I purchased the Acer Iconia to replace my old netbook. As an everyday laptop it has fairly average spec but s far I have found it adequate for what I need. Its major advantage is the detachable keyboard, giving the user flexibility to use it as a netbook or a tablet.
I have surprised myself by using it more often as a tablet than with the keyboard. The touch-screen is very responsive and I learned to use it very quickly. It is very thin and light, making it comfortable to use even for long periods of time. You can use almost all programmes and apps using just the screen (ie without the keyboard attached) - typing takes slightly longer but all other functions work just as well. The screen has its own power port, micro USB port, various card slots, a volume control, screen on/off button and screen rotate lock button.
The keyboard also has a power port and standard USB port. I have found the two batteries to be really useful - I can leave the keyboard charging while I use the screen as a tablet. Battery life is excellent - if I use it on medium screen brightness, with wifi on, using it for internet, apps, youtube and word processing, it will last me a full working day, easily.
The design is good but the bit which attaches the screen to the keyboard feels slightly cheap and unsteady. So far I have had no problems with it but I will be interested to see how well it lasts.
On a device so small and slim, I probably shouldn't be surprised with 1 x USB and 1 x micro USB but I have occasionally found this inconvenient as my previous netbook had 3 USB ports.
The internal memory is not huge but I store everything important on an external hard drive and/or on a cloud so this has not been a problem. I generally only keep what I need on a daily basis stored on the computer.
Considering the cost of buying a netbook with similar spec AND a tablet, I would say that the Acer Iconia is very good value for money.
Sorry, really bad title... In all seriousness though, this is an amazing piece of kit. In my opinion its far better than my iPad. Let me tell you why:
* Battery life
It's amazing, I'm not talking good, it really is brilliant (if used with the keyboard)
The keyboard doubles as a second battery, which when used together, lasts almost half as long again as my iPad - giving about 20 hours of use (which lasts me around 2-3 days on high use).
If you don't want to use the keyboard to help boost the battery power, and just want to use it as a tablet, it is true that on its own, the battery in this tablet isn't quite as good as that of the iPad, though to be fair if I'm going on a long journey where i'm not bothered for the keyboard, i can still charge it up and take it with me. That way if I run out of juice, I know that I can just plug in the keyboard and use it for another 8 hours or so.
The device can be given a quick boost charge, with just 30minutes charge = around 9 hours use.
I was a little concerned that the hinge and join between the screen and the keyboard would be a bit flimsy, but its really solid and really seems built to last. Its also really easy to connect and disconnect which makes it easy to change between modes.
* Operating System
This device unlike many cheaper models runs full windows 8, (many tablets run a basic tablet version of windows 8 which cannot run programmes - just apps). This means that any software you can put on your PC, will work on the device (so no hassles with compatibility or faulty apps). It works with all programmes really well, I was a little concerned that a tablet would struggle to run complex, full programmes smoothly but there are no problems at all!
*Appearance and Quality
It looks and feels like a quality piece, the casing seems strong and looks classy. I also really like the feel of the keyboard, although I read in other reviews that some people find it a little small, i found that you quickly get used to this. The keys feel nice when typing and I actually find it easier to type on than my desktop now that I have used it for a while.
The touchscreen is really responsive and works well with multi gestures. The colours seem really rich and it displays photos and videos really well with deep blacks and good colour control. I would have to admit, its not quite as crisp as the retina displays on apple, but it's still really nice (don't be put off by this). It also seems to have a better coating on it, and doesn't seem to leave as many fingerprints and marks on it as the iPad which means i have to spend less time cleaning - which is never a bad thing!
You can also plug this in to a HDMI monitor which means that if you want to you can connect it up to a TV.
Overall I would say that this is a perfect little device for everyday use, and with the flexibility of using it as either a laptop, or a tablet, and its operating system letting you run normal windows programs on it without problems.
If you don't want to use the keyboard and don't need to use it that much for work, then i would recommend the iPad as the battery life (as a stand alone tablet) is slightly better and the range of apps keeps things fun. However if like me you would like the option of using it as either a laptop or a tablet, and want to use it as less of a novelty item, and more as a normal highly transportable laptop with all the normal windows programmes (which aren't available as apps) then I would definitely recommend this item!.