As was foretold, we've added advertisements to the forums! If you have questions, or if you encounter any bugs, please visit this thread: https://forums.penny-arcade.com/discussion/240191/forum-advertisement-faq-and-reports-thread/
Options

Lunch Break entertainment device.

AdusAdus Registered User regular
So I have an hour long lunch break at work and we can't use our computers for anything besides business. Needless to say it gets really boring and I'm not much into books. My 6 year old Macbook pro pretty much no longer holds a charge unless it's plugged in and there's literally not a single wall outlet in the break room besides the one the microwaves are plugged into (and shuts off if you try to run them both at once.)

I'd like something for browsing the Internet and watching videos, so I've been kinda looking around at Netbooks on Amazon and such and I'm not entirely sure how good of an investment they are.

Something like this seems okay http://www.amazon.com/Acer-AO722-0473-11-6-Inch-Netbook-Espresso/dp/B005J2E2US/ref=wl_it_dp_o_npd?ie=UTF8&coliid=I1L8MG8UB55K9O&colid=3DJKBUM10JQM6 but 320 dollars still seems a bit pricey for what is essentially a low power laptop. At the same time I don't need something high power for what I want to do. I don't mind paying a bit more for something that is considered solid.

I don't think I'm too into the idea of tablets because I'd like a keyboard, though to be honest I'm a bit far behind on current tech so maybe they're better than I realize. I don't have anything resembling a smartphone and like I said before the laptop I do have is years old. The thing might be okay if I replaced the battery, but I feel like at this point just retiring it is the safer option.

Any recommendations?

Adus on

Posts

  • Options
    mcdermottmcdermott Registered User regular
    Avoid netbooks. They are neither that much cheaper or that much smaller than a low-end laptop.

    Honestly, a tablet sounds perfect for what you want to do, though I have a hard time recommending any. I have an Android tablet, and it's extremely okay for browsing (and great for videos), but...meh. It's on Honeycomb, which just feels entirely half-baked. iPads, on the other hand, have a ton of their own limitations...but not owning one, I'll leave it at that.

    Honestly, depending on the kind of browsing you want to do, a smartphone might just be your best option. I can read the news, hit the forums, and browse a lot of other less-heavy sites just fine on it, and a lot of sites have fairly decent mobile versions. And mine plays videos wonderfully. The main downside is the bump in cellphone bill for the data package, but personally I use it more than enough that I'd have a hard time ever going back.

  • Options
    DehumanizedDehumanized Registered User regular
    This sounds like basically the perfect scenario for a tablet. Assuming you're in the USA... go with an iPad if you want an expensive tablet, go with either a Kindle Fire or a Nook Tablet if you want a cheap one. Between the two cheap options, KF is the better choice if you are hooked into Amazon's services much. The Nook has ever-so-slightly better hardware.

    All of those should be great for media consumption. On their Android app market, Amazon gives away an app every day (which you can pretty easily access with any Android device)... and they give away a lot of good stuff, so with a bit of patience you can accumulate a pretty nice stock of tablet games without paying anything.

  • Options
    AdusAdus Registered User regular
    edited December 2011
    mcdermott wrote:
    Honestly, depending on the kind of browsing you want to do, a smartphone might just be your best option. I can read the news, hit the forums, and browse a lot of other less-heavy sites just fine on it, and a lot of sites have fairly decent mobile versions. And mine plays videos wonderfully. The main downside is the bump in cellphone bill for the data package, but personally I use it more than enough that I'd have a hard time ever going back.

    Yeah that's really kind of the problem. I'm not someone who uses the phone a lot so I don't even really have a cell phone bill. I have one of those cheap ones you put minutes into every so often. That's how little I use it. So I don't really think at the moment setting one up to do my video watching and such is the best solution.

    But I appreciate the responses, since I didn't have the best feelings concerning netbooks.

    I'll probably take a look at tablets. Ipad might be a bit expensive. I've been listening to the Tested podcast lately and they haven't said nice things about the Kindle Fire (namely that the web browsing was very slow).

    Is it the sort of device that say, would allow me to download an mp4 on my computer and put it onto the Kindle and watch it? Or does it only download specific files from authorized places?

    Adus on
  • Options
    Skoal CatSkoal Cat Registered User regular
    mcdermott wrote:
    Avoid netbooks. They are neither that much cheaper or that much smaller than a low-end laptop.
    Dude, what? Netbooks are the bestest.

  • Options
    AbracadanielAbracadaniel Registered User regular
    No, they're not.

    I have both a CR-48 and a Dell Mini 9 collecting dust.

    Battery life sucks, and they get too hot for extended use.

    On the flip side, I loooove my iPad 2.

  • Options
    Skoal CatSkoal Cat Registered User regular
    edited December 2011
    I have an Eee 901 and just bought a new battery, 8 hours of real time use, and it has a physical keyboard. Its a totally different user experience, but netbooks are totally fucking valid pieces of equipment.

    Skoal Cat on
  • Options
    AdusAdus Registered User regular
    See here's the thing, I'm talking about my work lunch break, an hour. I suppose it's possible I might take a plane somewhere in the next few years, but not likely, and not soon enough to buy something in preparation for such an event.

    So if the main problem with netbooks is that they don't hold a good charge or get too hot after hours of continuous use then it's kind of not an issue for me. Actually having a physical keyboard would really be a plus so I can, you know, actually post on a forum or whatever.

  • Options
    syndalissyndalis Getting Classy On the WallRegistered User, Loves Apple Products regular
    Adus wrote:
    See here's the thing, I'm talking about my work lunch break, an hour. I suppose it's possible I might take a plane somewhere in the next few years, but not likely, and not soon enough to buy something in preparation for such an event.

    So if the main problem with netbooks is that they don't hold a good charge or get too hot after hours of continuous use then it's kind of not an issue for me. Actually having a physical keyboard would really be a plus so I can, you know, actually post on a forum or whatever.

    I do about 99% of my posting from my iPad nowadays.

    The physical keyboard versus the on screen one is an invalid argument for pretty much all casual typing*

    *programming still needs a real keyboard for quick access to all the unusual symbols.

    SW-4158-3990-6116
    Let's play Mario Kart or something...
  • Options
    SmokeStacksSmokeStacks Registered User regular
    edited December 2011
    An onscreen keyboard is horrible for typing anything longer than a URL. Anyone who says any different is an iPad owner trying to stave off buyer's remorse.

    A netbook is considerably cheaper and smaller than a low end laptop. You can get an incredibly useful 10" system for $250. If a person was looking to dick around on some webforums, watch some video, or play some older games on their lunchbreak than a netbook is basically the best device for them.

    Not to mention the fact that they would be getting a device with considerably more function than an iPad, but that also costs hundreds of dollars less. Cheaper Android tablets are totally a thing, but "app" selection (God, I remember when people called them "programs") will always be better on a full fledged Windows device compared to an OS that is primarily designed to be run on a phone.

    SmokeStacks on
  • Options
    Skoal CatSkoal Cat Registered User regular
    Adus wrote:
    So if the main problem with netbooks is that they don't hold a good charge or get too hot after hours of continuous use then it's kind of not an issue for me. Actually having a physical keyboard would really be a plus so I can, you know, actually post on a forum or whatever.

    Charge depends on battery size, we just got my cousin a netbook 6 months ago and it has an 11 hour battery. Sure, they sell netbooks with two hours batteries, but good options are there. Also, they don't get "too hot". Anyone who says so has been using a broken netbook.

  • Options
    ParielPariel Registered User regular
    edited December 2011
    Typing on a tablet is horrendous. I hated typing on my Touchpad, and that experience doesn't change much across the range of tablets (granted, the only thing I have spent serious time with is an Ipad 2).

    My brother loves his netbook and brings it everywhere (in a cargo pocket, mainly), you might find the same thing. Personally, I'd suggest a low end notebook ($350 range) as the best bang for you buck.

    Pariel on
  • Options
    Apothe0sisApothe0sis Have you ever questioned the nature of your reality? Registered User regular
    I have a Netbook which is pretty grand. I got rid of Windows 7 Starter and put on Ubuntu and it's way better. Depends on what you're trying to do.

  • Options
    syndalissyndalis Getting Classy On the WallRegistered User, Loves Apple Products regular
    An onscreen keyboard is horrible for typing anything longer than a URL. Anyone who says any different is an iPad owner trying to stave off buyer's remorse.
    Man what?

    There is no buyer's remorse to stave off; it's a fucking incredible device. And writing, long complex stuff on the iPad is perfectly fine. I wouldn't write a novel on it or anything (though I do have a friend who is writing his novel on the iPad), but having a keyboard shouldn't be the deciding factor on a device aimed squarely at the lunch break.

    If budget is your concern, get a Kindle Fire if you are an amazon prime subscriber, a nook tablet if you aren't... and even possibly a gently used iPad 1, which you can probably get for near the price of the Nook.

    SW-4158-3990-6116
    Let's play Mario Kart or something...
  • Options
    ElinElin Registered User regular
    edited December 2011
    I have the Kindle Fire and a netbook. I'd recommend the Fire for what you want honestly, a netbook would do it too, but the Fire is more portable. I don't know why they say the browsing is slow, I've never had an issue with it. The Fire gets you Amazon video, Amazon streaming if you're a Prime subscriber, Netflix, Hulu + if you subscribe to that, Kindle books, MP3's on the cloud, and browsing. I post on Reddit (Reddit is Fun app for the Fire) and on these forums with it, no issue for me but I do have small girly fingers.

    I don't know how much you spend on your cell minutes a month but Virgin Mobile can give you an Android phone with unlimited data and texting and 300 minutes for $35 a month if you wanted to go for the smartphone route with no contract.

    My Asus netbook lasts for about 8 hours of constant web surfing on one charge, I use it to take notes in class mostly. It will play some basic Steam games and pretty much anything on GoG.

    Elin on
    Switch SW-5832-5050-0149
    PSN Hypacia
    Xbox HypaciaMinnow
    Discord Hypacia#0391
  • Options
    EgoEgo Registered User regular
    An onscreen keyboard is horrible for typing anything longer than a URL. Anyone who says any different is an iPad owner trying to stave off buyer's remorse.

    First sentence is bullshit, second sentence is assholery (and btw, I don't own an ipad.) Typing on a capacitive tablet sucks --then you get used to it, and it's fine.

    Adus, have you considered repairing the battery for your macbook pro (or replacing it if you don't want to repair it?) I'd rather fool around on a six year old macbook pro at lunch than on most any brand new netbook.

    Erik
  • Options
    SmokeStacksSmokeStacks Registered User regular
    Typing on a tablet is awesome if you don't mind not having any tactile response, having the keys and your hands cover half of your screen, having to hunch over the thing to see what you are typing, and getting oils from your hands all over your screen.

    Tablets have a place in the world, but I stand by my earlier statement.

  • Options
    EgoEgo Registered User regular
    People here regularly make posts much longer than URLs from their tablets and smartphones. I stand by your earlier statement being bullshit.

    Yes, typing on a tablet isn't as good as typing on a keyboard. There are many advantages to keyboards. If only you'd written something that sensible and inoffensive to start with.

    Erik
  • Options
    AbracadanielAbracadaniel Registered User regular
    So...you...want a tablet that...you don't touch because then it gets dirty?

    Man what.

  • Options
    AdusAdus Registered User regular
    edited December 2011
    Ego wrote:
    Adus, have you considered repairing the battery for your macbook pro (or replacing it if you don't want to repair it?) I'd rather fool around on a six year old macbook pro at lunch than on most any brand new netbook.

    I dunno, it seems kinda expensive for just a battery. With my luck I'd do that then the hard drive would go bad or something else in it would break. The thing's not in the best shape seeing that I got it second hand (albeit for free).

    I don't think I'm considering smart phones. I don't use the phone a lot so I don't want to pay for a monthly plan, and I'd prefer something with a bit larger of a screen.

    I'm still unsure if you can load media onto a Kindle Fire (or Nook) downloaded from another PC? That's kind of a deciding factor. The wi-fi I can access at work is borrowed from a pizza place next door (with permission) but the connection is pretty poor, so while I can load webpages okay, actual videos don't download quickly. I tend to download some videos at home then load them onto a USB stick and borrow a friend's netbook at lunch. It's some Toshiba thing and seems okay. But if the Kindle can do that then it seems like a better deal at only 200 dollars.

    Adus on
  • Options
    EgoEgo Registered User regular
    Repairing a battery is usually quite cheap compared to buying another battery (generally you can just buy a kit of the cells from China, and then follow instructions to replace the ones inside your battery housing with them.) Of course you'd want to look up the instructions first so you could judge how easy it'll be, but I've done it a couple times without issue.

    Can't comment on the kindle or nook, regrettably, as I haven't had a chance to play with them.

    Erik
  • Options
    automaticjimautomaticjim Tampa, FloridaRegistered User regular
    Have you looked into the Mac Book Air? it's small and light. It's perfect for browsing and light gaming. If not maybe a used iPod touch. :rotate:


    See you at PAX Prime!
    Twitter - Automaticjim
    Steam - Outbreak


    If you’re winning, play safe and keep the game clean and simple. If you are losing, take risks and complicate the game.
  • Options
    SmokeStacksSmokeStacks Registered User regular
    Have you looked into the Mac Book Air? it's small and light. It's perfect for browsing and light gaming. If not maybe a used iPod touch. :rotate:

    Maybe the dude is actually a Rockefeller or something, but are you really suggesting he look into a device that has an MSRP of around a thousand dollars that he's only going to use to dick around with for an hour or so on his lunchbreaks?

Sign In or Register to comment.