I can understand the logic of getting a different tablet from me, since you need to cover as much of the diverse hardware
offerings as possible, and different BIOS and other factors can affect compatibility. The Miix 2 8" is the only one I would buy right now, because of the bright screen for cockpit
viewability and the internal GPS
. But if you don't need both of these features, there are other options.
Dell Venue 8 Pro or Venue 11 Pro are good tablets with favorable reviews
, but AFAIK, neither of those has internal GPS
, which I think would be very useful for your development. As I've mentioned elsewhere, the Miix 2 8" has internal GPS, but Microsoft only supports it in Modern apps out-of-the-box. The Geolocation TCP program that someone here wrote fixes that problem, but it would be EVEN BETTER to incorporate that into O
so that it works natively. The issue here is that the GPS is on some new bus architecture that Win 8.1 apparently only supports in the Modern environment
. The key question is whether this bus architecture is unique to Lenovo, or a new standard that future tablets will adopt. I have a feeling it's the latter, and if so, you really should get a tablet that supports that standard, since the GPS/tablet together will be a killer combination for O
There are VERY FEW Win8 tablets with GPS right now. And the lack of Microsoft support for legacy Windows desktop
programs causes there to be misinformation out there about which ones have it. There are numerous websites that say my Miix does not have GPS, but I've proven that it does. It's just that some reviewers tried to test it with legacy Windows navigation software
(Microsoft Streets & Maps is one of the ones that Microsoft Windows fails to support - go figure!). I guess those reviewers didn't think to look in Device Manager.
I checked a list of Win8.1 tablets on Wikipedia (you know how accurate they are!) and they show the Toshiba Encore as having GPS. Some other reviews
have noted this as well. The Encore gets dinged for being a little bulkier (thicker) than others, and screen brightness a little below average. It does have some higher end features, like microHDMI, which could make it very nice for configuring and debugging, since you can plug
it into a monitor
and have lots of real estate.
I am not sure how the Encore's GPS hardware
is configured, but I have a feeling that the way my Miix does it is a new design standard that others will follow. I believe I read somewhere that the new bus design (I forget what it's called) is needed to support energy management features like "airplane mode" that all tablets and phones require.
So if I were to buy today, I'd say Toshiba Encore is your best alternative to the Miix 2 for an 8" tablet. The answer could change tomorrow.
You could also try 10" tablets, but I do not know any of them that have internal GPS, which I think you should really have.