Android tablet apps suck, natch

March 19, 2012

Hardware, shmardware — it’s all about the apps. Whereas Apple certainly engineers and manufactures beautiful hardware, the most important reasons to buy the iPad are actually peripheral to device itself. Although there is no shortage of quality Android tablets available, according to at least one survey, the number of optimized apps truly worth your time numbers just 12, a mere dozen compared the hundreds if not thousands available to iPad owners.

Paul Thurrott says that Apple’s new tablet is the best available and the only product worth considering. That’s Thurrott, not the usual crew of Apple yes men.

For its part, PCWorld has awarded the new iPad an Editor’s Choice Award. However, they weren’t satisfied with (re)crowning the iPad king. They took a long, hard look at the Android competition and the verdict is damning.

“I was wrong to say about Android tablets, ‘competing tablets don’t have apps.’ Rather, competing tablets have apps that usually suck,” writes Sascha Segan. “Not all of them suck. CNN’s Android tablet app is gorgeous. But most of them do.”

And, PCMag’s iPad vs Android tablet app comparison isn’t some fanbois “because it sucks” slap down. Segan describes, often with great frustration, the Android tablet app experience.

“There’s a slice of geeks who won’t care, generally tech types who want to experiment and aren’t afraid of some trial and error,” writes Segan. “But for the mainstream consumer, hunting down and puzzling out Android tablet apps is just too complex and frustrating.”

That said, PCMag had little difficulty putting together a Top 100 best iPad list (See also: Top 20 best Retina display ready iPad apps), yet struggled to cobbled together a “12 Great Android Tablet Apps.”

Love or hate Apple, for the time being, the iPad is the only tablet worth considering. But, don’t take my word for it, let Paul Thurrott and PCMag convince you…

What’s your take?

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8 Responses to “Android tablet apps suck, natch”

  1. Srinivas:

    hey guys I just bought a new android 2.2 tablet from Wickedleak . Its a awesome tablet with sim card . thought it has no phone calling option I can use internet with my phone sim . Its super cool for only 6,000Rs I just love my Wpad

  2. matt:

    Apps, schmapps… all i care about is beautiful, clear fonts, a good browser, and support for a wide variety of video & audio and on those criteria, android tablets are more than fine.

  3. Pete:

    Don’t hold back Macfanbloggerboi, tell us how you really feel.

  4. Rick:

    Thousands of apps work 100% fine on tablets. Find developers that actually TEST their apps on tablets.

  5. dr evil:

    @Srinivas will never log back in to see, but it must suck to be him or her, having to manually spam sites all day long. Just another website to add to those not worthy of visiting, thanks Srinivas :-)


  6. anon:

    Of course by this logic with its billions of apps a tablet running Windows XP is far superior!

    Apple fans have always been deluded but it’s gone from being annoying to be just plain amusing when they buy their latest shiny piece of tat and then go to extraordinary lengths to defend it.

  7. Eric McBride:

    Funny..I have a Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1, and I have SO MANY BEAUTIFUL tablet optimized apps that fun VERY well.

  8. WOEHAA:

    I have read the article and I totally agree.
    That is, from a designer/engineer point of view.
    When it comes to standard activities (browsing, reading mail, sync my calendar with work etc) than I actually prefer My TF300T with ICS.

    But… I am baffled by the shear lack of apps that actually make you work with the tablet.
    If you want to sketch, draw .. in other words be really creative with a tablet, then the Ipad is the only option. Sketchbook, Adobe Ideas, FreeForm, iDraw, but also tools like pressure sensitive stylus … all of that is either not present or flawed as heck on the android. And it is not going to change very soon. Virtually all requests to Ipad devs “will you make an android version too, please?” are answered with “the market is too fragmented on the device level. Meaning too many variabels ergo too much work.

    Phone apps that can be displayed on a tablet are in no way tablet apps. That only leads to a blown up interface with UI elements all over the place.

    As hardware I like my TF300T a lot. But for that I had to actually unlock it (void warranty) and put a custom MOD on it to be alble to use its full potential (delete bloathware, hack the sleepmode setting, CPU tweaks, etc).

    In my opinion : Android appropiate is for tinkerers, geeks and people with a not too much money to spend
    Ipad is more suited for the creative ones.
    Both can be used for browsing and playing useless games.

    I guess I should have bought the Ipad instead, even with its ridiculous restrictions

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