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General So - is the Prime a capable temporary "laptop replacement"?

Discussion in 'Android Devices' started by vobguy, Apr 13, 2012.

  1. vobguy

    vobguy Well-Known Member
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    I am looking for an android tablet that would eliminate the need for me to take my laptop on short trips of 2-4 days.
    Since my department is short staffed, any time there is an emergency I end up working remotely even if I am technically "on vacation" so that means I have to bring the laptop along.
    I should mention the reason for my question is some of the early reviews I read.

    Also - does the ICS upgrade enhance or hurt the performance as a "laptop replacement"?

    TIA for any feedback. :D
     

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  2. ocnbrze

    ocnbrze DON'T PANIC!!!!!!!!!
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    well it depends on what your are going to do with the prime. if you get the keyboard dock, it makes surfing the web and answering emails easier. it does have basic functions of word, excel and powerpoint with polaris office that comes preinstalled on the device. just to be clear though they are basic functions.

    i use my prime more then i do my laptop. but for me most of the time i'm just on the web, play games, and even read a book. so it will depend on what you are going to use the tablet for.
     
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  3. vobguy

    vobguy Well-Known Member
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    Most of what I would do would be done remotely over a VNC type client to Solaris and Linux servers.

    So I would be using the keyboard dock (and hopefully a mouse) quite a bit. It would be more a window into what I need to access more than anything, along with some browsing the web and email, etc; perhaps heavy duty googling if I run across some obscure technical issue.
     
  4. Shel

    Shel Well-Known Member
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    I can give you my recent experience.

    I go with my family to Dallas every year, to visit my sister and her family.

    I always bring my laptop, charger, etc., but this time I only brought my Transformer Prime, and dock!

    First, MUCH lighter and easier to carry on the plane, and while traveling to and from my destination, being that I won't check my laptop, so I have to carry it.

    It served, I'd say, 90% of my needs. I'm in the process of purchasing a property, and as luck would have it, I was emailed about 40 pages that needed to be printed, signed, scanned and then either faxed or e-mailed back as a PDF file.

    Tried the hotel business center, but their printer wouldn't print legal size docs, and I'm not even sure how to print from my TP.

    Ended up copying the documents to a flash drive, and going to a FedEx business center to have the pages printed out, signed and then scanned.

    However... when I returned home and again needed to do the same thing, even though I had my laptop, I STILL ended up at FedEx! I don't have a printer that can print on legal size paper, and my scanner isn't really suited to scan 40-50 pages, so I guess that even if I had brought my laptop to Dallas, I STILL would've ended up going to FedEx Office!

    Bottom line, there are a few things you may miss, but probably not much, and as you use it more and more, you'll probably figure out work-arounds for those things that you can't do on the TP.
     
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  5. LateNiteMike

    LateNiteMike Well-Known Member
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    Same here. I completely concur with your assessment and I agree with the postings of the other contributors.
    My capable laptop has sat idle as I now use my Prime as my primary go to device. I love to use my Prime and somewhat begrudgingly have to resort to using my laptop for certain things. I do a lot with photos and I have Picasa on my laptop as my primary image viewer and editor. I love it and it does all that I need to do very well. However, I cannot understand, for the life of me,....WHY Picasa is not available on Android ! :thinking::mad:

    I think, and I'm fairly well convinced that our TF Prime is capable and will be able to become our new laptop replacement....as software and firmware upgrades continue to become available in the near future. (HELLO GOOGLE,...I WANT PICASA ON MY PRIME !)
    It seems to me that Google wants Android users to be able to have a full laptop experience using the Android OS, and I would think that the Asus TF Prime is capable of doing just that.
    So, I'm keeping mine and waiting for the developers to provide my device with that capability. As it stands now the Prime (w/KB) is quite close, but not quite 'there' just yet.

    I want to ditch my (MS WinXP) laptop asap, and switch to using my Prime as my primary device along with my secondary device, my android smartphone (Galaxy S).
    I look forward to that day.

    I fully back Google's efforts and I am dedicated to Android.
     
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  6. viber

    viber Android Enthusiast
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    Polaris Office sucks, especially the spreadsheet portion.

    There are just too many hindrances within the app quality and UI experience itself that inhibit the level of content creation you'd expect given the netbook style layout of the Transformer line.

    For very very light duty, and editing existing documents, it works, but not as a full fledged laptop or even net-book alternative.
     
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  7. ocnbrze

    ocnbrze DON'T PANIC!!!!!!!!!
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    yeah i agree about polaris. like i said it is very basic. for creating and editing i would definitely recommend using a computer for that.

    but all of my other needs has been fully satisfied by my prime.
     
  8. sgosnell

    sgosnell Well-Known Member
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    There are various print apps available, most of which use e-printers. I use PrintShare, which will find any available network printer and print to it. You can't print every format, but .pdf and .doc files are well supported. There is also a Brother print app that will find and print almost anything to a Brother printer, but I find the PrintShare will do as well, and also print to other brands. Another option is to save the file to a USB flash drive and plug that into a printer. Most newer printers will print images and .pdf files directly from a USB drive. You can also get a card reader for not much money, and put your microSD card from the Prime into it and use that as a USB flash drive.

    I find that I use my laptop less and less, as Android matures and more apps become available, and I learn more about using the Prime.
     
  9. LateNiteMike

    LateNiteMike Well-Known Member
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    As far as 'Office' type apps,....I suggest you check out KingSoft Office Suite (for Android). Currently at version 4.4.2.

    I have it and have used it a bit and I think it's very worthwhile. Very nice UI.

    I did question (support) by email as to why the test editor didn't have a spell check capability...and I got an email back the very next day with the good news that they will have that feature in the next version (4.5)...and it will be available next week. The app is free,....and as of now even the FULL version is FREE to download from their website.
     
  10. beallpatrick

    beallpatrick Newbie
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    Definitely try it out to see if you can tolerate the browsing experience then. "Heavy-duty Googling" isn't something I'd even remotely consider doing with the Prime. I've used Chrome, Stock, ICS Browser+, Dolphin, Opera Mini/mobile, and not a single one provides a tolerable browsing experience for more than just checking out something occasionally. Painfully slow would be the major problem--and the browsers that run faster tend to be worse at rendering pages.

    My wife and I both tried to replace our laptops with the TFP for basic usage, and to sum up our grand conclusion of this 3-month effort in her words, "This thing isn't for working, it's a toy."

    Beyond basic word processing, Android's productivity suites are practically useless (Not Polaris, Officesuite Pro, QuickOffice, DocstoGo or Kingsoft Office could render my bar graphs or line graphs from Excel in an even remotely-comprehensible manner), and how things produced in these office apps will end up looking when opened in an actual MS Office program is always a mystery.

    And for some reason, text entry (via dock or software keyboard) frequently lags for no apparent reason. Although, in my experience, that lag tends to calm down during extended typing.

    After giving up and dropping money on a new laptop, I still prefer the Prime for some tasks though, and sort of regard it as a portable planner/reader/study tool/smart monitor.

    For instance, it's a great at pdf reading/annotation with software like Repligo. Email, calendars, and planners are great as well. I tend to do mind mapping on it as well, though those apps would be easier to use on a laptop--but I just don't tend to mind map whilst sitting at a laptop-worthy surface. Video-chatting and IM work well, too.
     
  11. ComposersGuilt

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    I'm glad this particular thread exists, because I keep feeling as though I'm missing out one some secret productivity app that will solve 99% of my problems. While I love the TP, I've yet to find a solid app for word processing, which has relegated the tablet to gaming, Facebook, and Netflix. I've started using the TP more and more for reading, though, especially apps that can annotate PDFs.

    I'm writing a dissertation, which means I need an app that can handle footnotes and that has better-than-average formatting capabilities. I see little reason why this doesn't exist; how difficult could it be to make a fully-functional word processing app for a quad-core tablet? If one became available tomorrow, I could put away the <ahem> Macbook that I regularly use (and that is being held together in places with masking tape).
     
  12. Muqtar

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    Hey latenightmike. Thanks for the recommendation. I pulled it down and it is a relatively robust package. I also told my parents to pull it down (my folks have the TFP as well).

    Thanks again!
     

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