Monday, December 31, 2012

iPad or Samsung Tablet? Get the iPad

FINAL UPDATE 1-1-2013: Just to let everyone know, Samsung absolutely refuses to resolve this issue with the Galaxy Tab 7.7. In a phone call today with Verizon tech support, their hands are tied because SAMSUNG WILL NOT SUPPORT THE DEVICE. They refuse to acknowledge there is a problem, and made no offer to me to even explore the issue. I am amazed of the arrogance demonstrated by Samsung in this matter. Since I will be switching to an iPad as soon as the one I order comes in, this will be the last update in this situation. Samsung apparently do not stand behind all of their products. 

UPDATE 12-31-2012: My Samsung Galaxy Tab 7.7 replacement arrived, and it immediately started trying to do the same thing my old one was trying to do. It tried and failed to update the Galaxy Tab operating software three times in less than an hour. I immediately called Verizon tech support, who then engaged an individual from Samsung. Neither of the two could help, nor did they understand why the tablet was behaving this way.  Samsung simply washed their hands of the ordeal and said it was a Verizon problem. The bottom line is my post below is even more true now than it was when I originally published it. The only good thing in this whole ordeal has been the helpfulness of the manager of our local Verizon store. It seems to me purchasing s Samsung tablet is a pretty bad idea these days, especially since they can't adequately support them.

The old adage, “You get what you pay for” has haunted me since I chose to purchase a 4G Samsung Galaxy Tab 7.7 instead of an iPad.  I got what I paid for: a device that crashed, poor battery life, and one that simply could not successfully complete a operating system update. Throw in just plain awful tech support from both Verizon and Samsung, and you ultimately get a miserable tablet experience. Verizon is trying to do something. They sent me an empty box to ship the tablet to them, but I have no idea what they are going to do at this point. I have basically been paying for a data plan that I can’t use because I don’t have a device to access it.

In the meantime, I have blown the dust off my first generation iPad and have been using it in place of my Android tablet. Using it has reminded me once again why I should have gotten an iPad  to begin with instead of the Samsung Galaxy Tab 7.7. The iPad has two qualities that beat the Samsung hands down: reliability and a long battery life.

From a reliability perspective, the iPad is formidable.  I have had my first generation iPad since November 201o and have never had a single update issue. In contrast to this, my Galaxy Tab 7.7 failed to update so many times I lost count, and ultimately had to be boxed up and sent to tech support. Also, I have never had the device crash a single time either. On the other hand, my Galaxy Tab, crashed at least once a day, and it would often happen at the most inconvenient time. Getting out my iPad and using it again, reminded me just how reliable that device is.

As far as the battery life goes, the iPad is hard to beat. The battery life for my Galaxy Tab 7.7 has proven to be an issue. With heavy use, I usually had to plug it in twice a day. With the iPad, I only had to plug it in every other day, and sometimes even longer.  The battery just lasts longer with the iPad.

From a tech support perspective, don’t expect a lot of help from Samsung either. Should there be an issue, apparently their answer is simply to send you and empty box to ship back to them. They don’t give you any information regarding what they are going to do once they get the device either. Throw in Verizon ineptitude, and the words “tech support” are misnomers for sure. There just isn’t any. Amazingly though, I have never had a reason to call Apple for tech support for my iPad to begin with. Perhaps making a product that is so reliable to begin with is the best form of tech support.

The old idea that you get what you pay for is true, and it is especially true in tablets. Take a lesson my my tablet misery and go ahead and buy that iPad instead of a cheaper Samsung tablet. You won’t regret paying the extra.

(NOTE: Just so you know, I am not being paid to make this post. It comes from my own experience with both of these devices and the tech support offered by Verizon and Samsung.)

6 comments:

  1. Thank you for your post. I have experimented with different tablets and have returned to the iPad for the reasons you cite above.

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    1. You are most welcome. Very difficult to beat the iPad in these areas.

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  2. I have no experience with the Samsung tablet (I do have a Samsung phone). I do however have both a Nexus 7 and a gen 1 iPad. I had a terrible experience with the iPad update to 5.0. It blew away all but 70 of 215 apps and all of several thousand photographs (all stored in high-res rather than in Apple's stripped low-res format). Even though a "backup" ran prior to the upgrade it was all but useless. Needless to say I was less than impressed. There are probably negative experiences to be had with any given machine. FWIIW, I mainly use the Nexus 7 nowadays.

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    1. My wife has a Samsung phone and loves it. As far as the iPad updates for the 1st generation, I have never had a single issue, which I am sure there are those who would say the same thing about their Samsung tablet. I looked at the Nexus tablets, but are they available with 4G capabilities? I also like the larger iPad screen as well.

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  3. This actually may be Verizon's fault, not Samsung's, if they operate the tablets similar to the phones. All operating system updates, after being released by Google, are typically skinned and fuddled with by the carriers (Verizon) before appearing on the device, which is why most phones still don't have Ice Cream Sandwich a year later. Since this particular update for your tablet is probably coming through Verizon as well, it's probably Verizon's fault, which is why Samsung actually can't do anything for you, as the OS isn't really in their hands any longer.

    If you want an Android tablet, get a Nexus - those updates come directly from Google and always work. I bought a Nexus 7 for my g/f for Xmas; it had to update twice (4.0 -> 4.1 -> 4.2) right out of the box, but runs amazing. It does have cellular connectivity, but not through Verizon, as Verizon futzes with the OS. You can go through AT&T or T-Mobile. The other option is just getting a wifi version and using your phone as a mobile hotspot for your tablet - I do that a lot.

    My first gen iPad is really slow now. I inherited it recently when my dad bought the 3rd gen (the "new" iPad), so I've only read that it was the upgrade to iOS5 that slowed it down. I'm also very preferential to the flexibility provided by Android. Just wish the carriers respected Android enough to leave it alone.

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    1. In this case, my conversations with both Verizon and Samsung indicated that the update was actually created by Samsung. It really doesn't matter to me at this point whose fault it is. Samsung simply washed their hands of the whole affair and refused to do anything. My local Verizon store stepped forward and helped more than any one. They gave me what I paid toward the Galaxy Tab toward the cost of the 32G iPad. Bottom line, Samsung's tech support simply said it was Verizon's fault and would not even consider trying to help make their device work. I will never purchase another Samsung mobile device again, and probably never an Android device either. I received my iPad and it has not crashed a single time. The only thing reliable about the Samsung Galaxy Tab was that it would crash at the most inopportune moment at least once a day. Bottom line is, Verizon tried to help, Samsung did not. I just hope I don't have any issues with my Samsung TVs. Thanks for visiting and commenting.

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