4.How it is different from a smart phone or a cell phone
Like laptops, tablet computers are designed to be portable. However, they provide a very different computing experience. The most obvious difference is that tablet computers don't have keyboards or touch pads. Instead, the entire screen is touch-sensitive, allowing you to type on a virtual keyboard and use your finger as a mouse pointer. Tablet computers are mostly designed for consumers, and they are optimized for tasks like web browsing, watching videos, reading e-books, watching photos, and playing games. For many people, a "regular" computer like a desktop or laptop is still needed in order to use programs like Microsoft Word or Photoshop. However, the convenience of a tablet computer means that it may be ideal as a second computer. Below are some of the main features that you can expect with a tablet computer.
Tablet computers usually use solid-state drives, which allow the computer to boot up and open programs more quickly. They are also more durable than hard disk drives.
Wi-Fi and 3G/4G: Since they are optimized for Internet use, tablet computers have built-in Wi-Fi. For a monthly fee, you can also purchase a 3G or 4G data plan, allowing you to access the Internet from almost anywhere.
In order to save space, tablet computers have very few ports. If you want to use an external keyboard or other peripherals, they will often use a wireless Bluetooth connection
In comparison, a smart phone is a powerful mobile phone that is designed to run a variety of applications in addition to phone service. They are basically small tablet computers, and they can be used for web browsing, watching videos, reading e-books, playing games and more. Smart phones use touch screens and operating systems similar to those used by tablet computers. Many of them use a virtual keyboard, but others (such as the BlackBerry Curve) have a physical keyboard, which allows the entire screen to be used for display purposes. Internet access is an important feature of smart phones. Generally, you will need to purchase a 3G data plan in addition to normal cell service. Smart phones can also connect to Wi-Fi when it is available, which is usually faster than 3G. The differences between smart phones and a tablet PC are very few, such as larger screen area, extended battery life, higher computing power and memory capacity in tablet PCs.
5.Advantages or disadvantages of tabs over laptops and desktops
- Tablet PCs feature more mobility than traditional notebooks, due to the absence of built-in keyboard. They are also often more lightweight than most notebooks, and consume much less power. Also, handwriting can be much slower than traditional keyboard input when writing lengthy documents and emails. Due to the amount of hand resting directly on the screen, Tablets are also more susceptible to smudges and dirt collection.
- A tablet sits somewhere between the smart phone and laptop in most areas, and flexibility is no exception. In many ways, a tablet can fill the role of a laptop and perform most, if not all, of the same functions. But, the tablet is also more versatile. Most can take photos, or shoot videos in addition to allowing video chat and conferencing. They also work nicely as e-readers (or in some cases the e-reader has evolved into a tablet) for accessing an entire library of books on the go. Some of these things are technically possible, but ridiculous in a practical sense with a notebook.
- A tablet PC is generally more expensive than the mature technology of laptops, although prices are coming down slightly since they were first introduced (and are likely to come down further with the emergence of Apples iPad).
- The "handwriting-to-text" conversion does not always work the way we would like it to. Tablet PCs recognize a trained penmanship easier than the way you may write naturally. Just like speech-to-text systems it requires a trained style of speech to work properly.
- The size may also be a disadvantage. As they are smaller than laptops this clearly means that the screen is smaller, possibly reducing the visibility function that laptops can provide. The keyboards are also smaller which could prove difficult for some people who already struggle with a laptop keyboard.
Tablets are design for efficiency because of the low power requirements of their hardware components. In fact, the battery takes up the majority of the interior of a tablet. In comparison, laptops use more powerful hardware. The battery component of the laptop is a far smaller percentage of the laptops internal components. Thus, even with the higher capacity battery of laptops, they do not run as long as a tablet. Many of the tablets right now can run up to ten hours of web usage before require a recharge. The average laptop would only run for roughly three to four hours with a few systems able to stretch it out to eight hours but that still less than a tablet. This means that tablets can achieve all day usage, which few laptops can achieve.
In order to keep their size and costs down, tablet PCs have had to rely on new solid-state storage memory as a means to store programs and data. While these have the potential for faster access and low power usage, they have one major disadvantage in the amount of files they can store. Most tablets come with configurations that allow between 16 and 64 gigabytes of storage. By comparison, most laptops still use traditional hard drives that hold far much more. Extremely affordable net books still have 160 gigabytes of storage, which allows for ten times the amount of data as the most affordable tablets. This won't always be the case though as some laptops have moved to solid state drives as well and may have as little as 64GB of space.
The software that runs on a laptop or tablet can be vastly different in terms of capabilities. Now if the tablet PC is running Windows 7 such as the HP Slate or ASUS Eee Slate it can theoretically run the same software as a laptop but will likely be slower. This can make it easy to use it as a primary laptop using the same software used in a work environment. The two other major tablet platforms right now are Android and iOS. Both of these require applications specific to their operating systems. There are several programs available for each of these and many more are being developed. The problem is the lack of the input devices and hardware performance limitations mean that some more advanced features supplied by corresponding laptop class programs may have to be dropped in order to fit into the tablet environment.
Tablet as a Stand Alone Computer
This category is describing a situation where a tablet PC would be your only computer system. A laptop is a fully self contained system that one can use fully as a computer system in terms of loading data and programs onto and backing up. Many tablet PCs actually require an additional computer system beyond the tablet for backing up the device. Major disadvantages of tablets over notebook computer in using as a stand-alone computer are:
- Screen size (tabs have usually 7" screen size compared to 14" or more for laptops)
- Processing: tabs have much limited processing capacity, and you can't run applications that require heavy processing.
- Absence of inbuilt keyboard
As it stands, laptops still offer a greater level of flexibility when it comes to mobile computing. They may not have the same level of portability, battery backup time or ease of use of a tablet but there are still a number of issues that tablets need to resolve before they become the main means of mobile computing. The issues as mentioned earlier, include processing power, storage space (also called hard disk capacity), memory capacity, screen size, etc. If you already have a desktop computer, then a tablet PC may be an option if you use it mainly for entertainment and web usage while traveling.