Anyone left a UMPC for a Tablet PC?

Discussion in 'The Tablet PC Life' started by ezra4no1, Mar 2, 2009.

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  1. insomniac

    insomniac Pen Pal - Newbie

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    I am about to, I have a Samsung Q1 Ultra Premium and although it is powerful enough for what I want I just can't get on with the touch screen. I need to be able to write comfortably on the screen while resting my hand and it just isn't possible.

    If the Q1 was wacom Penabled I would probably keep it but as it is I have just bought a st5112. I have no idea if I will like it but it ticks all the boxes on my 'need' list for uni and plenty of the 'wants' so I'm confident I'll be satisfied.

    So to answer your question I guess the main reason would be the touch technology in the UMPC wasn't compatible with my writing style! :rolleyes:
     
  2. NamelessPlayer

    NamelessPlayer Scribbler - Standard Member Senior Member

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    I've never owned a UMPC, but have followed up on them slightly and even saw some Samsung Q1 Ultras down at the Georgia Aquarium used as small kiosks.

    What put me off about the UMPC concept, as opposed to the Tablet PC concept, is that while UMPCs are supposed to be smaller, most of them-or at least the Q1 Ultras-are not small enough. If the Q1 Ultra is indicative of the size of the typical UMPC, there is absolutely no way I am going to be able to stuff one in my pocket-and, if I can't put it in my pocket, why should I have to put up with small screens and small resolutions like 800x480? (I'm already finding 1024x768 on the TC1100 cramped at times, particularly in portrait orientation!) I'm going to have to carry it in a bag anyway-might as well step up the size!

    The lack of resolution exemplifies just how unoptimized desktop Windows (at least before 7-remember, this was the XP/Vista era) was for touch and pen input. It's still largely a keyboard-and-mouse interface with touch and pen functionality tacked on. It would've helped if the applications all had grab and drag and also had better measures of maximizing the minimal screen space (dynamic zoom, perhaps?), but the vast majority of them don't.

    Another key reason was that most of them used resistive digitizer technology-no love for Wacom, except on the ultra-expensive OQO products. (Aren't they defunct now?) I have plenty of experience with typical resistive digitizers, having been through a few Palm OS and Windows Mobile devices myself, and I don't find them adequate enough for serious writing and drawing. In particular, resistive digitizers don't have pressure sensitivity like Wacom pens do. Furthermore, if the pen input is done with a basic stylus and not a sophisticated Wacom pen, you then have to worry about not touching the screen while you write or draw! (The palm rejection techniques I've seen with Wacom+resistive Tablet PCs all involve just disabling the resistive digitizer entirely as soon as a Wacom pen comes into range.)

    Sure, my HP iPAQ hx4700 was a great deal less powerful than the average UMPC, and has absolutely no chance of running proper desktop Windows. However, Windows Mobile, while probably not having the best UI out there with the likes of the iPhone/iPod touch and Palm Pre around, is designed around pen and touch, and the applications follow accordingly. Furthermore, the hx4700 fits in my pocket, has a VGA screen that remains competitive with the 800x480 UMPCs save for a slight lack of width, and has far superior battery life.

    And now, it's joined by the HP TC1100, which is still nice and light even with the keyboard on, has an excellent 10" 1024x768 screen that must be of the BOE Hydis variety, is a great deal more powerful, and the aforementioned keyboard is touch-typable and just plain well integrated into the overall design. No touch for fingers, but Wacom handles the pen aspect in spades-and, besides, I don't want my palm interfering with pen input anyway. The battery life won't touch that of the hx4700, but the general idea is to do the basic stuff all on the hx4700 and break out the TC1100 if I need to do something more demanding, like viewing a .PDF (which isn't so much processor-intensive as much as the typical .PDF just needs a bigger screen to avoid constantly having to pan and scroll), sketching (I need Wacom and a large screen for that), viewing a Flash site (it's possible to run Flash on the hx4700, but not with smooth results), or playing some older PC games.

    The UMPC, to me, looks like it's trying to bridge the gap between PDA and Tablet PC, only to fulfill both areas in a very half-baked manner. The premium prices sure didn't help.
     
  3. gordoncahill

    gordoncahill Scribbler - Standard Member

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    Well, I managed to find a Fujitsu P1620 at a good price, now that the P1630 is out. It's a cross between a netbook, UMPC and tablet. And it's awesome! The passive screen actually works brillliantly for notetaking. It's less than a kilo, has a high res screen, usable (but smallish) keyboard and great battery life with the extended battery.

    I nearl picked up a TC1100 but I'm very gad I went this way.

    Gordon
     
  4. hydrocyanic

    hydrocyanic Pen Pal - Newbie

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    i look forward to a even smaller tablet (9-10 inch) on my next purchase with hopefully ULV than atom series and accompany it with a desktop.

    while 12" is a good size at times it is a little too big. i am also in favor of the detachable keyboard module set up and hopefully with the option of portrait mode with that keyboard.

    but this is still a good tablet overall.
     
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