Saturday, June 29, 2013

Quick, Cheap, and Easy Computing

Quickest, cheapest, and easiest ways to enter the post PC era...

It gets easier every day to enter the post PC era. Meanwhile PCs are getting more and more difficult to use with Windows 8. 

For example, the Barnes and Noble nook HD+ has recently been updated to be thoroughly capable of most computing tasks. There is still time to get one before Barnes and Noble exits the tablet business.

This 9 inch diagonal tablet has been reduced from $270 to $150 and newly offers a complete computing environment. The opening screen is a model of simplicity. 

A carousel at the top makes it easy to choose tasks or books or music. It becomes easy to connect to radio or recorded television. You can plug the device directly into a TV with a $25 cable. A $30 case offers a keyboard and easy portability and protection.

If you need a camera and GPS, then alternatively a Samsung Galaxy tab 2 7 will add those capabilities at $180 with a 7 inch screen.  Others are out there and more are coming.

If you are new to computers or are ready to throw out your old Windows monster these are a good place to start.

If not quite ready to go all the way to a tablet and if you are still committed to a conventional keyboard, the Chromebook laptop at $250 is another option. This last device is entirely dependent on good WiFi service, but then your telephone is dependent on telephone service.

The cheapest WiFi nowadays is Freedompop, which starts at $18 a month and has no contract requirement.. Freedompop provides you WiFi access wherever you are.

As the price increases for computers, the added benefits offer mostly represent overkill. 

All of these devices require newer but inexpensive wireless printers or access to a PC with a printer.

All of these devices are also free of  the heavy resource and support dependence of older computers which sooner or later bogs down performance and makes heavy demands on your time.  It makes a lot more sense to let the internet cloud do the heavy work.  Documents, apps..., everything is now streaming from internet.

More and more these wondrous, simple and small new devices can do what formerly required a complex device a lot of know-how. For example, even Microsoft Office can be run from the clouds using SkyDrive.  But I just dictate MS Word documents to Documents to Go.

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