lid! everytime i use my machine.
I want to be freeee with 3G onboard (god these manufacturers are way behind in the business field)
I want the touchscreen like my touchscreen smartphone

Give me the features and a mature Os and you've got my money

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