How the Polaroid Tablet Works

Polaroid Tablet features

Tablet computers make it easy to read just about anything anywhere.
Tablet computers make it easy to read just about anything anywhere.

It's important to remember that the Polaroid Tablet isn't designed to compete with the iPad 3 and other high-end tablets, except on price. So if you're looking for a tablet to use for editing video clips, making digital art, running emulation programs that enable you to control your desktop computer remotely, or other kinds of heavy-duty stuff, this machine doesn't have either the processing muscle or the screen resolution to get the job done [source: CNet].

Another important thing to remember is that the Polaroid Tablet is a 7-inch (17.8-centimeter) class tablet, which means that its screen is about the size of an old-fashioned paperback novel. That relatively small space limits both how much your eyes can see, and how easily your fingers can manipulate the screen. If you've used a Kindle Fire comfortably, the Polaroid Tablet probably will feel fine to you, but if you need more screen real estate, you're better off with an iPad or one of the 10-inch (25.4-centimeter) tablets made by manufacturers such as Sony or Asus [source: CNET].

But enough with the downsides, because there's plenty you can do with a Polaroid Tablet, such as listen to music, read books, take pictures, Web surf and send e-mail. As previously mentioned, the device runs Android Ice Cream Sandwich OS, which its maker says is optimized for small-screen devices. It offers both an apps launcher -- basically a page of icons -- and resizable "widgets" that you can use to access content such as music, e-mail, and streams of messages from Twitter and Facebook, without having to actually launch a full-fledged app [source:]. That makes it easy to do three or four things at once on your tablet, which is great for multitasking junkies.

Ice Cream Sandwich also allows you to download and run scores of apps from the Android online app store, including both the Kindle and Google book readers, social networking apps such as Facebook and LinkedIn, and tons of games. One caveat: The Polaroid Tablet's manual warns that unlike an iPad, some apps designed for phone use won't run, so be sure that an app is tablet-compatible before you buy it [source: Southern Telecom].

And there's one main thing a Polaroid Tablet can do that an iPad can't. It has a slot that enables you to add additional memory in the form of an inexpensive SD card. That allows you to boost the storage capacity of the device to 36 megabytes, more than twice that of the basic iPad.