iPad vs. Nokia n800

I have a solution for all the hipsters who want to buy an iPad (I was going to try and screw with that name to make it sound bad.. but then Apple had already done my work for me).

Buy a Nokia n800. On eBay. For about $100.

Nokia n800



400mhz processor, decent graphics

1ghz Tegra 2 from Nvidia. Good graphics and speed


256mb, with 2 SD card slots up to a 64gb total

16gb up to 64gb


resistive touch-screen LCD 4.1 inches 800×480 at 225 dpi

capacitive touch-screen LCD 9.7 inches 1024 x 768 at 132 dpi


0.5lbs in a form factor slightly larger than an iPhone etc. Also comes with large ugly bezel.

1.5 lbs, big square ugly thing with a huge bezel and no damn hope of going in any pocket


Maemo 2008, which means you have complete Linux style control over the device, everything on it, everything it is doing and there are no limits to the power you can wield.

iPhone OS 3.2, which means it looks great, feels great, and does nothing. No multitasking (one app at a time), no control over the OS, no control even over the files you save on your computer..


Tons of good apps for free developed by linux geeks. Including lots of great stuff like Skype for free calling. Plus, see below (psst – it has flash).

160,000 apps designed for the iPhone, plus iBooks – which lets you pay $15 for a eBook.. woo.. did I mention they are all controlled by Apple? No VOIP to be found here..

Browsing the intertubes

Mozilla (firefox) based browser which, OMG, handles flash. Real, full flash. You know, the one that runs facebook, your stock trading site, youtube, hulu, and every online game ever made, all gajillion of them – take that app store.

Really fast processor coupled with a really nice screen = good browsing. Until you run into something with flash. Or until you want to open an app. Which means you have to close the browser. Then when you want to look at that website which was loading over that crappy ATT 3g network you pay $30 a month for, it’s not there anymore. You closed it. Repeat cycle until iPad becomes iHurlThroughTheWindow


Wifi 802.11 b/g, Bluetooth 2.0 and USB 2.0 high-speed (for things that don’t require USB power – it can’t handle those, so a powered hub is needed.)

Wifi 802.11 b/g/n, Bluetooth 2.1, USB with special adapters (really? Why apple, why). Also 3G for $130 more up front and $30 a month on ATT.

Battery Life

Infinite. I kid, but a) it lasts for a long time (if my almost identical 770 is anything to go on) and it is user replaceable. I have two.

10 hrs, which is pretty good, but classic apple you cant get at the battery


640x480 VGA with video. Which is kind of dated these days.

None. Which is… stupid. Honestly, how much does camera hardware cost? $5? $10?

As an eBook

Mediocre. Can read any pdf etc, and if you set the screen right, not too bad. And, it travels well.

Mediocre. Nice bundled software, but books cost too much and it will be hard to take this anywhere.

Music and Movies

Decent. Media player could use some work, supports a bunch of formats, and simple load stuff up on SD cards and plug it in, whatever you want. Screen set up for widescreen, but is kinda small for movies (not bad though)

Very good, except the closed ecosystem thing. Still, this should be a very nice media player. Major gripe is the fact that it is 4:3. Remember what 4:3 was? It was your TV before you got that new widescreen. So yeah… Apple wants to party like is 1999


Resistive screen = mostly stylus, though I like the touchscreen keyboard. Because of the form factor, easy to hold and use as a thumbboard

Capacitive multitouch screen, should be decent to type on… but not a damn clue how you are meant to hold it and type on it at the same time… one handed I guess? Apple knows this and released a keyboard which attaches to the iPad and holds it up… so it becomes a laptop… which you can’t move around with… Navigation in classic Apple style should be a breeze, and very nice


Nokia n800

Maxi pad. I mean iPad..


$180 on Amazon, $100 used on eBay. Maybe throw in $20 for a couple 4gb sd cards..

$500 for wifi only 16gb, up to $830+$30/mo for 64gb 3G… in other words.. WTF




I dont really recommend that everyone goes out an buys a Nokia n800. My point is the iPad is overpriced for what it does, as it really does not do much and costs a lot. As for media players, I have 4 or 5, so music is taken care of. Movies I dont find myself watching on the go very often, though I could on my nokia, Palm Pre, iPod Video, or - wait for it - laptop. Because the only time I do is when I am on a plane, and on a plane a laptop is far better than a slab of Apple.

Long story short, this is not a revolutionary device. It is not an impressive device. In my opinion, it is not even a good device. Much as Apple claims it is, it is not an e-reader such as the Kindle, it has the wrong screen. It is a big iPod touch, or iPhone you cant call from.

In other words, all you really need to do to get an "iPad" on the cheap is this:

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