x PhoneArena is looking for new authors! To view all available positions, click here.
  • Home
  • News
  • The iPad Air and the alternatives worth considering

The iPad Air and the alternatives worth considering

The iPad Air and the alternatives worth considering
"I gotta have one!" – that's probably the thought bouncing back and forth in the mind of anyone who witnessed the iPad Air announcement. And we cannot blame them. After all, Apple has clearly put quite a lot of effort in designing its newest tablet, thus making it significantly superior to its predecessor in more than one way. The iPad Air is faster, thinner, lighter, and good-looking, so we won't be surprised if we see it selling like hot cakes once it is released.

However, the iPad Air isn't necessarily the best tablet of this size that money can buy. Some might need something more affordable, while others might prefer and Android or a Windows 8 based slate instead. Well, for them we have prepared a list of iPad Air alternatives that anyone should take a look at prior to impulsively adding Apple's slate to their shopping cart. Will any of these tablets end up in your hands instead of the iPad Air? Let us know in the comments!

48 Comments
  • Options
    Close




posted on 22 Oct 2013, 17:00 32

1. avasponge (Posts: 40; Member since: 03 May 2012)


galaxy note 10.1 2014 is the best.

posted on 22 Oct 2013, 17:02 6

3. Tsoliades (Posts: 213; Member since: 22 Dec 2012)


No way, man. Surface Pro 2 is the way to go!

posted on 22 Oct 2013, 17:25 8

7. woodshop20 (Posts: 459; Member since: 14 Sep 2013)


With 6 hours of battery like? No thanks.

posted on 22 Oct 2013, 17:35 5

10. papss (unregistered)


The pro is in another league. Nice try though.

posted on 22 Oct 2013, 19:32 1

27. bucky (Posts: 1494; Member since: 30 Sep 2009)


While I really do love the pro, there is very little preventing me from getting the lenovo twist with i7, ssd, better battery life, ssd and more hdd and still save $100+

posted on 22 Oct 2013, 19:47 1

29. woodshop20 (Posts: 459; Member since: 14 Sep 2013)


Or the Sony vaio duo. That thing has much better battery life.

posted on 22 Oct 2013, 21:23 1

40. Long1 (banned) (Posts: 399; Member since: 18 May 2013)


There are Bay Trial Windows 8 hybrids with better battery than iPad-toys.
Even Haswell i3 .

posted on 22 Oct 2013, 20:20

31. ˇಠ_ಠˇ (Posts: 40; Member since: 29 Aug 2012)


Surface Pro 2! Surface Pro 2! Hear Hear!!!

posted on 22 Oct 2013, 22:55

44. gixxerrider311 (Posts: 25; Member since: 14 Mar 2012)


Definitely a great tablet in it's category, I would find it more suitable to compare it to a convertible laptop (Yoga 11S or HP split X2) as it gives you the best of both worlds, portability with computer like performance.

posted on 22 Oct 2013, 17:02 9

4. Shatter (Posts: 2030; Member since: 29 May 2013)


The X86 Windows 8 tablets are the best.

Windows 8 x86 > Android = Windows RT > IOS

posted on 22 Oct 2013, 17:16 2

6. Berzerk000 (Posts: 4065; Member since: 26 Jun 2011)


Don't agree with the list you got there.

Full sized tablets: Windows 8 > iOS > Android > Windows RT.

iOS and Android will be flipped soon though.

Smaller tablets: Windows 8 > iOS = Android > Windows RT.

As you can tell, I really don't like Windows RT. It's basically Windows 8 without any 3rd party programs outside of the Windows Store, which sucks. Full Windows 8 conquers all. That's just my opinion though.

posted on 22 Oct 2013, 18:43

21. Shatter (Posts: 2030; Member since: 29 May 2013)


I meant productivity wise. The ipad is basically just a blown up ipad.

posted on 22 Oct 2013, 19:32

26. protozeloz (Posts: 5378; Member since: 16 Sep 2010)


But the iPad is an iPad... Isn't it.?

posted on 22 Oct 2013, 21:11

38. Long1 (banned) (Posts: 399; Member since: 18 May 2013)


He meant "blown up iphone". And you know that wise guy.

posted on 22 Oct 2013, 19:34

28. bucky (Posts: 1494; Member since: 30 Sep 2009)


No...you just hate ios. There is nothing you can do with an android tablet that you can't with an iPad...

posted on 22 Oct 2013, 19:51

30. YuLeven (Posts: 49; Member since: 14 May 2013)


How about being able to use two apps at once? That really counts for me (even though it's not every Android device that can). Anyway, my preference lies with x86 Windows for productivity. For fun, both Android and Windows RT did a great job for me as for fun I mean watching videos and that being the case, iPad's 4:3 screen just doesn't cut it. Still, I think that even if its not the best for me, the iPad is a great tablet for many people.

posted on 22 Oct 2013, 20:44

34. bucky (Posts: 1494; Member since: 30 Sep 2009)


2 apps at once? Like which apps?

posted on 22 Oct 2013, 20:58 1

35. YuLeven (Posts: 49; Member since: 14 May 2013)


Every single app on my Galaxy Note III, and most of the core apps as the browser, facebook, video player, gmail, maps, messaging, gallery, office suite, hangouts, s-note and above all: youtube on my GF's old Galaxy Note II (which will be receiving Android 4.3 soon and that will enable every single app, as in the GNote III).

Pal, being able to watch youtube videos and concomitantly browse is a thrill. I really miss that when using an iOs device.

posted on 22 Oct 2013, 20:20

32. Berzerk000 (Posts: 4065; Member since: 26 Jun 2011)


Productivity? What's exactly productive about Android tablets that iOS tablets can't do? Yeah, some Android tablets can use a few apps at once, that's a cool feature, but it's not available on every tablet. USB mass storage is nice and is a really easy way to share files, just drag and drop, it's actually one of the reasons I didn't buy an iPhone 5S, but iOS has alternatives to it (mainly through cloud services).

Microsoft Office is available on Android and iOS, but only for phones, tablet support is expected soon. Aside from that, they both have their own word processors, and in Apple's case the entire iWork suite, which is much more unified than the many different productivity apps in Android.

Yeah, the iPad is just a blown up iPhone (I assume that's what you meant), so what? The Note 10.1 2014 is just a blown up Note 3. The Note 8.0 is just a blown up Note 2. The HTC One Max is just a blown up HTC One. The Lumia 1520 is just a blown up (and more well equipped) Lumia 920. The Lumia 2520 is just a blown up Lumia 1520. Do you get the point?

posted on 22 Oct 2013, 21:08

37. YuLeven (Posts: 49; Member since: 14 May 2013)


Well, I'm no judge to tell that Android is the best for having multi window apps, the fact is that for me having two apps running in a splited screen is really important and that I can only find on Android or Windows.

And well, I said that my productivity preferences lies within Windows x86 tablets, followed by android. But in fact, that's me! And to speak the truth, i'm not quite stuff for comparision, as I am a Japanese teacher.

iWork isn't bad, but it don't really cut for me. Having my dicitonary running side by side with the word processor and being able to just swipe the needed words to get their meaning is fantastic. Not even a dedicated dictionary managed to beat that for me.

That said, I want to tell that I find the iPad to be a great tablet, it's just nor for me. For my profession, Android and Windows did the job better (Android has the best apps for Japanese, Windows has the best system). For fun, having to use bloody iTunes every time I wanted to watch an MP4 video really pissed me off and albeit 4:3 is great for reading, for video the black bars turns into a huge annoyance.

posted on 22 Oct 2013, 21:19

39. Long1 (banned) (Posts: 399; Member since: 18 May 2013)


And what about Wacom Pen?
And what about managing the files inside the device independently.
Everithing we say, you answer "yes, but..."
LOL

posted on 22 Oct 2013, 21:38 1

43. YuLeven (Posts: 49; Member since: 14 May 2013)


Indeed! Wacom pen is another killer feature for my uses.

-

And to give you an example, some of my senior students learn vocabulary the following way: They open a Japanese show (most of them go for anime or dorama) and split the screen with a simple dictionary app or site. Once they hear some unknown word, they search for it in a matter of seconds and keep watching. Quite effective for training both listening and improving one's vocabulary.

No specific learning oriented apps are used and this could be done with a separate dictionary and any media reproducing device. What the tablet does is making this easier and faster. That's what productivity is all about. The same situation will repeat when writing an essay or reading some book.

-

I've read a lot of so called professional reviews before picking my first tablet. All of them said the same: iOS is the best ecosystem, it has the most and best apps. In fact, that was true. But ironically, the apps I needed the most where only to be found in Android. The functions, in Windows. It all comes down to one point: The best tablet is the one you like most, no reviewer on earth can summarize "the best" for every one of us.

So, no one can call the iPad the best tablet just for having tons os games and tablet apps. Nor one can dismiss Windows RT tablets for the lack of them.

posted on 22 Oct 2013, 18:07 4

14. Tommy1960i (Posts: 99; Member since: 11 Oct 2013)


No way. iPad Air and Mini will kick ass in benchmarks. iPad will the best as it is!!!!!!!!!!!!!

posted on 22 Oct 2013, 18:26 1

17. RoyalPayne (banned) (Posts: 458; Member since: 07 Aug 2013)


Let the sales decide.

posted on 22 Oct 2013, 18:44

22. JunitoNH (Posts: 925; Member since: 15 Feb 2012)


If that is the case, then we already know the answer.

posted on 22 Oct 2013, 19:12 1

24. ZeroCide (Posts: 694; Member since: 09 Jan 2013)


Sales dont decide a superior product. Most superior products go unnoticed for the more popular ones.

posted on 22 Oct 2013, 17:01

2. Tsoliades (Posts: 213; Member since: 22 Dec 2012)


Don't get an Asus tablet that's not a Nexus. Horrible I/O coding, and tablet slows down a lot over a short period of time.

posted on 22 Oct 2013, 17:15

5. _Bone_ (Posts: 2132; Member since: 29 Oct 2012)


Too bad the iPads are still not 16:10, I mean the thing plays and records FHD videos all the time, there's really no reason to stick with a 1990s aspect ratio. Otherwise it is the tablet to get, it's a full 100g lighter than the laggy Note 2014, and has more screen real estate than the awesome Nexus 7.

posted on 22 Oct 2013, 18:18

16. JojoGo101 (Posts: 211; Member since: 17 Dec 2012)


I agree with you on the Nexus 7 must don't be dissing the Note 10.1 :P

posted on 22 Oct 2013, 17:26 1

8. woodshop20 (Posts: 459; Member since: 14 Sep 2013)


No more news on the Nexus 10? It'll be an interesting comparison when that comes out.

posted on 22 Oct 2013, 17:27 10

9. 1113douglas (Posts: 192; Member since: 04 Jul 2013)


NOTHING COMES CLOSE TO THE NOTE 10.1!

posted on 22 Oct 2013, 18:09

15. Tommy1960i (Posts: 99; Member since: 11 Oct 2013)


You hate that your favorite company doesn't have an iPad?

posted on 22 Oct 2013, 18:46 4

23. quesoesgrande (Posts: 217; Member since: 03 Aug 2011)


What are you trying to say?

posted on 22 Oct 2013, 17:47

11. runzlord (Posts: 26; Member since: 13 Oct 2013)


Still waiting for that perfect full windows 8 tablet. Like a "yoga 2" without keyboard

posted on 22 Oct 2013, 17:52

12. alltechinside (Posts: 246; Member since: 21 Apr 2013)


IMO, nothing comes close to the iPad Air for $499. The surface pro 2 shouldn't be compared with this device because the cost is nearly doubled ($899) and the pro 2 can do desktop capabilities which could also be compared with a laptop as well.

Android tablets are nice but the tablet apps are nowhere near the level that the iPad apps are. Android OS is top notch, but the apps are missing.

What do you guys think?

posted on 22 Oct 2013, 18:34

19. softfurryanus (banned) (Posts: 232; Member since: 09 Jul 2013)


I've yet to really care about apps that aren't optimized for android tablets on my N10.

posted on 22 Oct 2013, 19:30

25. alltechinside (Posts: 246; Member since: 21 Apr 2013)


Android Tablets works well for people that don't use a lot of third party apps. Plus, the Nexus 10 for $399 is great for the money (although I would wait for a 2013 version).

Still, I prefer the iPad Mini over the iPad air. Only reason is the form factor.

But the Nexus 7 2013 is the best choice for me because at $229, you can't go wrong.

posted on 22 Oct 2013, 20:33 1

33. woodshop20 (Posts: 459; Member since: 14 Sep 2013)


I think you've forgotten about the new Windows 8.1 Atom tablets. Those have far greater computing power than the iPad, not to mention better flexibility.

posted on 22 Oct 2013, 21:34

42. alltechinside (Posts: 246; Member since: 21 Apr 2013)


Good point. They are pretty low cost (even lower than $499) but I don't believe the current atom tablets support 64-bit yet (I could be totally wrong about this) so it wouldn't support 64-bit programs.

But I've heard Windows 8.1 atom tablets (64-bit) are coming next month and they could make a difference in the market.

posted on 22 Oct 2013, 21:29

41. Long1 (banned) (Posts: 399; Member since: 18 May 2013)


There are Bay Trial Windows 8 hybrids with better battery than iPad-toys, and even CHEAPER. They are real PC too- not only toys

posted on 22 Oct 2013, 17:54 1

13. MrsPotatoHead (banned) (Posts: 48; Member since: 18 Aug 2013)


Im sorry, I clicked on this article thinking it was about the iPad Air and its talking about all these other wannabes. These are all imposters, Im in love with the iPad Air in High res glossy black.

posted on 22 Oct 2013, 18:38 3

20. Bootutu (Posts: 189; Member since: 11 Jul 2013)


Get the sh33p dog out please!

posted on 22 Oct 2013, 18:33

18. softfurryanus (banned) (Posts: 232; Member since: 09 Jul 2013)


Lovin' my Nexus 10!

posted on 22 Oct 2013, 21:00 1

36. anleoflippy (Posts: 289; Member since: 03 Jan 2013)


I have to say the iPad Air is really a beautiful device with upgraded stuff.
But then again, I still love my Xperia Tablet Z. Here in Asia, the Tablet Z is already cheaper than the iPad Air.

posted on 22 Oct 2013, 23:36

45. prince34 (Posts: 5; Member since: 25 Feb 2013)


It is not super amoled screen! (Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 2014 edition)

posted on 23 Oct 2013, 00:15 1

46. ArtSim98 (Posts: 2911; Member since: 21 Dec 2012)


Xperia Tablet Z still the thinnest though.

posted on 23 Oct 2013, 02:37

47. taojj (Posts: 33; Member since: 01 Aug 2013)


None of them are 64-Bit so they can't be called as an alternative at all. Hence, there is only Apple Ipad Air and Apple Ipad Mini 2 and everything else is quite below their standard so stop making such foolish comparisons and it would be better if you try to come up with articles that make some sense.

posted on 29 Oct 2013, 23:35

48. imparanoic (Posts: 68; Member since: 15 Oct 2012)


no mentioning of NFC, nexus 10 and xperia tablet has it, also xperia tablet z has ps3 dual shock 3 joypad connectivity as standard, meaning it's gaming tablet and great for kids, also no mentioning of only sony xperia tablet z with im750 mhl (sony) adaptor, you can control the tablet with tv remote while connected to TV, ie, use it as a media player, navigate the tablet, surf the net on your hdtv with leaving your sofa as it's cec compatible

Want to comment? Please login or register.

Latest stories