Tablet Wars - Choosing Your Battles is What it Takes to Win the War



By Carl Weiss

Microsoft Surface Tablet
Microsoft Surface Tablet (Photo credit: methodshop.com)
If you are thinking about buying a tablet PC, you should be aware that there are now many variations of the device that was first brought to the world by Apple Computer on April 3, 2010.  It’s hard to believe that in less than three years the tablet PC market has exploded to the point that there are tablets galore being manufactured by everyone from Acer to Vizio.  As a result it is getting more and more difficult to decide which tablet is right for you.

Apple, Google and Now Microsoft?


While Apple did invent the tablet PC, Google quickly followed suit.  In fact, in a CNet interview in October, Google’s executive chairman Eric Schmidt admitted that , "The Android-Apple platform fight is the defining fight in the industry today."  He also went onto intimate that within a year, more than one billion devices were expected to be running on Android.  So when it comes to choosing one platform over the other, it is simply a matter of preference, since both offer millions of apps from which to choose.

The problem is that another mover and shaker, Microsoft, has just entered the fray with their Windows 8 compatible Surface. This has also spawned a whole slew of other hardware vendors from Dell to Samsung creating their version of a Windows 8 compatible Tablet.  Microsoft Surface is their first real foray into the hardware tablet/PC platform arena.

Even though Microsoft is a late comer to the Tablet wars, they could prove to be a player! With Microsoft’s worldwide distribution channels and large installed customer base, they will make inroads quickly. If the sell out of their first manufacturing run is any indication of this product sell ability it will be one to watch. Microsoft's  design is innovative, high tech and offers many features not available on competing models. Plus it runs Microsoft Office, the number one office suite in the business world. Microsoft’s entry is not a cheap knockoff, it’s a real hybrid with high end competing features and it is priced accordingly. Currently the MS Surface is only available in a 10.1 inch model but if you love Microsoft it’s worth a look.

Size Matters


Size Matters (CN)
Size Matters (CN) (Photo credit: bfishadow)
While there are variations on a theme, for the most part tablets are most commonly available in either 7-inch or a 10-inch models.   While size matters, it’s not in the way you would at first think.  While many people deride the 7-inch tablet, Steve Jobs having been chief among them, there is most definitely a time and a place where less is more.  To make matters worse, there are hybrid devices that blur the line between smart phone and tablet. Both Samsung and LG have release smart phone in the 5+ inch size that have all the capabilities of full size tables (and of course they are cell phones too). Not to be out done Apple recently released its new IPad Mini with a 4 inch format.

A report from CNet: "Nearly 60 percent of units shipped this year will be 9-inch screen tablets with the iPad at the top of the list, according to the firm. But the 7-inch tablets are cutting into the iPad's hold on the market -- those shipments account for 32 percent, up from 26 percent last year."

Other than size, seven-inch units are decidedly cheaper.  Google’s Nexus 7 which is one of the best in the business can be had for right around $200, while typical ten-inch tablets retail for $400 - $500.  Besides, seven-inchers are much more portable, which is a huge advantage when carrying around other gear.  Seven-inch models  can also be slipped into a pocket.  Ten-inch tablets are closer to a laptop in size versus a smartphone.  This means that if you want to do a lot of typing, a seven-inch tablet isn’t for you.

How Low Should You Go?


Walmart $4.88 laptop
Walmart $4.88 laptop (Photo credit: zieak)
While size, operating system and speed are three of the variables that many people use to make a final decision on the best tablet to buy, there are always bargain hunters.  With the sheer amount of competition in the marketplace, you would think that prices would start dropping.  To a certain degree you would be right.  But price shouldn’t necessarily be the final arbiter in choosing a tablet.  You still need it to perform the tasks that are near and dear to you.  For example, while I have seen tablets such as the Archos Arnova 9 G3 for as little as $149.95 on Amazon, the question you have to ask yourself is, “How much performance do I need to get out of my tablet?”

A review of the Arnova 9 from PC Advisor states: "The Arnova 9 G3 display has a 1024x768 resolution but as with the iPad 2, it lack crispness. Text is readable in larger fonts but falls foul of pixelation when browsing text-heavy websites. Video playback can also look patchy at times with colors not blending seamlessly. Colors weren't as vibrant as on the best budget screens, such as Samsung's Galaxy Tab 2.  We managed to squeeze only 5 hours of viewing out of the Arnova 9 G3 before the battery gave in. That's not to say you couldn't use it for casual YouTube perusing, but you'll have to do this via the browser as Arnova hasn't installed the Google Play app store and no YouTube app is pre-loaded.”

So if you are looking for a powerhouse, don’t necessarily expect a bargain.  You may find that the bargain tablet you purchased doesn’t have the speed, battery life, resolution or app availability that you desire.  Besides the differential in price between the low and high end of the spectrum is only a few hundred dollars for the most part.  So why split hairs?

Need a Tablet You Can Get Wet?



Deutsch: IFA 2010, Berlin
Deutsch: IFA 2010, Berlin (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Of course, if you are looking to take your tablet on the high seas or into the rainforest then you definitely need to find a tablet that’s up to the task.  AT& T’s Pantech Element is designed to be submerged in up to three feet of water for up to 30 minutes.  While you can’t exactly take it scuba diving, it’s tough enough to take boating or camping.  While most Android tablets come in either a 7 or 10 inch variant, the designers of the element decided to go with an 8-inch screen.  Other than that, it’s a fairly straightforward 16 GB Android Honeycomb tablet that is available for $299.99 with a two-year contract, or $449.99 without.

 Winning the Battle but Losing the War


Remember, choosing the best tablet for your needs is not something you should take lightly.  The last thing you want to do is buy a tablet online based on your research only to find out once it arrives that you absolutely hate it.  So before making a purchase, take the time to go to a retailer that carries the unit in order to hold it in your own two hands and put it through its paces.  If you fail to do this then you might wind up in the unenviable position of winning the battle only to lose the war, in which case you could wind up putting your latest purchase up for resale on EBay or Craigslist. Actually if you wait till after Christmas you may find the tablet of your dreams in the same place for half the money.

If you would like to find more articles like this type in your key phrase in the search box at the top left of this blog. If you found this article useful, share it with your friends, families and co-works. If you have a comment related to this article, leave it in the comment sections below.  If you would like a free copy of our book, "Internet Marketing Tips for the 21st Century", fill out the form below.





Since 1995, Carl Weiss has been helping clients succeed online.  He owns and operates several online marketing businesses, including Working the Web to Win and Jacksonville Video Production. He also co-hosts the weekly radio show, "Working the Web to Win," every Tuesday at 4 p.m. Eastern on BlogTalkRadio.com.


Seven Secrets of Social Media Magnets


anthony earnshaw - seven secret alphabets - abc
anthony earnshaw - seven secret alphabets - abc (Photo credit: uair01)

Listen to internet radio with workingthewebtowin on Blog Talk Radio

By Hector Cisneros


Every year I look back and try to put in words the social media principle I have discovered over the last seven years. I call these principles the seven secrets of social media magnets because using these secrets produces magnetic positive results. In other words, using these principles draws followers to you in a way that is good for them and for you. My secrets don’t use trickery or black hat techniques to game the system. Conversely I pride myself on using universal principles and techniques that provide real value to both the audience and the player alike. So read on and enjoy the seven secrets of social media magnets.

Making Social Media Work for Your Business



Listen to internet radio with workingthewebtowin on Blog Talk Radio

By Carl Weiss

Are you looking to for a cost effective way to grow your business?  Do you want to break the demoralizing cycle of cold-call, sales pitch and call-back, while attracting the attention, respect and recogn
Social Networks Hype Cycle
Social Networks Hype Cycle (Photo credit: fredcavazza)
ition of prospects and clients the world over?

The good news is that accomplishing this task is easier than you might think.  What I’m talking about is using social networking as a business tool.  When it comes to social networking, there are two schools:
1.      Registering with a social network
2.      Using a social network

For the most part, many small business owners fall into the first category.  This means that while they are enrolled in such networks as Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and others, they rarely feed the nets.  Unless you are willing to post to your networks on a daily basis, you will attain little or no advantage for your business from either prospects or clients.  Add to that the fact that if the amount of followers in your account is in the tens or even hundreds, then you are short sheeting yourself when it comes to being able to tap into the power of social networking.  This is due to that fact that if you create a post, only ten percent of your followers are likely to read it and only ten percent of those who read it are likely to act on it.  This means that in order to get into the game you need to create a base of followers in the thousands.  The way you do this is by providing consistent and compelling content.

What Social Networking is Not

Bearing in mind that most social networks are less than five years old, there has been a certain learning curve in order to employ this medium for promotional purposes.  Some online marketers assume
Social Networking
Social Networking (Photo credit: .hj barraza)
the correct way to feed the social nets is to send out ad copy.  This couldn’t be further from the truth. While social media is possibly the world’s most powerful form or word of mouth marketing, the last thing that your online following wants to receive is ad copy.  Face it, Americans are bombarded practically 24/7 with advertisements.  From the moment they wake up to the moment their head hits the pillow at night, they have ads come at them from every direction.  As a result, people start to tune out ads.  So this is not the best way to engage and grow a following online.


What Social Networking Can Be

Social Network - Copertina
Social Network - Copertina (Photo credit: marcomassarotto)
Social networking can be one of the best ways of convincing the masses to do business with you.  For the most part, these tools are some of the most cost effective advertising vehicles known to modern man, since they cost little or even nothing to use.  But the secret to employing this technology successfully is to entice your audience with useful, time saving, or entertaining information that relates to your business.  Rather than hammering away at your prospects with a full frontal sales assault as you would with traditional advertising, by embracing social networking, you can achieve better long term results by offering valuable tips, news, updates and information. You can also embed or link such things as podcasts and videos to your posts which
This tactic can do two things for you:

1.      Demonstrate to the prospect your knowledge of the subject, which is a good way to increase your credibility and decrease a prospects buying hesitation.

2.      Create an atmosphere of mutual interest and trust through which an ongoing rapport can be created and mined.

Get this formula right and not only will you convert more prospects into leads and sales, but you will also sell more to your existing customers and keep them loyal for longer periods.  Plus, consistent social networking can greatly enhance your website's standings in the search engines and you have two powerful reasons to start social networking for business.

If you would like to find more articles like this type in your key phrase in the search box at the top left of this blog. If you found this article useful, share it with your friends, families and co-works. If you have a comment related to this article, leave it in the comment sections below.  If you would like a free copy of our book, "Internet Marketing Tips for the 21st Century", fill out the form below.



Since 1995, Carl Weiss has been helping clients succeed online.  He owns and operates several online marketing businesses, including Working the Web to Win and Jacksonville Video Production. He also co-hosts the weekly radio show, "Working the Web to Win," every Tuesday at 4 p.m. Eastern on BlogTalkRadio.com.
 


Related articles

Why You Should Be Gaga for Google+




By Carl Weiss

English: Google plus one
English: Google plus one (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
It has been called everything from an online ghost town to one of the best social networks ever invented for small businesses.  But there is one thing that neither pundits nor detractors can deny.  That is, Google+ is the only social network in the world directly operated by the world’s most popular search engine.

Social Equity - Businesses Use it, Here’s How to Get Some

Courtesy of  www.nrpa.org

Listen to internet radio with workingthewebtowin on Blog Talk Radio



By Hector Cisneros

Most people know what equity is. For a business it's the net difference between the assets and liabilities a company has. We've also heard of sweat equity, where a person does a portion or all of the work when fixing up their home, business or other project. So then, what is social equity? In the word-of-mouth world, social equity refers to the notion, which people often feel a need to reciprocate for help received. It’s when they believe they were befriended by someone and have the feeling of indebtedness.  It’s a psychological debt that they feel they need to return the favor.  You’ve heard people say “I owe you one,” right?  

Google’s Secret Ranking System - Harder for You, More Profits for Them

Mario 13 / 157,000,000
Mario 13 / 157,000,000 (Photo credit: Quasimondo)

Listen to internet radio with workingthewebtowin on Blog Talk Radio


By Hector Cisneros

Anyone that advertises on the internet today is aware that Google has changed it's search ranking algorithms several times this year. In April many website owners found that they had suddenly lost their page one ranking. Many fell off the first four pages altogether. Google’s Penguin and Panda updates altered search so that you could no longer get page one position with black hat techniques alone. Google announced that they were doing this because they want page listing to be decided based on the value provided by the page’s content, not by gaming the system with technical tricks. Google wants a true popularity contest based on good content.

Their new algorithms make it much harder to use black hat tricks to get on page one. Keyword relevance, content relevance plus timely and consistency are now king. Positive feedback and social media usage now denote "more meaningful value." What this all means to the average business owner is that it’s much harder to get on page one than ever before.

Praise the Borg and Pass the Ammunition


Listen to internet radio with workingthewebtowin on Blog Talk Radio

By Carl Weiss

Alice Krige as the Borg Queen in First Contact
Alice Krige as the Borg Queen in First Contact (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
In a take right out of one of those late night sci-fi movies the race is currently on to determine who is going to conquer the world first: autonomous robots or cybernetically enhanced humans.  If you have been paying any attention to the newsfeeds recently, there have been a number of articles and videos that have clearly demonstrated that a major shift in the way we look at and deal with technology is now under way.

When most people think about robots today, they either get a picture in their heads of the industrial automatons that now assemble things like cars and vacuum cleaners, or they think of mama’s little helper the Roomba.  But what most folks don’t appreciate is that everyone from Google to the Dept. of Defense is on the verge of creating robotic systems that are capable of doing everything from fighting fires to driving on California’s interstates with little or no input or oversight from anyone.