Oct 14 AT 9:05 AM Anthony Domanico 84 Comments

Dell chooses Windows 8 over Android for their next round of tablets

Streak-7-featured

Dell Inc.’s founder and CEO Michael Dell has announced that the company is betting the farm on Microsoft’s Windows 8 for its future tablets in hopes of dethroning Apple’s iPad2. Mr. Dell stated that the market for Android devices has not developed as they had hoped.

Android is certainly another opportunity as well, but that market has not developed to the expectations they would have had.Michael DellDell, inc.

Though I think Mr. Dell is correct when it comes to the tablet market, Android is clearly dominating in the mobile arena, having pulled well ahead of iOS and Windows Phone 7/7.5 in recent months. Windows Phone has specifically struggled to gain a strong footing in the market thus far, a trend they are hoping to remedy with the recent WP7.5 “Mango” upgrade for smartphones and the upcoming Windows 8 for tablets.

It’s strange, tho not necessarily unexpected, that Dell is speaking out so loudly against Android. Dell has completely failed to impress with it’s Dell Streak line of tablets and smartphones, though most would agree that Dell’s struggles have been primarily due to their hardware and not a fundamental flaw in Android’s operating system. (The Tegra-2 Dell Streak 7 we played with at CES was atrocious, with an abysmal viewing angle and an overlay to Android that nobody at T-Mobile’s press event seemed to like). If Mr. Dell is looking at sales numbers for Dell’s Android devices alone, it’s easy to see why they might want a change in business strategy.

All joking about Dell aside, I don’t think their new tablet strategy is necessarily a bad one. I have spoken with several friends and colleagues, many of whom own and love their Android smartphones, about what they’re looking for in a tablet. The strong majority of those I spoke with specifically mentioned that they wanted a device that would fully replace their laptops and wanted the comfort of a full-fledged Microsoft Windows operating system to power the device.

I’m curious to hear what you readers think about Android vs. iOS vs. Windows 8 when it comes to tablets.

  1. If you’ve already purchased a tablet, what kind of tablet do you have? Does it meet all of your computing needs?
  2. If you’ve yet to purchase a tablet device, which tablet operating system would you likely prefer? Why?
Drop a note in the comments with your thoughts on these questions and/or the tablet market in general.

Source: v3

Anthony loves all things technology, from hardware to apps and games. You can connect with him via Google+ or Twitter by clicking one of the fancy doo-dads above.

    Most Tweeted This Week

  • Craz

    Dell with Windows? Talk about making a bad device even worse.

    • DELL HATES FRAGMENTATION

      Hidden due to low comment rating. Click here to see.

      • https://plus.google.com/116093795732345180640/posts DroidNexus

        I hate to admit it, but he’s right. The iPad has dominated the tablet arena. However, fragmentation IS going bye-bye. That’s right, they’re going to have ICS be compatible on ALL Android devices. Tablets through phones; all running ICS. SUCK ON THEM APPLES APPLE!

        • http://google.com Dev2009

          I hate to break ti to you but fragmentation was not addressed in ICS. It’s a big problem for us here at Google and we still do not know how to attack this problem successfully.

  • Sal

    I am going to be buying an Asus Transformer 2 (The coming of Kal-El) as my first foray into tablet space. As a hardware aficionado it’s impossible to resist. I hope to install Windows 8 on it once the ARM version is available.

    • http://ArtisticAbode.com BetterWithRoot

      Dual-boot FTW!

    • Wunako

      if its anything like the 1st Transformer you’ll love it trust me

    • John

      I plan on doing the same not only because of the hardware but also because of Android. I think that ICS + TF2 w/keyboard will replace my current netbook for most tasks (I’ll find out if it will serve as a complete replacement for my needs). Nearly 17 hours of compute time, support for external storage devices, slick/fast interface that integrates apps, settings… really looking forward to it.

      The only way I could be swayed from this purchase is if someone produced a similar device with a larger screen (11″ to 12″ would make the device perfect).

  • camokatu

    Nothing wrong with evolving another tablet OS. Competition is the drive of progress, right? I perfect example is webOS, even though it might be under developed one feature I really like is the portrait that does not change view to landscape when you turn tablet 90 degrees. I would really love to see this feature on Android, and Windows if it does not already have it.

    • camokatu

      Should’ve proof read before posting, sorry…

    • WarDrake

      It’s called autorotate and in every other OS other than WebOS you can enable or disable it

  • http://keridel.blogspot.com keridel

    i own the asus transformer and i love it. relly.

    but it doesnt replace m laptop it AUGMENTS it. a windows 8 tablett would be the ideal alternative. i will get one when it comes out.

    i’m hoping asus will do something similar to the transformer with the win 8 eco system.

    even better a dual boot alternative…

  • BiGMERF

    wow that is surprising… im sure it will sell, cause there are a fair amount of windows fanboys out there.. that will run at the opportunity to sync there tablet,phone,pc, etc

    • WarDrake

      you can already do that with android actually…

      Windows 8 seems like a nice OS, but hardly something new (Plus the UI is Terrible…)

      • http://www.anthonydomanico.com Anthony Domanico

        Yeah, the boxiness of Windows 8 (and WP7/7.5) really looks ugly in my opinion.

  • http://www.droidgamers.com ExtremeT

    Dell’s tablets failed because they were fairly poorly made. It had nothing to do with Android which is what Michael Dell is saying it was, “android tablets flopped” as he says. Windows 8 is a mess in my opinion and putting it on Dell’s sub-par tablets isn’t going to help them at all. They need to make better tablets then worry about what OS they should put on there.

    • Marvin

      Dell obviously not reading the papers then.

      HP had the same their tablet was a flop, so they decided to kill it before most people (general public) were aware there was life outside the ipad. Then they dumped them on the market at affordable prices and shock! horror! they sold out.

      Dell are always overpriced, always underpowered and always in bed with M$
      There is no news here.

  • Bunie

    I am an android lover, that being said, Windows is an amazing operating system, and the day i can use my windows programs on my tablet/phone without having to find a terrible remake, that will be amazing.

  • rovex

    Andoid is great, but like iOS or WP7 no match for a full desktop class OS. As long as battery life is ok i dont see a problem

  • ags29

    I am definitely in line for a Windows 8 tablet to replace my Windows 7 laptop with it. I am very happy with Windows and from what I’ve seen of Windows 8, it will not disappoint.

    No matter how much progress Android and iOS tablets make from now until the release of Windows 8 tablets, I will still feel like they are little kids in a big kid Windows game :-)

    • Lucian Armasu

      Why? It’s actually Windows the little kid in the tablet game, because they’ll have very few apps optimized for ARM, and ARM is the only solution if you want decent battery life on your tablet. What’s the point of a 2 hour battery life tablet with x86 programs that aren’t optimized for touch? We’ve seen that before.

      • david
      • pjamies

        Totally agree .. with out specifically architecture’d s/w to take advantage of the tablet processors, battery life will be short lived.

        Lets get 1 thing straight guys … tablets are NOT supposed to replace your desktop or your laptop ! they are a niche product that are to be used for email, browsing the web, and other light work.
        Putting Windows 8 (Metro) on it is kind’a over-kill …. and does anyone know of any apps that actually run on Metro yet ??
        Yes, I run Win7 on my work computer, Apple Lion at home and Android on my phone and Asus Transformer tablet, and they all seem to get along quite happily together .. so don’t start questioning my fan-boy status, as I touch on everything ..
        I have tried the last variant of windows on a tablet and it was just terrible !! I hope that MS gets it right with win8 (Metro) this time .. as they are already behind the 8 ball on tablet OS’s .. they cannot with-stand another failure either on the tablet front or the phone front for that matter … They remind me of another company called RIM (who is also trying to play catch up ..)
        My company will not be going to a win8 tablet, as it really does not bring anything that a Android device cannot bring to the table ..
        We are a Google Corporate house, and can get MS Office through their Web implementation if necessary, as all of our other apps are also web based.
        Our needs are probably different from other users out there .. but as time marches on, many of the apps we use today are becoming web-based, and with that less need for any specific OS.

    • Josh

      A big kids you are ignorant remeber windows mobile lol a big kids game apple and windows steals from open source thats why we make more money for windows then then there own platform research before sa

  • Crickerman

    Dell is just going with the platform they are familiar with. The problem with Android tablets and the iPad are that they feel like inflated versions of Android and iOS, which will change as more and more tablet versions of apps and OS optimizations come out (honeycomb was a good first step). They aren’t designed to replace a desktop or a laptop. Microsoft might be shooting themselves in the foot by deviating from a desktop experience to a touch screen experience. We’ll have to wait and see.

  • JLIX

    I have a Galaxy 10 and I love it. The cpu seems to have a hard time keeping up with typing. But for what i use it for, browsing, apps, games, email, it works great. Would i want to replace it with my laptop? Probably not yet. It’s one thing to type on a phone or tab for fun but for work and getting something done, no.

  • Nate B.

    I can’t deny that W8 looks good. Dell hasn’t seen IC yet.

  • droiddewd

    Having the Asus Transformer is a great tablet. But if someone wants to replace their laptop with this that’s a bit of a stretch, but not completely wrong. It definitely wouldn’t be able to contend with a decent desktop though. I dont know that tablets will ever have more capablities than a desktop but if they do it is something for a more distant future. So going into reviewing tablets with that mindset will definitely cause disappointment.

    I have an old crappy desktop and an a cheap laptop so the Transformer compliments my needs just as good as what they could offer. But, I didnt expect it to replace anything but add to what I already have.

    • Wunako

      Was gonna comment but you actually wrote basically what i wanted to say, i agree with you 100% crappy Desktop and all lol

  • protozeloz

    Dell failure is due to lack of effort not android

  • http://www.technogasms.com Sean Riley

    Did Dell really choose to move away from Android or has Android finally become self-aware enough to simply refuse to boot on Dell’s crappy hardware?

    • http://www.anthonydomanico.com Anthony Domanico

      I’m guessing the latter.

  • triangle

    I haven’t seen any Dell mobile device that is even remotely interesting. It doesn’t seem like much of a loss to me…

  • Jeff R

    Are you kidding Mr. Dell? Windows is so far behind the development curve. Their phone software just plan sucks. What makes you think they will succeed with tablets. They are even losing the PC battle with Apple. Kis the Dell tablet division good bye. Joining HP Web OS in the trash bin!

    • http://keridel.blogspot.com keridel

      they arent losing the pc batlle at all.

      they won it.

      years ago.

      there are more pc’s running windows than any other operating sytem including mobile put together.

    • rovex

      Now THAT is what delusional looks like..

      As Keridel says they won the battle years ago. Apple isnt making much traction on windows because their Macs are hideously expensive in a way even the iPhone cant match. Linux? Nah.. not going anywhere either. They tried it on netbooks and they failed big time, the public isnt interested.

  • Louis

    When it comes to tablet, I don’t really need it to replace my computer because I have a powerful computer at home that I use for my video editing and pictures. So when shopping for tablet, I will mostly be looking for something mostly for entertainment, web browsing and gaming and on the go. I was looking to buy the Sony S tablet the other day cuz of it’s unique design and functionality. Web browsing is really does fast on it. My only draw back was it was kinda heavy. I am sticking with android cuz I think it’s better, only downside not enough apps.

  • jlschulz

    I have to side with Dell on this one. I have a Xoom and I love it for reading news, battery life, surfing the net except that they can’t seem to make a browser that gives me the consistant desktop experience. But does it replace my desktop or laptop, not even close. It hase no capability for multiple screens for true multitasking or business use. There are no serious business apps, just those that emulate office, but not anywhere near full featured. And the lack of a decent email app like outlook or printer support truley points to the fact that Android, while admirable, is still just a cell phone operating system and not a computer platform.

    • WarDrake

      Android HAS printer support, and very good productivity Apps actually, Adobe is soon to release it’s new Fully featured Photoshop suite for android too, ICS comes with full multitasking, Outlook might just e the crappiest email app ever (that’s a matter for debate tho…)

      true, a tablet won’t replace a laptop anytime soon, just like my laptop won’t be replacing my desktop anytime soon, if ever.

      the bigger the case, the better the scalability of the system, which is the great advantage of a desktop, over a laptop, and the great advantage of a laptop over a tablet.

      but a tablet is almsot as productive as a latop already and with the ICS improvements to the OS, it will be right up there.

      • rovex

        Sorry but just no. A laptop is not different to a full PC, the only area they really lack is HD space and graphics, otherwise they are just a mobile PC. A PC is more about the OS and windows on a tablet would out do any mobile OS.

  • http://droidsamurai.blogspot.com DroidSamurai

    The only tablet I have right now is a Nook Color running Honeycomb preview. I owned a Xoom for a moment, but I found it does not justify the price for me — it’s primarily usage model is for entertainment, and I couldn’t convince myself to pay so much for such device.

    Even though I love Android phones, when it comes to tablet, I find it hard to spend the money on a tablet (for the record, I don’t think I need an iPad neither.) The Windows 8 tablet solves one problem — price. Being a part-time full featured laptop, the price of a Win8 tablet would justify its cost. The key is how good its tablet mode is. I downloaded and installed the Win8 preview onto my HP TouchSmart PC, and so far I am actually quite impressed.

  • Seth

    I’m in school and I use an Asus Slate for note taking. My slate is a little bulky and the battery life could be better, but my classrooms have outlets so It’s not a problem. I’m not looking to replace a laptop, I want to replace paper. I need to be able to write formulas and diagrams. Until there are non-windows tablets that have active digitizers and Onenote (or its equivalent) I won’t be interested. Also, 10″ is a stupid size, it’s too big for a pocket, but smaller than a regular piece of paper. If I need to have a bag or backpack to carry it, I’d much prefer it be big enough to be usable.

  • Paul

    I dislike Windows phone & the Very Very large tiles, but for a tablet they might be ok!!!!! For Business & home users who use a laptop more than a tablet a Windows tablet that is finger & battery friendly will do extremely well, it all depends on what you want to do on a large screen mobile device.

  • Paul

    Where are the 15″ tablets with laptop docks, they would be heavier than a 10″ tablet but lighter than a 15″ laptop. 15″ is alot more user friendly for working on than a 10″ screen.

  • Jonathan

    I have the transformer and it is neat…but that is about it. No company in the world understands efficiency in operating systems like Windows and I will trade my transformer in for a windows tablet in a minute. I love Google…had 5 android phones, a tablet, and Google TV…but Microsoft has the experience and drive.

    • Darkseider

      I can’t tell if you’re being sarcastic or if you’re serious. In either case your statement is still hilarious! Windows and efficiency are two words that should NEVER appear in the same sentence.

  • Starship

    if I buy a tablet, I would like it to be a windows 8 tablet. I’m really excited about it. The tablet market needs innovation. Obviously iOS wins the tablet market. We need a new contender to make things interesting.

  • Lulu

    I still can’t find a place in my life for a tablet, be it Apple or Android or MS.

    • http://www.anthonydomanico.com Anthony Domanico

      Do you happen to be related to Justin Shapcott? lol

      • http://www.nexsoftware.net Justin Shapcott

        Hey… What did I do?!??!!?

        • http://www.anthonydomanico.com Anthony Domanico

          It just reminds me of something you would say.

          • http://www.nexsoftware.net Justin Shapcott

            It’s true. I would say that (I have, I’m sure).

  • Darkseider

    LOL! Yeah that will fix it. Let’s put a different OS on our craptastic products! Wonder if Michael Dell ever thought of that?

  • Alex

    Goodbye, Dell. It has been a long and painful death and now I can see it is of your own making.

  • Pau Fexas

    Well. I’m using an HTC Flyer and it is capable of providing most of my basic computing needs especially since I do have the mhl out cable. But at the moment it couldn’t replace a desktop/laptop option. Tablets will never have the raw power of a desktop if only because of power concerns. But that doesn’t mean they won’t be able to become the primary computing device. Most people don’t need a powerhouse for their personal computer as evinced by the success of netbooks. Tablets in some respect are more capable than many netbooks (better graphics, video and Flash capabilities) since even if their CUPs aren’t as powerful the SoC is well balanced.

    Now I hope to upgrade to a tablet that becomes my primary computing device, maybe next year. I don’t really care what OS it has as the issues aren’t exactly OS specific. I need the full internet. Android can currently provide more of the internet than iOS but not all of it (not all pages display correctly and more importantly the local government uses a java virtual machine on their website for tax purposes, sometimes you just need full-fledged java support). The other issue is multiple window support or at least proper task switching. Windows 8 will provide this but if Android comes out with it too then I’d be happy. Also one of the problems is that I want an ARM based tablet but that means limited apps even on Win8 as there is no legacy support and who knows what printer support will be like under those circumstances. Theoretically a dual-boot tablet would be ideal but it’d depend on how many real advantages ARM based Windows 8 provides. But if a good slider tablet based on next gen ARM chips came out I’d probably go for it (by next-gen I mean Krait or A15, not Kal-el with its four A9s and only single channel memory).

  • joe

    Yea, good luck with that Michael.

  • Ed

    I bought a Transformer not expecting a laptop replacement but assuming basic laptop functions would be present. Not so – limited codec availability meant much of my video collection was not viewable, poor integration with my internal network, limited/non-existent printing, and meager storage. After three weeks of trying to accommodate these shortcomings I returned it. If Android does not overcome these limitations in the next year or so my next tablet will be Windows 8.

    • http://www.anthonydomanico.com Anthony Domanico

      Yeah, I think this is what many people out there are thinking. Windows is so compatible with everything because Windows is the biggest OS out there, and companies develop for that platform.

      • Pau

        Yes. But Windows 8 hardware will be fragmented between x86 and ARM. Yes, anything designed to run on the MetroUI is supposed to run on both but legacy apps won’t. And even if built-in Windows drivers support older hardware those drivers normally don’t provide the detailed control that drivers from the manufacturer do. A great example being printers. And how many manufacturers are going to update their software/drivers to be ARM compatible? I’m guessing most manufacturers will just suggest getting the new model which comes with both versions of the drivers out of the box.

        It will also most likely cause some problems among the less tech-savvy consumers who buy a Windows 8 ARM tablet expecting all their old windows programs to run and then find out they won’t.

  • Dr. Fill

    Dell is a one-hit wonder.

    It came into prominence by selling good, cheap PC. Their phones and tables are all sold at a premium. It’s not a coincidence.

  • nipun

    yeah,
    dells stinking hardware made android look like a chicken,no doubt dell will get its butt kicked again with windows

  • Nick

    Yeah agreed, Michale Dells a complete tard. Fair enough switch to windows but their android hardware was basically appealing, and they got updates late and all the rest. Their lack of attention to detail and poor engineering was what killed their android tabs, nothing else.

  • inviolable

    Dude I’m gettin a Samsung

  • Tal

    Windows 8 for my Tablet. Android for my smartphone.

  • fathinashrullah

    For a tablet I prefer an OS that powerful for daily work, and that is Windows. “Work” means coding, debugging, CAD, writing with powerful word processor, analyzing data, etc.

    But for light usage such as reading news, email, maps, and all kind of entertainment, an android smartphone is more than enough for me.

  • Matthew H

    I was seriously looking at tablets as a “2nd computer” for the family a month ago. I looked at the Transformer and the Ipad2. Both had their pluses and minuses, but I eventually went for a 14″ Dell Windows 7 laptop. I did this because I needed full software operation, wanted a keyboard with it, and wanted to pay less than $500. My new laptop was $450, right in the middle of the Transformer ($400) and Ipad2 ($500). It was by far the best value of the three options, it has the fastest CPU of the three, largest screen, better speakers, keyboard, 500GB harddrive (for music and pictures), DVD burner, SD card slot, HDMI and 3 UBSs. The only downside was weight and battery life, but since I don’t hold it while I use it, weight wasn’t a problem, and I am not carrying it much outside the house so I mostly keep it plugged in.
    I would probably get a Win 8 tablet if it delivers what it claims to: real full multi-tasking like a laptop can already do. Plus, I can use MS Office on it (for work, etc) and Photoshop CS (assuming it is not ARM based). It could be the best of both worlds, if Microsoft doesn’t screw it up.
    But I love my Android Phone, and am eargerly waiting the Nexus Prime event week! I can’t wait to see if will be my next superphone.

  • Danielh

    Until someone can come out and explain which Windows 8 they are talking about, its pretty hard to come with an opinion. Are dell talking about taking the X86 Windows 8 version and slap it onto an Intel/AMD based tablet (with abysmal battery and performance as a result)?

    If not, have people lost their minds? You will not, i repeat, you will not be able to run your Windows applications in the ARM version of Windows 8.

    The problem is that Windows 8 really is two distinctly different OSs, one runs Windows and Windows Phone applications, the other only Windows 8 applications. The deliberate confusion from Microsoft sure seems to work wonders.

  • babadush

    It didn’t fail because it was android. It failed because dell sucks

  • 235

    android sucks i guess

  • Eludium-Q36

    sarcasm-on Yeh, good move Dell, what could possibly go wrong with v1.0 of an OS not even fielded yet ?! sarc-off I think MS bought them off, much like they did with Nokia. And what can we expect ? A tablet that’s an inch fat and takes over a minute to boot and 30-secs to come out of hibernation, requiring OS and security patches every week, and comes in last for any given benchmark. fail.

    • 666

      Love it or hate it, Android is not succeeding commercially in the tablet market.

  • charlie88

    Today I was posting a movie to youtube when my browser just disappeared. Then I opened it up and it crashed. A couple of days ago I was giving dance classes and had music on my laptop… Most of the time I use my phone or (call me old-fashioned) a CD. But I have more music on my laptop but wanted to use some new music.

    So I turn on the laptop, the screen is for some reason still black. It’s coming out of standby, but not reacting. Now I see the Windows 7 login. Oh, ok. It’s logging in – but not doing much – let’s wait. No still not working. Turn off, turn on. Ok, working. 10 minutes have passed, of which I should’ve been giving classes. Instead I had to stall and try and get my laptop to work.
    Uhmmmmmm… these are the moments when I realize that I try to avoid everything that has to do with Windows. Horrible system, always lagging. Lots of problems. you can open a program and it’ll lag, you kill the process and open it again and it’ll open just fine. It’ll take 2 seconds to come out of standby and log in. Next time it’s take 20 seconds.

    All of this on my tablet? Hell no. Don’t want no windows kernel on my tablet. Let’s keep it light and simple… Android, WebOs (eventhough it’s dead), iOS (scratch that).

    • user X

      You need more than 1GB of ram in your netbook if your running W7 on it.

  • david

    I’m sorry, but I was wondering about Android and Windows on dual boot (would be nice…), and that begs the question:why can’t we have manufacturer drivers so we can install not only Windows at will, but also any version of Android so as to not depend on manufacturers release cycles?

    Mind you, I don’t understand all this hardware stuff, so I apologize if I’m wishing something unfeasible, technically speaking.

    Why we can’t turn tablets and phones into what PCs are? What is stopping us?

  • elarella

    Dell’s hardware has always been inferior compared to the other tablets and phones coming out. Besides, Dell hadn’t really been cutting edge and innovative, but more as a follower. Reading between the lines, I think good ol’ Mr Dell doesn’t want to pay patent fees for using Android on his products, so the switch to Windows seemed financially sound. Loser!

  • user X

    Eh, let all other markets get one last go at anything OTHER than android, because after this year if your not a major player, your out with the old. And that will leave just android and iOS , granted if amazon or samsung makes an OS, things may change.

    Until then, i would of preferred windows stuff this entire time, but WM7 looks horrifying.
    And android.. well, at least I got to steal some peoples info from the “OPENNESS” and got my other devices free of charge.

    Gooooooooooo Me.

  • Frettfreak

    Well.. i am a huge android fan, and we will see what ICS does for us.. HOWEVER, for a complete solution that you KNOW will run everything that you usually do on your current desktop or laptop… i have to say they made a smart decision.

    I have a touchpad, and have been tossing around getting an android tablet for a while, but haven’t pulled the trigger.

    I have windows 8 on my laptop now and i will say that is is pretty awesome. The new metro UI, and that fact that well, its windows (say what you want, but they OWN the desktop and laptop market, and have a significant stronghold in server space too so they are doing SOMETHING right) it all adds up to some awesomeness. Now, not sure about the whole windows phone… BUT, windows 8 on a tablet will be the device to beat (i would be willing to bet money that it will be number 1 tablet OS within 2 years TOPS!)

  • Eli

    I agree to the fact that Dell itself is at fault for the poor sells of their Streak line because of their own hardware, nothing to do with Android OS. In fact, i dare say that if it werent for Android on it it would have been a total fail. But now here it is with a new venture with Windows 8, and if it is what I am expecting and if it performs as if it were on a pc, than Im sorry to say, but i would definitely go over this that than an Android pad. If windows 8 on a tablet has the ability of doing everything and anything a pc/laptop can do, then my friend, we got ourselves a winner. Until Android can be self-depended than thats the day it will rule the industry.

  • Ron Hyatt

    Here’s the thing–on a 10 inch or larger tablet, I want a full functioning OS. I also want the capability for a real keyboard. That would replace a laptop for me in a snap. But it would have to run windows and all my old apps. I have a 10 inch and a rooted kindle fire. I tend to carry the KF everywhere; the a500 is a read in bed only tablet. Just too large. Can you create a document on a tablet with the onscreen keyboard? Yes. Would you want to? No. As it stands now, the KF is great for killing time in line, appointments, etc. Checking e-mail, remoting in to fix automation problems, etc. The a500? I really wanted an a100, but they sold out. Will it replace a PC? Only if it has the capability of tethering to a REAL keyboard.