tablets

Apple iPad Review

Apple created the market and dominates it with its mature first tablet.

February 26, 2011
Our editors review and recommend products to help you buy the stuff you need. If you make a purchase by clicking one of our links, we may earn a small share of the revenue. Our picks and opinions are independent from any business incentives.

Conclusion

Performance

The iPad is the 800-lb gorilla of the tablet world, despite being one of the newest devices on the block. It is the front-runner for a reason, though: it is the easiest to use, most fully featured tablet and e-reader available, with a clear, bright screen and good battery life. It comes with access to Apples own iTunes store, but support for Amazon, Barnes & Noble and many other online e-book and media stores can be added quickly and easily.

However, it is bigger, bulkier, more awkward to use and has a shorter battery life than dedicated e-book readers such as the Amazon Kindle that use e-ink screens. If all you want is to read e-books, you might be better off with a dedicated device. But if you want to read books, watch videos, listen to music and access the Internet, the choice is down to the iPad or an Android tablet, and the iPad is by far the easier to use and more flexible device, as long as you don’t mind living within Apple’s restrictions.

Screen Performance

We were extremely impressed with the quality of the iPad screen, which produced good contrast ratios between black and white and clean, bright colors. We were less impressed with the reflectance of the screen, though: the top layer is somewhat shiny and reflects more light than we are comfortable with. The screen also does not hold up well outdoors, though: in bright daylight and direct sunlight, the screen becomes pale and difficult to read, so it would not be a good pick for reading books by the pool on a tropical vacation. But the screen looks great indoors and under more moderate lighting.

Our editors review and recommend products to help you buy the stuff you need. If you make a purchase by clicking one of our links, we may earn a small share of the revenue. Our picks and opinions are independent from any business incentives.

Sections

  1. Introduction
  2. Product Tour
  3. Screen
  4. Battery & Controls
  5. eReader
  6. Music & Audio
  7. Movies & Video
  8. Email & Web Browsing
  9. Internet Apps
  10. Amazon Kindle Keyboard Wi-Fi Comparison
  11. Barnes & Noble Nook Color Comparison
  12. Sony Reader Daily Edition Comparison
  13. Conclusion
Our editors review and recommend products to help you buy the stuff you need. If you make a purchase by clicking one of our links, we may earn a small share of the revenue. Our picks and opinions are independent from any business incentives.
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Our editors review and recommend products to help you buy the stuff you need. If you make a purchase by clicking one of our links, we may earn a small share of the revenue. Our picks and opinions are independent from any business incentives.
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