Which is Better - iPad or Laptop

If you can't decide, which among iPad or a laptop would be a better choice, this article will help you make up your mind. Here is my take on why a laptop computer is anytime better than the Apple iPad 3 or iPad HD.
There is a problem of plenty today, when it comes to choosing a brand new computer. The confusion is not just because of the range of laptop brands made available in the market, but also because of the different types of computing devices, that have been launched. With devices like the Apple iPad 3 (or just the new iPad as Apple chose to call it) launched in the market, which is a tablet computer, the confusion of the layman consumer has risen even higher.

Which is Better - Apple iPad or a Laptop Computer?

To be honest, I was initially taken in by the hype surrounding the Apple iPad, being touted as a 'Laptop Killer'. However, it quickly died down after I actually got to see and use it. When I saw what the Apple iPad was capable of, I thought that comparing it with a laptop was a far cry!

Don't let the iPad versus laptop reviews fool you into believing that it is the next big thing which will replace laptops as it's in no measure a substitute for a real laptop computer! Here is a head-to-head comparison.

Apple iPad 3
New Apple iPad
High-End Laptop
A High-End Laptop
New Apple iPadA High-End Laptop
Processor
1 GHz Dual Core A5X (With Quad Core GPU)Dual and Quad Core Processors With Multithreading (With Clocking Frequency Greater than 2.4 GHz)
RAM (Working Memory)
1 GBUp to 8 GB
Storage Capacity
16 GB to 64 GB250 GB to more than 500 GB (Expandable)
Diagonal Screen Size (in inches)
9.7 inches Touch Screen10.1 inches to greater than 17 inches LED Screen
Screen Resolution
2048×1536 pixelsGreater than 1920 x 1200 Pixels (Customizable)
Weight
1.44 lb (Wi-Fi) / 1.46 lb (Wi-Fi + 3G)(Approximately) 5 lb to 7 lb
Connectivity
Wi-Fi + 4G LTE, Bluetooth, USB (Using a Dock Connector)Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, USB, Firewire, HDMI, Ethernet
Camera
Front (VGA-quality 0.3 MP, 30 frames per second) / Back Camera (5 MP iSight, 1080p up to 30 FPS)Front Camera (0.75 MP to more than 2 MP)
Optical Drive
NoneBlu-ray Disc Writer / DVD RW
Keyboard
Virtual Keyboard / Apple Wireless or USB Keyboard (Separate Purchase)Traditional Backlit Laptop Keyboard
Battery Life
Up to 10 Hours VideoApproximately 2 Hours to more than 4 Hours
Pros
  • Ultraportable, Lightweight
  • Access to App Store (With 500,000+ Apps)
  • Video Conferencing With Facetime
  • Back Camera (5 MP, HD 1080P Recording)
  • 4G LTE Connectivity
  • 10 Hour Battery Life With Video
  • Quad Core Processors (With High Clocking Frequency)
  • High-Level Multitasking / High Speed Processing
  • Superior Graphic Processing
  • 3D Gaming
  • Large LED Screen
  • Blu-Ray / DVD Read-Write
  • High Storage Capacity
  • Hardware / Features are Upgradable / Customizable
  • Versatile Portable Workstation
Cons
  • Content Loading Through iTunes
  • No Optical Drive
  • No Direct USB Port, No MicroSD Slots
  • Limited Storage (Maximum: 64 GB)
  • Way too Overpriced
  • No Customization or Upgrade in Software Features or Hardware Possible
  • Bulky, Heavy to Carry
  • Comparatively Low Battery Life
  • No Touch Screen

Let's consider the prime features of the new Apple iPad (or the iPad 3). It is a fact that this device has completely revolutionized the tablet computer range of devices, but it falls substantially short of being a laptop killer. With a 1Ghz dual core Apple A5X processor, 1 GB RAM and a maximum of 64 GB storage space, 9.7 inch Multi-Touch screen, battery life offering 10 hours of video and Bluetooth Wi-Fi + 4G LTE connectivity, it's one of the best tablet computers ever launched. No arguments there! With a range of apps running on it, stunning touchscreen response, amazing graphics, combined with the fact that its extremely slim, besides weighing only 607 g, it is indeed a technological marvel. However, it's not designed for serious, heavy duty computing. It is best used for web browsing, video calling, reading and running not-so-demanding software programs, but it is in no way an alternative to laptops, which can do far more! It's great as a computing device for people who need basic computing on the go, but it's not designed for demanding applications.

For people who are used to operating keyboards on laptops, the switch over to a touch screen keyboard can be highly uncomfortable. The device is like a huge Apple iPod Touch, which performs poorly when it comes to multitasking. It has a slow processor (compared to laptop processors) and even the 1 GB RAM may not help its cause. You have to pay separately for a Bluetooth or wireless keyboard and it has no USB or SD card slot to use (though a USB dongle is supplied)! As admitted by Apple, the iPad is a companion device to traditional laptop and desktop computers. When people refer to it as the laptop killer, it cracks me up!

With these features, a Wi-Fi + 4G enabled Apple iPad, with 64 GB storage space will cost you about $829! You can have all these features and more with a netbook or a laptop computer, which costs less than half the price of the Apple iPad!

Compared to an iPad, what more can a laptop offer? To start with, greater processing power in the form of chips with more than 2.5 GHz clocking frequency, more than 4 GB of RAM, multithreading capacity, a Blu-ray reader and writer, stereo speakers, high resolution LED display, USB, Firewire, Bluetooth, Wi-Fi connectivity and copious hard drive storage space. Put in $50 more in the iPad price and you can buy a Dell XPS 15 laptop, with a 2.4 GHz processor, 500 GB hard drive and a 15.6 inch screen, with tons of useful features, which outclass the iPad or any other tablet computer.

Do I have to say anything more? Some of the best laptop and netbook computers provide high processing speed, multitasking ability, comfort of usage and comparable battery life! I hope you realize that making a choice between iPad or laptop for college is a no-brainer. If you are still confused, make a list of iPad vs laptop pros and cons, considering features and utility, to make a decision. For college use, I recommend that you get a laptop, which would certainly be the best choice.

As I already discussed before, the Apple iPad is highly overpriced, has the least amount of features, compared to a netbook computer or laptop computer and has a very limited range of applications. It makes me wonder why would anybody prefer an iPad to a laptop computer! The comparison itself is absolutely wrong. To sum it all up, if you are looking for a costly toy to show off, get an Apple iPad, but if you need real functionality, go for a full scale laptop computer.
Advertisement