Top 10 Best Tablet Alternatives to the Apple iPad

Apple has become quite a trend-setter when it comes to design. First the “iPod” gave birth to a whole new world of portable music players, then the “iPhone” emerged a new generation of mobile phone devices, and recently came the “iPad, which started turning heads towards touchscreen mobile computing (that already existed).

Although it’s almost guaranteed that the Apple iPad will sell well, there are still many complaints about the lack of various features such as multitasking (which might appear later this year), and the lack of flash support, pen input amongst other things.

It happened with the iPhone and it looks set to happen again with the iPad; consumer electronics manufacturers are rushing to bring out their own touch-screen tablet computers, with the latest being the WePad from German company Neofonie. Here, we round-up some of the most likely ‘iPad killers’!

So wait! The iPad isn’t the only game in town. Sure, it might have a fancy-pants interface, but each of the follow ten tablets win the hardware fight, which is just as important to a lot of consumers. As interesting as the iPad is, no matter what Apple wants us to think it’s by no means the first tablet. What better way to share the tablet love than to give you 10 alternatives to the iPad, which could easily be deemed as serious iPad Killers.

So without further ado, check out these ten iPad alternatives to see which suits you best. Some of these offer features the iPad doesn’t have or can deliver what the iPad can but for less money.

1. Archos 9 PC Tablet

Archos 9 PC Tablet

Archos has been a major player in the MID market since it started. The Archos 9 PC Tablet is the company’s largest slate device to date. It also proves that Apple isn’t the only one to out beautiful looking devices. With a price tag starting at $549, the Archos 9 PCTablet it is a great device and looks awesome. It comes with an Intel Atom Z510 1.1 G Hz processor, 1GB on-board RAM, and is available in two models, 80GB and 160GB. The high-resolution 9-inch touchscreen and the two positioned leg-stands make the Archos 9 perfect for media and hands-free viewing without having to purchase additional accessories.

It runs Windows 7, supports full-HD video playback, has a webcam for Skype calls and video conferencing and, unlike some other tablets we could mention (we’re looking at you, Apple), it’s compatible with Flash technology. Usability, however, leaves a lot to be desired when compared to the iPad.

2. Compal Tablet

Compal Tablet

This working prototype was shown off at CES 2010. Made by Compal, the 7-inch Android 2.0 tablet runs on the new, high-powered next-generation Tegra 2 processor NVIDIA announced at CES. With this chip, a device can support 1080p video playback, yet retain startlingly good battery life. NVIDIA says it already has several partners lined up to make Tegra 2-based tablets, so expect more of this type of device in the near near future.

3. Dell Mini 5

Dell Mini 5

The Dell Mini 5 is the smallest tablet on the list with its 5-inch touch screen, but that just adds on to its ease of use. The device comes with a speedy 1GHz Snapdragon processor with WiFi, 3G and bluetooth connectivity. But the feature that really stands out is its ability to make phone calls (It’s like a big iPhone, or a small iPad that makes calls and fits in your pocket). Oh yeah, there’s also a 5MP camera on board.

4. Fusion Garage’s JooJoo

Fusion Garage’s JooJoo

With it’s 12-inch screen and onboard camera, the JooJoo is a worthy iPad competitor. It supports Flash and achieves 1080p video streaming. The Intel Atom / NVIDIA Ion powered tablet has a great interface and more processing power which gives the user an awesome visual experience.

5. Google and HTC Tablet

Google and HTC Tablet

Google is already crossing swords with Apple on the mobile operating front – its Android operating system and Nexus One handset compete directly with the iPhone – so it comes as little surprise that the company is also seeking to build a tablet computer based on the Android platform. Eric Schmidt, Google’s chief executive, said his company had been working with several hardware manufacturers, and hoped to make its Android Marketplace available on other slate-like devices. Google is thought likely to partner with HTC – the company behind the Nexus One – for any tablet computing initiative.

The cited report says the Google Tablet has already been in development for the past 19 months. HTC is a plausible logical choice for the trusted partner as well, given its existing relationship with Google and the Android operating system. Still, with nothing yet official on the books, the Google Tablet is the most speculative entrant on this list for now.

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