Making a HIT. (Your Checklist for a Quality Handheld Internet Tablet)

Updated on 10 June 2018 by

Example products.

Apple iPad. A very high quality large-format device with a class-leading UI and leading applications suite. In the large-format space, there is no competitor to the iPad at the moment.

Huawei S7. Not available yet but from what we’ve seen, a well specified and usable 7″ device. Resistive touschscreen takes a lot away from the user experience however.

Archos 5 Internet tablet. Good value, video-focused tablet. Resistiv touchscreen and no Google applications on the Android-based OS. New models expected from Archos in late summer 2010.

Dell Streak.  One of the best quality Android tablets available today.  5″ with capacative screen, full Google Android build. Can be used as a phone.

SmartDevices SmartQ range. Includes 5″ and 7″ devices but all run a basic open-source Android build, come with ARM11-based processors. Relatively good value if you are not looking for a full, fast web or application experience.

Products expected in Q3/Q4.

We’re waiting for products from HP, Samsung, Archos, ICD, Notion Ink, Viliv, Blackberry, Interpad and others. Information on specs, capability and pricing should feed-through during September 2010 with availability expected in Oct-Nov timeframe.

We track as many products as we can in our database and you can view all of the devices here.

The extras…

Our database contains placeholders for a lot of features. You might want to consider this list if you’re making a final decision…


  • 12v power adapter
  • 3G voice/data modem
  • A-GPS (Internet Assisted)
  • AC Adaptor
  • Accelerometer
  • Ambient light sensor
  • Bump Case
  • Camera Auto-Focus
  • Car Mount
  • Case
  • Compass (Digital)
  • Digital pen
  • Digital TV receiver
  • Docking cable
  • Docking station
  • DVB-T Module pack
  • Extended battery
  • Fingerprint reader
  • FM radio
  • FM transmitter
  • GPS Navigation Kit
  • Hard Case
  • HD Video Accelerator
  • Headphones
  • Headset (headphones/mic)
  • LED Flash
  • Xenon Flash
  • Mic array
  • Microphone
  • Multitouch Touchpad
  • Optical Mouse Pointer
  • Port replicator
  • Proprietary cable
  • Rear Trackpad
  • Scroll/Thumb Wheel
  • Software CD
  • Stand
  • Stereo speakers
  • Stylus
  • VGA adaptor
  • Voice (Cellular) Capability
  • WebCam


  • Compact Flash slot
  • Consumer IR (remote control)
  • Docking connector
  • DVI-out
  • Ethernet 10/100/1000
  • ExpressCard 54/1
  • ExpressCard/34
  • GPS Antenna socket
  • HDMI
  • Headset i/f (Mic+Line)
  • IrDA (infrared data)
  • Line-in
  • Line-out (2.5mm)
  • Line-out / Headphone (3.5mm)
  • Memory Stick slot
  • MIC-in
  • Micro SD slot
  • Micro SDHC slot
  • Micro USB
  • Mini PCI-Express
  • Mini USB 2.0 (client)
  • Mini-SD slot
  • Mini-USB 2.0
  • Mobile SIM-card slot
  • Multi-format card reader
  • PCI-Express Mini (internal)
  • PCMCIA (Cardbus, PC-Card)
  • Proprietary connector
  • RS-MMC Slot
  • SPDIF-out
  • USB1.1
  • USB2.0
  • VGA
  • Video-out (analogue)

Further reading –

Things to Consider when Designing or Buying a Tablet-Style Device

Mobile Computing Buyers Guide

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7 Comments For This Post

  1. Dragos says:

    No mention of Always Innovating’s TouchBook

  2. chippy says:

    ….and many other devices but they’re all in the database.

  3. rabs says:

    Nice checklist.
    Compared to the one I wrote a while ago, we agree on most of the important points.
    I also though the RAM is very important, 256Mo at least (but maybe nobody provides less).

    And for me a thumboard is very appreciated, though it’s specific to my use: ssh and keyboard focused interface. So there is more free space on the screen (no virtual keyboard and less icons/menus). Also because I want a small device…
    Though I don’t have one on my current device, and for what I do most of the time, it’s not that important.

  4. Chippy says:

    Good point on the RAM. 256M would be a minimum, you’re right.

  5. Carla F says:

    Also like to see the ability to make hand written notes and usb slots.

  6. Chuck Daly says:

    HDMI(W/Audio)should be a requirement. Large screen (42″+) HDTVs are the norm in the US, and composite video connectors are becoming more scarce on HDTVs.

    One point I disagree with your list is the exclusion of Flash. looking up sites from local establishments in the US (Cinema, newspapers, restaurants, concert halls, etc) are more likely to require flash to view vital content, limiting one to viewing sparce mobile versions of sites if its even available.

    I agree with everything else, although a 7″-10″ capacitive screen is kinda rich for $300.

  7. chippy says:

    Hi Chuck

    I think we’re in a middle-ground with using these tablets as PVRs/video players at the moment. Few docking stations. Very little content in most cases. HDMI would be nice but then there’s the people with analogue TV’s still (UK still has analogue broadcasts for example.) I think HDMI is an opportunity for someone. E.G. Archos who do a good job of turning their tablets into PVRs.

    As for Flash, I don’t see consumer tablets as really needing 100% qality internet. Flash can degrade performance and where app-stores are available, some of the flash apps would be better as true apps. Flash needs to be an option I think and we’re moving towards that with Android.

    Thanks for the feedback.

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