I went on a quick stroll through Best Buy today, and tried a lot of the devices I’ve been reading about for the last couple of months:
- The iPad 2 is impressive if only for its reduced mass and flat back, which led many to claim that it feels totally different to hold compared to its predecessor (The white version is stylish, but I think the black bezel better complements the screen.) But for all other purposes, it’s a tiny update to the original iPad: even better for new users, while us early adopters stay current.
- My first impression of the Motorola Xoom was nothing like that of the many tech reviewers – the hardware was solid, and the UI is at the same time surprisingly powerful and usable, especially for the first version of a totally new UI. Apps intended for smaller phones scale to tablet sizes better than iPhone apps do on the iPad. Holding the tablet in portrait orientation is actually pretty nice – I think most reviewers are just too accustomed to the 4:3 iPad. The biggest surprise, however, was that the Xoom’s browser sucks. It does tabs like a desktop browser, but beyond that, its performance trails far behind any mobile browser created in the last four years. It surprises me that an internet services company – the one behind Chrome, even – lags so far behind on mobile browsers.