iPad, Kindle, nook... more than enough choice

A friend of mine bought a Kindle on the premise that he wanted to be able to read any [digital] book or PDF he had and be able to access a huge amount of online content. I played with it for a while, but I was disappointed with the ability to take notes - it has a keyboard, so why not a notes application? The most astute person would say... because its an e-book reader... DUH!

This got me to thinking more about what I would want it to do. In a device in the tablet format as offered by the Kindle and nook I would want it to be able to take notes and use it more as digital notepad. to be able to store hand-written notes and sketches from meetings or just things i want to note down - as well as reading books. But what else..

so along comes the iPad - almost everything I want. the only problem i have with the iPad is that it is tied to the apple store, unless you want to start 'jailbreaking' the thing to run other apps. Not to mention the limited 'upgradability'. 16GB on the entry level iPad for $499...  doesnt seem like you're getting a lot. And its not like its easy to add more - I heard there was an adapter that you could connect to it, to enable an SD card.

I read an interesting review by Jason Perlow, over on the ZDNet blogs looking purely at the e-book reading capability of the iPad.

Then, i was seriously impresed with the promo video for the Microsoft Courier - you have to watch this... unfortunatley it is only a promo video. the actual concept hasnt even been prototyped as far as I know.

HP has their tablet/slate PC almost ready to be out of the door, and with an impressive array of specs for $550 may be a good alternative.  Initial reviews are mediocre at best - mainly due to the performance of the device and possibly related to the fact it runs windows 7 on very basic hardware with an HP graphical front end.

So, I sit, wait and write my list of requirements. Im trying to remain positive that I will find a device that fits them.

  •  Must be touch - after using the iTouch it feels more natural to interact with your data instead of clicky buttons.
  • Must be a decent size - at least 'Letter' size
  • Must allow reading of e-books and PDFs
  • Must allow note taking - preferably handwriting
  • Wifi Enabled of course
  • at least 8 hours of battery life
  • expansion via USB or SD cards
  • Light in weight
Maybe... maybe... I could try an iPad... if i could get one for a decent price. I just dont think i can justify $500 for a large itouch.