Amazon just slashed the price of its $159 Kindle Fire to $129 for Cyber Monday, making it one of the cheapest quality tablets you can buy.
But while that is definitely a deal, a tablet isn't just for Christmas. I recommend the $129 Kindle Fire tablet for a tween or young teen. They're careless enough that you don't want to spend a penny extra on a breakable electronic device for them. Amazon's Freetime lets you control how much time they spend reading versus playing games, and the Amazon Appstore has plenty of great apps.
But for grownups, I have some other suggestions.
For readers, the Barnes & Noble Nook Tablet is currently $159. If you buy with a MasterCard today, you get a $20 gift card towards books, making the effective price only $139. The Nook Tablet offers a superior reading experience to the original Kindle Fire, especially for comics and illustrated children's books. It's also easy to turn a Nook Tablet into a standard Android tablet using the $29.99 N2A card , opening up hundreds of thousands of additional apps.
Love Amazon? You deserve a Kindle Fire HD . Yes, it's $199, but it's better in every way, especially for video, thanks to its higher-resolution, less-reflective screen. If you're addicted to Amazon Prime streaming video or you just prefer to buy, rent and borrow things from Amazon, this should be your new tablet.
Already have an iPad? Lots of people do. The iPad can get Amazon Prime streaming video, so maybe what you really want is a truly great e-book reader like the $119 Amazon Kindle Paperwhite . An e-ink Kindle and a full-sized iPad make great companions, with the iPad offering a wide range of games and entertainment while the Kindle's e-ink screen gives you a much more restful reading experience than LCDs do.
The best small tablet on the market is actually Google's Nexus 7 . The key here is freedom: you can easily download books from both Amazon and Barnes & Noble here without hacking the tablet. It has a much wider range of apps, services and games available, and it's faster than the Kindle Fire HD. It's a little more complicated to use, though, and you don't get the free Amazon Prime streaming video.
You don't need to spend more than $200 to get a great tablet. The $129 Kindle Fire is a great Cyber Monday deal, but don't get too carried away - they'll be selling tablets tomorrow, too.
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27 November 2012