Linked by Thom Holwerda on Tue 18th Feb 2014 23:10 UTC
Hardware, Embedded Systems

So, convertibles. Laptop/tablet hybrids. I think their popularity started with early Asus Transformers, but since then, they've become a pretty big staple in the device landscape. Since I'm in the market for a replacement for my dreadful ARM Surface RT, I've been looking at this market segment again, and have noted that there's a lot of choice out there.

After the dreadful experience with the Surface RT, I'm steering clear of anything Windows RT-related. An x86-based convertible Windows 8.1 machine, however, still has some major appeal due to its excellent desktop application support that fits in nicely with my existing workstation. The tablet side of Windows 8.1, however, is still woefully underserved, with very few applications, and even those that do exist are of abysmal quality.

As far as hardware goes, the Lenovo Miix 2 10" (not to be confused with the older Miix 2!) has really grabbed by attention. It's supposed to end up at around EUR 400-500, which is acceptable. The Surface 2 Pro is also interesting, but quite expensive - although it does have a far better processor than the 10" Miix 2. There's also an 11" Miix 2 which sports the same processor as the Surface 2 Pro, but 11" seems a bit large in my view.

I've also been looking at Android convertibles, and here I run into a bit of trouble - most of them tend to run outdated versions of Android, and I'm really not looking forward to figuring out which of them have the best AOSP support. Do any of you have any suggestions here? Any models to look for? Experiences with custom, AOSP-like ROMs?

An even bigger question regarding Android on convertibles is just how well Android handles laptop-like computing. Does it do a good job of it, considering where Android comes from? It seems like to me that where Windows has the upper hand on the laptop side of the convertible, Android rules on the tablet side of it. Am I right in thinking this is so?

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Dell Venue Pro 11
by calden on Wed 19th Feb 2014 18:42 UTC
Member since:

I to went through the nightmare that was Windows RT, though the hardware was for a lack of a better word, awesome. I bought the Nokia 2520. If you have to go RT, then that's the model you want. Anyway I returned it for a Dell Venue Pro 11 with keyboard. The keyboard is the model with the extra battery thus increasing the entire unit's productivity time to 15 hours. After some tinkering with the secure boot loader I was able to install Android for Intel. A free download from Intels website. So now I have a dual boot system. The Dell is well made, fast, love the removeable battery, I bought 2 extras. I would highly suggest one, great tablet/laptop.

Edited 2014-02-19 18:45 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE: Dell Venue Pro 11
by Luminair on Wed 19th Feb 2014 19:14 in reply to "Dell Venue Pro 11"
Luminair Member since:

Buying an extra batter for a device with 15 hours of battery life?

All those batteries degrade at about the same rate due to age, rather than use. So by the time you need to replace the first one, they'll all be near-dead. And you'll need to buy a new keyboard then too, because its battery will be near-dead.

Reply Parent Score: 1