Apple Vs. Everyone Else: The Top 4 iPad Alternatives

Similar to its iPod and iPhone product lines, Apple has found itself ahead of the curve when it comes to the iPad. Say what you want about the iPad hardware and software, but there isn’t much room for debate when it comes to the sales figures. Jobs & Co. sold 300,000 iPads on the first day of release back in April, over three million in the first 80 days, and analysts put 2010 sales close to eight million total units.

For all the Apple haters in the audience, there is light at the end of the tunnel. If you’ve been following Tom’s Tablet Chart, you already know that a slew of other tablets are either already available or in the pipeline for a 2010 or early 2011 release. So which tablets have the best chance of standing up to Apple in the coming months? We’ve picked our four favorite tablets, all of which have one or more striking qualities that will certainly give the iPad a run for its money.

For a rundown of all the tablets we know about that are worth mentioning, check out our comprehensive tablet chart.

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  • sliem
    What about the (estimated) prices?
    How about Archos tablets?
  • dconnors
    sliemWhat about the (estimated) prices?How about Archos tablets?

    Pricing for a few of these tablets is still not available...but honestly, the price range is going to be the same range as the iPad.

    ARCHOS is making some great tablets, but the company and their products lack the clout that Microsoft, HP, and Samsung bring to the table.

  • Luscious
    HP will have a hard time marketing an already-obsolete Atom platform to the educated consumer and enthusiast. I'm hoping they actually go with an N550 or better, but that Broadcom solution has already been proven to be too driver dependent for reliable playback across multiple HD codecs. AMD's Nile platform is much more elegant and works far better, but it would be a tough job squeezing Nile into a sub-10" form-factor. I like Windows 7, especially when it comes to media streaming and remote connect, but not on a puny Z530.
  • Anonymous
    Archos has been around doing these types of devices for a while now. And though i've never owned one, their current lineup looks pretty decent. Maybe it's time you guys started giving them a little respect and included them in these types of lineups.
  • Anonymous
    I own an iPad and the one thing that makes the device much more useful than 99% of the devices I have ever owned is its battery life. All the bells and whistles are worthless on a mobile device if you lose power. None of these reviews mention anything about battery life.
  • Anonymous
    What about the Blackberry PlayBook's battery life? Huh?
    It uses a faster CPU with more RAM and a faster GPU. It is sure to eat up battery life.

    If it doesn't last 12 hours a charge like the iPad does, then it is going to fail.
  • cknobman
    I hate apple and will never own one of their products.

    That being said I think its stupid to have an "iPad alternatives" article covering a bunch of products that technically don't exist (at least to the consumer). All that is covered here is a bunch of pre release and prototypes which means little to nothing for someone actually looking for an iPad alternative today.
  • back_by_demand
    How about just bringing them to the market, letting us buy them, use them and then write our own reviews on them.
  • Anonymous
    These four can not be seen as alternatives, since not a single one of them is for sale. The title is misleading at best. Should have been "Future iPad Alternatives". It is not even guaranteed that any of these devices will survive long enough to hit the market at all.

    So what are the "The Top iPad Alternatives AVAILABLE TODAY"?
  • farrow099
    I waited months hoping SOMEONE would actually bring a legit android tablet to market. They have all been vaporware.

    The only android tablet expected to actually hit the market this year is the samsung galaxy tab. And I don't think that is an accident as samsung seems to produce most of the ipad components as well.

    If anyone is wondering; I own an EVO 4G phone, an iPad, and a win7 x64 desktop.
  • Anonymous
    Although the article is helpful, it does not mean anything. Specs are only part of the equation. Performance is what really counts. A company can throw together the top processor and load it with memory. However, until it is put to the test, one does not know how it will perform. Also remember that the manufacturers can tweak the OS (I am referring to Android here) so performance will vary. Until these tablets are reviewed and released, you cannot say they are better alternatives. Since specs is all we have to go by, I would also put StreamTV Elocity A7 on this list because its specs are very good.
  • invlem
    I like the iphone but as far as I'm concerned tablets are encroaching on netbook/laptop territory, therefore I expect full support of all formats including flash, html5, etc, etc... This is the one reason I'll never own an iPad. Its too expensive to not support these features.
  • Steve911924
    Just my $0.02. I have an 'A-PAD' E900 tablet I bought off Ebay for AU$130. I know this is just a cheap knock off but apart from being stuck with Windows CE (you can get Android ones, too) I found it a great tablet to use in my car (it has USB support for my 3G modem and built in GPS + maps software).

    No apps store but does the job as a car PC or when I'm at a wifi hotspot.
  • bustapr
    on ebay the other day I stumbled upon the epad and apad(ipad clones) pretty cheap. But they had android 2.1 and looked pretty decent, and they were only around 100 bucks(7 inch). Certainly better than $500 ipad.
  • Doom3klr
    Android destroys the Ipad flash support open source by by apple hello Android.
  • elemento911
    You can also check out some pricing (and specs) for tablets at . Since most of these tabs are so new a lot of them don't have specific pricing advertised yet.
  • wangwang
    Well, there are way more latest tablets introduce in Mobile World Congress 2011 which are really having neck to neck features and performance with iPad 2, still the majority are based on Android 3.0 (Honeycomb) OS. Computex Taipei 2011 is the next big event for latest and greatest Tablets showcase. For the meantime, Best Tablet PC Comparison has the most up to date Tablet ranking, pricing and features comparison. Personally think Asus Eee Pad Transformer TF101 is pretty interesting tablet with the $399 (16GB) -$499(32GB) price tag.
  • mattdawson
    I reccomend you check out some pricing, comparisons and best video reviews for tablets at tablet pc comparison.