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Top 10 Tablets You Need To Know By The End Of This Year

Top 10 Tablets You Need To Know By The End Of This Year

I’ve had a tablet for a couple years now and I have to say, they’re pretty nifty devices. But with new technology coming out at such a frenetic pace, it can be hard to keep up with all of the tablets being released by companies these days. Below I’ve compiled a list of tablets you should probably become familiar with, if only because you might want to buy one as a gift for yourself or someone you know this holiday season! Just as a disclaimer, these tablets aren’t in any ranked order as each serves a different need.

10. iPad Air ($399)

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    Although it’s been replaced by the iPad Air 2, last year’s version will still serve all of your needs well enough. It’s equipped with an A7 processor that, while slightly dated, is still packed with more than enough power to run everything you could possibly want to run.

    9. Google Nexus 7 ($129)

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      The Nexus 7 was released in 2012 as Google’s answer to the iPad. I own that version, but since then they’ve released two new iterations. The one linked here is the 2013 Nexus 7, which is equipped with a 1080p screen and a processor that will easily power Android L and any app you could ever want to run, all for an insanely low price.

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      8. iPad Mini 2 ($299)

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        Last year’s iPad Mini, much like its larger counterpart, can be had for a steal now if you can find one. It is comparable to the Nexus 7, but comes equipped with Apple’s operating system and build quality. If you have an iPhone 5S then you know exactly how the Mini 2 performs, as they have the exact same electronic innards.

        7. Microsoft Surface Pro 3 ($999)

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          At nearly a thousand dollars, the Surface Pro 3 is priced more like a laptop than a tablet, and perhaps for good reason. Its main appeal is that it basically transforms into a laptop when you need to do your work, and reverts back into a tablet when you’re looking to consume content. If you want something that is both a jack of all trades and a master of some, this is the device for you.

          6. iPad Mini 3 ($399)

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          10tabs#5

            If you’ve got some extra cash burning a hole in your pocket, you might be interested in the iPad Mini 3 over the iPad Mini 2. The only real difference between the two models is the addition of Touch ID and the ubiquitous gold color option, so only buy it if these are features you are really into.

            5. Amazon Fire HD 6 ($99)

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              You read that right. For a little under one hundred dollars, a brand-spanking-new Amazon tablet can be yours this holiday season. I’m not sure if I would suggest getting this if you already have a large-screened smartphone, but if you have a child or need a separate device for e-reading, this might be the tablet for you.

              4. Google Nexus 9 ($399)

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                Google ended its Nexus 7 line this year and instead chose to release the Nexus 9 as a direct competitor to the iPad Air 2. The 9 is still a great tablet by any measure, and I can vouch for Android L as its been performing pretty well on my old Nexus 7. Just know that it’s not quite as powerful as the competition (the flip side being that the Nexus 9 is cheaper).

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                3. iPad Air 2 ($499)

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                  With the iPad Air 2, you’re basically getting everything you could want in a tablet. Unlike the Mini 3, which was basically the Mini 2 with a fresh coat of gold paint, the Air 2 is an entirely different beast compared to its predecessor. This is mainly due to its new processor, the A8X, which uses three cores and is about as future proof as a mobile processing unit can get. Indeed, if you are an Apple fan and are wondering about how the iPhone 6S might perform next year, the Air 2 might just give you some hints as to what you can expect.

                  2. Samsung Galaxy Tab S ($499)

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                    Priced to compete directly with the iPad Air 2 and Nexus 9, the Tab S is a beast of a device. While its build quality isn’t quite up to the standards of its competitors, and its software is a bit clunkier to use, its got a magical screen (at least if you believe all of the reviews). Plus, you have options, as this tablet comes in both 9- and 11-inch varieties.

                    1. Google Nexus 7 2012 ($149)

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                    10tabs#10

                      Nearly two and a half years after its release, the original Nexus 7 is still a great device if you’re not a power user. I use mine all the time as an e-reader and gaming device, and it even runs the newest Android operating system fairly well. The price listed is a bit misleading; you can get a 32gb model for far less (usually around $80) if you buy a used one. That’s a lot of tablet for a tiny amount of cash! It’s sort of a reminder of how quickly technology improves, as it feels like just yesterday.

                      At the end of the day, most tablets accomplish the same tasks, and if you can find a great deal on any of these I’d snap them up. Happy hunting!

                      Featured photo credit: Tablets/ Martin Votrl via flickr.com

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                      Last Updated on February 15, 2019

                      7 Tools to Help Keep Track of Goals and Habits Effectively

                      7 Tools to Help Keep Track of Goals and Habits Effectively

                      Now that 2011 is well underway and most people have fallen off the bandwagon when it comes to their New Year’s resolutions (myself included), it’s a good time to step back and take an honest look at our habits and the goals that we want to achieve.

                      Something that I have learned over the past few years is that if you track something, be it your eating habits, exercise, writing time, work time, etc. you become aware of the reality of the situation. This is why most diet gurus tell you to track what you eat for a week so you have an awareness of the of how you really eat before you start your diet and exercise regimen.

                      Tracking daily habits and progress towards goals is another way to see reality and create a way for you clearly review what you have accomplished over a set period of time. Tracking helps motivate you too; if I can make a change in my life and do it once a day for a period of time it makes me more apt to keep doing it.

                      So, if you have some goals and habits in mind that need tracked, all you need is a tracking tool. Today we’ll look at 7 different tools to help you keep track of your habits and goals.

                      Joe’s Goals

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                        Joe’s Goals is a web-based tool that allows users to track their habits and goals in an easy to use interface. Users can add as many goals/habits as they want and also check multiple times per day for those “extra productive days”. Something that is unique about Joe’s Goals is the way that you can keep track of negative habits such as eating out, smoking, etc. This can help you visualize the good things that you are doing as well as the negative things that you are doing in your life.

                        Joe’s Goals is free with a subscription version giving you no ads and the “latest version” for $12 a year.

                        Daytum

                          Daytum

                          is an in depth way of counting things that you do during the day and then presenting them to you in many different reports and groups. With Daytum you can add several different items to different custom categories such as work, school, home, etc. to keep track of your habits in each focus area of your life.

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                          Daytum is extremely in depth and there are a ton of settings for users to tweak. There is a free version that is pretty standard, but if you want more features and unlimited items and categories you’ll need Daytum Plus which is $4 a month.

                          Excel or Numbers

                            If you are the spreadsheet number cruncher type and the thought of using someone else’s idea of how you should track your habits turns you off, then creating your own Excel/Numbers/Google spreadsheet is the way to go. Not only do you have pretty much limitless ways to view, enter, and manipulate your goal and habit data, but you have complete control over your stuff and can make it private.

                            What’s nice about spreadsheets is you can create reports and can customize your views in any way you see fit. Also, by using Dropbox, you can keep your tracker sheets anywhere you have a connection.

                            Evernote

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                              I must admit, I am an Evernote junky, mostly because this tool is so ubiquitous. There are several ways you can implement habit/goal tracking with Evernote. You won’t be able to get nifty reports and graphs and such, but you will be able to access your goal tracking anywhere your are, be it iPhone, Android, Mac, PC, or web. With Evernote you pretty much have no excuse for not entering your daily habit and goal information as it is available anywhere.

                              Evernote is free with a premium version available.

                              Access or Bento

                                If you like the idea of creating your own tracker via Excel or Numbers, you may be compelled to get even more creative with database tools like Access for Windows or Bento for Mac. These tools allow you to set up relational databases and even give you the option of setting up custom interfaces to interact with your data. Access is pretty powerful for personal database applications, and using it with other MS products, you can come up with some pretty awesome, in depth analysis and tracking of your habits and goals.

                                Bento is extremely powerful and user friendly. Also with Bento you can get the iPhone and iPad app to keep your data anywhere you go.

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                                You can check out Access and the Office Suite here and Bento here.

                                Analog Bonus: Pen and Paper

                                All these digital tools are pretty nifty and have all sorts of bells and whistles, but there are some people out there that still swear by a notebook and pen. Just like using spreadsheets or personal databases, pen and paper gives you ultimate freedom and control when it comes to your set up. It also doesn’t lock you into anyone else’s idea of just how you should track your habits.

                                Conclusion

                                I can’t necessarily recommend which tool is the best for tracking your personal habits and goals, as all of them have their quirks. What I can do however (yes, it’s a bit of a cop-out) is tell you that the tool to use is whatever works best for you. I personally keep track of my daily habits and personal goals with a combo Evernote for input and then a Google spreadsheet for long-term tracking.

                                What this all comes down to is not how or what tool you use, but finding what you are comfortable with and then getting busy with creating lasting habits and accomplishing short- and long-term goals.

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