Goodbye: my tablet and I go our separate ways

Goodbye: my tablet and I go our separate ways

Fun fact: my first ever Android device was a tablet. A first generation Samsung Galaxy Tab. Over time, I bought three more tablets, the latest being a Samsung Galaxy TabPro 8.4 (WiFi). But now it's time to retire the device, and I won't be treating myself to another.

It was actually quite predictable. A few months ago I'd been complaining about the lack of choice when it comes to high-end tablets. And now, my Android tablet is about to get the boot. My reason begins in late fall 2016. At some point before Christmas, I placed my tablet on a bookshelf temporarily. I did this to hide it from my son who had recently pulled everything out of the desk. I haven't touched the tablet since. A few days ago, I made the decision to abandon it entirely. The remaining data will be backed up, the device reset and then resigned to the closet or given to relatives. The last option would be ideal, given that the tablet still works. 

Why get rid of it, though? For me, it's just a matter of having a clean break. The tablet doesn't do me any good when it's lying around unused. And, if I retire it, then I don't have to put in the effort to update apps and firmware, or charge the device on the rare occasion when I actually want to use it. As the tablet is still running CyanogenMod, updates are always available, but first, I'd have to migrate from CyanogenMod to Lineage OS. It seems like more trouble than it's worth.

AndroidPIT samsung galaxy tabpro 84 4017
Galaxy TabPro 8.4 / © ANDROIDPIT

I simply don't have any real use for the the tablet in my daily life. Surfing the internet? I can do that faster on my smartphone, and quicker still with a laptop. Typing up documents for work? Without a laptop I'd be lost - tablet keyboards don't cut it for me at all. Watching movies or television shows? I'd rather use the television. I could go on. 

One use case remains: gaming. But, most mobile games are optimized for smartphones. I do have a few games on my tablet, and of these, only Broken Sword has been a faithful companion. I've been puzzling through that 90's adventure for over two years now. 

This game would be the only reason to keep the tablet, which isn't a very convincing argument. The tablet originally suited me just fine, but suffered from two problems. Android never updated the version, citing 'KitKat stays KitKat', or something to that effect. The second issue was how even CyanogenMod with Marshmallow would jerk in the launcher. It wasn't terrible, but it was still enough to annoy me.

AndroidPIT samsung galaxy tabpro 84 4019
It was nice knowing you, tablet. / © ANDROIDPIT

Tablet nostalgia: having no tablet   

Nevertheless, looking back at our list of the best Android tablets, I'm left feeling a little wistful. At the moment however, I just can't see a benefit of having such an expensive gadget in my life. The Yoga Book could be interesting, but the Intel processor isn't ideal for my gaming 'ambitions'. The Pixel C is appealing but, like the Galaxy Tab S3, it's still too expensive for me.

AndroidPIT samsung galaxy tabpro 84 4010
I don't need a tablet anymore. / © ANDROIDPIT

Although I'm a little relieved to be rid of the TabPro 8.4, I'm also somewhat sentimental. For the first time in a long while, I won't have a tablet. Tablets will return to my agenda only when either high-end hardware comes at a reasonable price, or when a device offering real value against the laptop/smartphone combo appears. 

Do you have a tablet? How useful do you find it? Let us know in the comments below.

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  • Angela Jones May 9, 2017 Link to comment

    I'm still rocking a Galaxy tab 4 SM-T533 10.1 and it's still pretty fast. There are things that my s7 edge and my desktop can't do like my tab can do, like download my hours, (I use it for other stuff too!) Sometimes it's quicker just to crank up my tab than my desktop. I've had my tab for a couple of years now, and the OS is Lollipop 5.2.2....

    • Steve May 9, 2017 Link to comment

      I agree that there are things I could a lot easier in my tablet than smartphone. It's been 6 days now since using my tablet however I did get it out yesterday and did a factory reset on it and I have to say that I am thinking I may start using it again for watching YouTube, Google Play Movies, Amazon Kindle etc. It's back in the draw but I can here it talking to me...

      • Brittany McGhee May 10, 2017 Link to comment

        Steve, let us know how many days you can last without it!

      • Steve May 10, 2017 Link to comment

        Will do Brittany. I think the first couple of weeks are the toughest then I am hoping it gets easier. Reading back it kind of makes me sound as if I am some kind of addict giving up his fix. It is tough though as something that has been part of my internet life for past 5 years ain't there anymore. Ha. I will keep you informed. Thanks for the interest.

      • Steve May 12, 2017 Link to comment

        OK, here we go, you asked for it... drum roll please.... I HAVE GONE BACK TO USING MY TABLET!!! There you have it. Hey, what's with all the BOO'S?

        After not using it at all since the 3rd May (9 whole days) I have gone back to my Samsung Tab A 10.1. Reasons are many. I prefer the larger screen. I subscribe to quite a few digital magazines and though I can read these on my mobile the 10.1 size is so much easier. As a 50+ Web surfer ( No not a silver one thank you) the eyes aren't what they used to be and even with glasses I found myself squinting. And now my tablet shall be getting the latest Android update, as announced in the news yesterday, so I couldn't be happier.

        Don't get me wrong. My smartphone is always in my back pocket when I am out and about but now I do all my browsing at home with the tablet.

        One of my favourite YouTube tech reviewers has been using a BLU phone for past couple of weeks and has really enjoyed it so I have ordered one too. The BLU 5.5 inch Life Max to be precise. I don't agree in paying £700+ for a phone and am very much in the budget bracket so will enjoy playing with this.

        Thank you again for a great article and I have to say that AndroidPit is one of the BEST news and reviews sources around. You will see me spending a bit more time in the Forum pages, using my TABLET!! Haha.

  • Steve May 4, 2017 Link to comment

    Thanks for this article. I gave up my tablet yesterday, May 3rd 2017. I have been using a tablet for past 5 years. Always Samsung starting with the Tab 3 7inch, then recently with a Tab A 10.1inch. Never went for the real expensive versions as money never been there for wasting in such a cavalier manner. Been using it less and less last 3 months. I do everything now on my Moto G4. Yep, no flagship for me either. Who can justify £700-£900 for a phone and 2 year contracts are so last year. As it has only been 24 hours I still feel that I have lost an old friend. The tablet now lives in the bottom of my bedside cabinet so not too far away. I guess I will feel better as the days go by then it's a reset and on eBay for sale. Goodbye buddy. R.I.P Tablets.

  • Bill Whitfield May 4, 2017 Link to comment

    I have a 8 inch tablet gets used daily....
    Longer battery life without killing phone waiting for phone call.
    Plus being truck driver I use it to do electronic logbook.
    So I say if you have no use for it now, you likely had no use for it when you bought it, likely buying it just cause you wanted it

  • mjh49783 May 4, 2017 Link to comment

    What can a tablet do for me that a PC, or smartphone can't? Nothing that makes it worth justifying the purchase of one.

  • BruinGuy May 4, 2017 Link to comment

    I got a Chromebook Plus a few months ago and haven't charged my Galaxy Note 10.1 tablet since.

  • Ellett May 4, 2017 Link to comment

    I guess if you don't read, this is a viable choice; movies on a tablet (or phone) are a joke; but I read, a lot, and I always have a 7-8" tablet in my jeans picket when I'm out and about. My family uses the larger Pixel/Nexus/Galaxy phone models, so we all have large, hi-res screens on our phones, but we all have lightweight tablets because the increase in screen size makes the reading experience, whether it's a "paperback", a blog app like Feedly, or just browsing a web site, so much better.

    We got rid of all our larger, 9-10" tablets because the size and weight meant that they weren't suitable for mobile use, and a convertible Chromebook with Play Store, like the original ultra-portable ASUS Flip or the new Samsung Chromebook Plus, provides a much more flexible solution.

  • Simon Mouer May 4, 2017 Link to comment

    Well, I have on my desk
    (1) a 23" 1920x1080 (16:9) LCD-LED screen all-in-one Windows 10 PC, which I compute on
    (2) a 24" 1920x1200 (16:10) LCD back-lit screen monitor, which I use for TV,
    (3) a 9.7" 2048x1536 (3:4:5) superAMOLEDscreen Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 tablet,
    (4) a 6" 2560x1440 (16:10) superAmOLED screen BLU Pure XL cell phone.

    And, in a box somewhere, retired and unused. is
    (5) a 8.4" 2560x1600 (16:10) LCD-LED screen Samsung Galaxy Tab Pro 8.4 tablet.

    I agree with the author that the Tab Pro 8.4 is ready for retirement -- it runs on KitKat, has limited RAM and ROM, and is relatively slow compared to newer tablets. And the Tab Pro 8.4 isn't that much bigger than my 6" phone. In fact I retired mine last year. However, I disagree that tablets are dead, and that no viable replacement exists.

    Samsung's high-end Tab line (Tab Pro 8.4, Tab S, Tab S2 (1st generation), Tab S2 (2nd Generation) evolved way past the Tab Pro 8,4. The latest Tab S2 is arguably 4th generation, and one hell of good tablet -- maybe the best on the market. And maybe Samsung will even upgrade the OS from Android 6 to 7 (hope so).

    If I am at my desk, I use my PC mostly, and the tablet is supplemental. If I am away from my desk, but around the house I grab the tablet to continue whatever I was doing on the PC, or watch a TV program, If I am mobile on the go, it depends where I am going and if I am going to be sitting around waiting. If I am just going there and back quickly, I just take my phone. But if I am going to be there awhile (like waiting for my wife while she shops) then I also carry my Tab S2 9.7", which, because of the different aspect ratio, is three times the screen size of my 6" phone.

    In fact, the 3:4:5 aspect ratio of the Tab S2 makes easier and better browsing on the internet, than does the 16:9 aspect ratio of the PC screen. I do not like the 16:9 aspect ratio for a computer screen.

  • Louie Cafarella May 4, 2017 Link to comment

    I'm an Android phone user, but when it comes to tablets the iPad is the only way to go IMHO.

  • Dwarfer66 May 4, 2017 Link to comment

    I only use my Tab S 10.5 for a few games and to watch tv shows/movies when the power goes out in the house, apart from that is barely gets used.

  • Rothman May 4, 2017 Link to comment

    I got a ASUS tablet in January, and retired it in early April. At the beginning, I used it to watch movies or so in the bed. But gradually I didn't used it much. Since watching movies or surfing the internet with laptop is much convenient. If you say gaming? I will say playing game on my phone will be funnier. So the tablet was left unused since then. Then came to the end of March, when I booted it up I found it was unable to connect to WIFI. So it was fired.

  • Dean L. May 4, 2017 Link to comment

    I use a tablet for the larger screen cause I'm old. And don't want to lug more than a pound or so of weight.

  • Albin Foro May 4, 2017 Link to comment

    Frankly, my 7" tablet is the go to device around the house - and has most of the apps I use - while the 5" phone sits waiting for calls or SMS (recently terminated the landline) or to go out. I just like the bigger screen both for reading and keyboarding, yet unlike a laptop it's small enough to move around conveniently. I'm completely unwilling to either pay for or pack around a phablet-sized phone - certainly can understand that tablets are redundant to those, and my guess is the writer has one.

  • Jay Viper May 4, 2017 Link to comment

    I'd much rather buy an iPad (which includes all the tablet UI apps) than buy another Android tablet (finding a good one is getting hard to find)

  • mae mae May 4, 2017 Link to comment

    -- I use Windows 10 tablet. I like it very much. I have 4 : Acer 3W, HP, Ainol and Surface 3. I use it to write blog and notes and books. I can work while laying on my bed and sitting on my chair.

  • Bruce S. May 4, 2017 Link to comment

    I have bought three tablets in my life, all Samsung. First was a 10.1" Tab 2. Then a 7" Tab 3. Performance on both them pretty much sucked and neither had enough internal flash to install much, especially with all the bloatware Samsung installs and keeps you from uninstalling. The Tab 2 got so bad I had little choice but to install a Cyanogenmod ROM, which has worked OK. The Tab 3 is just too slow to be usable. My current is a 10.1" Tab 4 and it's running Lollipop. No chance of further upgrades, but it doesn't need an OS upgrade. It only has 16GB internal flash, and that's its current issue. Apps just keep getting bigger and it's running out of space for them. Not all apps can use external flash, and those that can still need some internal flash. After modifying all apps that CAN use external flash to use it, the net reduction in internal flash use was too small to matter. The Tab 4 is a good performer. I use it quite a bit, actually. It's best for watching movies on airplanes, with Bluetooth noise-canceling headphones, of course. It's also quite good for keeping up with email, looking for movies in theaters, shopping on Amazon, and doing things on the web. Yes, my laptop does all these things better. But it's also four times the size, so it's harder to lug around. I do have a keyboard for it, and I use that when I am on business trips so I can type emails faster. My latest laptop is a touchscreen hybrid, so it can be used like a tablet but is still much bigger than my Tab 4. Will I buy another tablet? Probably not. Ever. But I'll probably keep using the Tab 4 until it dies.

  • Naccasa Bobi May 4, 2017 Link to comment

    Love my Samsung tablet.

    • Steve May 12, 2017 Link to comment

      Which one have you got?

  • Alec B. May 3, 2017 Link to comment

    missus, 5year old tab and 9 pups is chaos fun !... how the Tab is not broken is I've got a great grip ... after hi jinks and sleep has claimed the fun ...I hook in plugs and watch on my 5 year old 10" Samsung Pro Tab content ..its timed off at 23:30.... and its always been my faithful mate, like my missus.

  • Douglas Nolan May 3, 2017 Link to comment

    Really enjoy my tablet.. Galaxy Tab S 10.5 WiFi running Slim 6 ROM, xposed enabled.. Viper4Android, Greenify etc

  • Mark Pease May 3, 2017 Link to comment

    I couldn't live without my tablets (my 12" Chuwi dual boot Win 10/And 5.1 is the best). I just don't like the smaller (sub 8") screens of smart phones and it doesn't help that I am in a rural dead spot for cell service. Even if I had a cell phone I wouldn't use a smart phone due to the requirement for an expensive data plan. Can you say Dino-Sowah?

  • Viktor jovanović v. May 3, 2017 Link to comment

    I never owned a tablet; on smarth phone is all I need...

  • Stephen Andersen May 3, 2017 Link to comment

    I love my tablet for the e-reader. I use both Amazon and Barnes & Noble apps for reading. Reading on my smartphone is too difficult, mainly the screen is too small. I game on both my phone and tablet and prefer the tablet for the bigger screen. I have a Galaxy S7, so perhaps when I upgrade my phone to a larger screen I may change my mind.

  • jack May 3, 2017 Link to comment

    I've never owned a tablet cos the laptop/smartphone combo has always satisfied all my needs. These include running my own finance business and regular overseas travel for both business and pleasure. I can see how tablets could be useful for some, however IMHO far too many users were simply victims of yet another "clever" marketing strategy which persuaded people to purchase a product which they never actually needed.

    So glad to see that I'm not the only person who holds the view that tablets are nowhere near as "necessary" as we've been programmed to believe.

    Deactivated Account

  • Beltija May 3, 2017 Link to comment

    I have a Galaxy Note 10.1 2014 Edition but I don't use it that much anymore. My Galaxy S4 was my go to device and now that I have a shiny new S8, what's the point?

  • W Jerald Cole May 3, 2017 Link to comment

    As with any device, the first question should be, "What am I going to use it for?". The second question, "Where do I want to use it?". If just for TV or games, I can see the logic here. However, if you are on the go, the reasons are completely different. I can not take my TV on the airplane or into the car with me. I use my table mostly for reading books, wherever I am. It is a lot easier to hold than a heavy hardback, and a lot easier to read than a paperback. Games, TV, streamed movies, web browsing - all still good reasons if you are out of the house.

    Yes, the regular updates are a pain - but have you paid attention to what Windows does? My 8" ASUS is not something I would want to use for work, but for my purposes it makes lots of sense.

  • Frost Sandmoon May 3, 2017 Link to comment

    Buy from China, have a basic tethered ability phone or free roaming net and a Cube i7 Stylus drawing, windows 10/android slate. sit in a pub and have fun. You will leave there with more money than you spent..... With a few bods for company....:-)

  • Deezul Yusof May 3, 2017 Link to comment

    I started out on Android 2.1 eons ago on a 7 inch tab then moved up to 10inch Android tab and Win CE Samsung phone and Nokia phones somewhere along the way I migrated to 6 inch Android phones.But the tabs experience that cannot be replaced is the screen size. My phones selection is limited to a minimum 6 inch screen but now my main phone is a 7inch phablet. I still maintain my 10inch tab ( 5 in total) for storage hogging apps. My solution is a phablet. I consider myself a tablet or phablet man. I dont think I can live with a 5 inch screen.

  • Leslie Anne Chatterton May 3, 2017 Link to comment

    I love my tablets - all 5 of them. They sit in various rooms of the house so I'm never far from one. My phone's 5.5 inch screen is great for a quick check but a 7" or 10" screen is so much better for everything else. Yes, I'm old (78) but my eyesight is excellent. Just as everyone has replaced their 17" B&W TV with a 50+" LED colour screen I really enjoy my tablets' larger screens.

  • Michelle Mitchell May 3, 2017 Link to comment

    I have a Nexus 9 that I keep on my nightstand. I usually only use it when I don't have my laptop or my Chromebook Flip handy, so it is really just out of laziness. I also keep an old Samsung tablet connected to my stereo system for streaming. I also have one in the garage for when I am working out there. And one on my deck. And one in my travel bag.

    I used to work for a company that bought tablets by the gross, so I had a bottomless supply of them. If I had to actually pay for one today, I would stick with my Chromebook Flip (touchscreen plus full keyboard) and phone instead.

  •   31
    Deactivated Account May 3, 2017 Link to comment

    my 1st android device was a Nexus 7 lte later upgraded to Samsung Note 12.2..
    stopped using em when I got a Nexus 6..
    and never missed them.. not even a little bit.
    can't think of a reason to use a tablet, I cast movie's to a TV, all other stuff, browsing, shopping etc is just easier and so much quicker on a large phablet..
    Google and others have gone to great lengths to make the whole internet mobile friendly with AMP etc..
    although I still use a more compact device with a 5"ish screen for mobile phone use
    I can't ever see me using or needing a tablet again.

    • Brittany McGhee May 3, 2017 Link to comment

      I find that there are very few times when I would be better served by using a tablet instead of a laptop or phablet, too.

  • David Ascher May 3, 2017 Link to comment

    my tablets have been free from ATT (with 2 year contract; 5 dollars/month for )... I usually use them only on wifi at the dining room table where I catch up on my emails, read the newspaper, and occasionally do some small website maintenance task (I have apps for ftp and SSH access). Laptop takes up too much room on the table and is likely to get food or drink in the keyboard. I recently bought a cheap, pretty decent bluetooth keyboard that I use when writing longer missives like this one. (EC Technology folds in thirds for travel). The laptop is for serious work sessions mostly.

    I only use a phone (with wifi) when at somebody's house (who has wifi) and need to check for an important email. I hate that small screen.

    love my tablet - just got (for 'free' ) LG G Pad X 10.1. Has ability to display 2 apps in side by side windows - nice- and ios reasonably fast. Android 6.

  • Mark G. May 3, 2017 Link to comment

    I have a excellent Samsung Galaxy S7 & Great Samsung Tab S2 both running 7.0, I use my tablet & phone 50/50, some apps I only use on the tablet (TV, movies, catchup) I also prefer the larger screen whilst going through emails and links to websites, again doing social media is preferred on the larger screen.
    Granted I can perform everything on my S7 and I can cast to my Chromecast or directly to my Samsung TV, this is fine if I'm on my own or those with me are wanting to watch what I am, there are times when I can watch my own content or in my bedroom or on a bus having the larger screen is a positive issue.

    I also use both devices to separate data, (movies and documents on the tablet, music and photos on the S7).

    Certainly I can easily live without the tablet but I can say that with other devices (fit band / smart watch etc). I chose to enhance my mobile computing which my tablet succeeds in doing.

    Peace 🖖🏼

  • Thomas Jensen May 3, 2017 Link to comment

    I agree also. Been using my Pixel XL a lot lately for almost everything. Just wish it had a bigger screen. If there is going to be a new and bigger Pixel XXL., I wont need my Nexus 9 tablet at all.. More toys for the kids to use.

    To be fare, my wife does use her tablet to look up cooking recipes and watch movies almost every day

    • Brittany McGhee May 3, 2017 Link to comment

      What is your ideal screen size for a hypothetical Pixel XXL?

      • Thomas Jensen May 3, 2017 Link to comment

        Anything slightly over 6" would be great. I moved from a Nexus 6 to the Pixel Xl but it is a little too small. Great phone but I need a Bigger screen

      • Mark G. May 4, 2017 Link to comment

        I don't think increasing the smartphones size is the answer, sure it makes media usage better but the downside is it becomes harder to hold/use, in which case having a tablet with a better size screen and similar handling makes more sense.

        Peace 🖖

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