Tablets may be the future of computing, but a lot of us are still figuring out how they really fit into our lives. If you’d like to use your tablet for more than the occasional magazine, here are some clever ways you can put it to good use.
Get the Right Tablet
Obviously, step one is to get a good tablet. There are some great Android tablets out there, new Windows 8 tablets, and of course, the iPad. Tablets under $ 100 aren’t usually worth the trouble, and if you’re the DIY type, make sure you can get one that’s user-serviceable if something goes wrong.
Make It Productive
People have given tablets grief for just being “toys,” but the fact of the matter is that they can be great productivity tools—if you take advantage of their strengths. In fact, with the right apps and tricks, it can become an awesome productivity-boosting partner. The biggest problem with tablets is actually their inabilty to act as a communal device—which, in a household, is often what people want to use them for. Luckily, we’ve got some ways around that too.
Find Some Clever Alternative Uses
Maybe you have a second, old tablet lying around. Or maybe you just don’t use your current one and want to find a new home for it. We’ve listed some great clever uses before, including using it as a dedicated recipe machine, a portable media center, a home automation system, or—for you gamers—a retro gaming arcade. You can also augment your computer with a tablet too, using it as a dedicated shortcut machine, trackpad, and more. If you want something really intense, try mounting it in your car for better music and navigation—whether it’s with a simple dashboard mount or integrated into the dashboard itself.
DIY Some Handy Accessories
Lastly, the right accessory can change quite a bit. We’ve shared more tablet stands, cases, wall mounts, and styluses than we can count, not to mention articulating arms to prevent from that oh-so-dangerous ergonomic strain.
Want to do something a bit more interesting? Whip up a custom screen protector for only 5 cents, turn your tablet into a softbox, or boost its volume with a solo cup (or, if you’re adventurous, a few carefully drilled holes). If you really want to get adventurous, you can even turn an old laptop into a tablet for any of the clever uses listed above.
Tablets may seem simple, but with the right attitude, they can serve a multitude of purposes—even more than a laptop. Take some time to explore the possibilities and you’re sure to find something that suits you.
Have a good weekend!