I agree, go with a tablet
As to the other questions here is how i would explain it. If it is wifi only, that means the tablet does not have a data plan. It can be used to read on its own, but to download books, apps, games, facebook, surf the internet, check email, well, you will have to be in a location that has wifi--either in your home using your home wifi router (if you have one) or in a hot spot like a public library, McDonald's, school, etc. You can download in these locations with a wifi signal. If there is no wifi signal available, then the tablet is only usable to read. If you want the convenience of "on demand" downloading, going on internet, etc whenever you want, then you would need a tablet that has wifi and LTE. But you will have to pay for a data plan to use the LTE. For example, I have an iPad that has wifi and LTE because I travel a lot, hotels charge an obscene amount for wifi, and I use my tablet just like I would a computer. My carrier, AT&T, assigned a phone number to my tablet and I pay for a monthly 3 gigabyte data plan. This is similar to smartphones that have data plans so the user can access the internet, facebook, download music or books, etc. You can check with your cell phone carrier for the price. I never have used more data than my plan permits because I do try to use free wifi as much as possible, especially with downloading a book, movie, songs, etc.- this type of downloading can really use up a data plan whereas internet usage uses little in comparison. I like having the ability to access the internet or download material whenever i want, so i am willing to pay for a data plan. A tablet with only wifi is less expensive than one with wifi and LTE. You could pay this extra $$ for a tablet with wifi and LTE but not get a data plan, but then what is the point of having LTE. But you cannot buy one with only wifi and then decide you also want LTE--you cannot add LTE at a later date to my knowledge. I also agree that you need to consider an 8 year old will be using it. You will want to buy a case to protect it when (not if) it gets dropped. So I would not worry about how thin it is or how lightweight since it'll be in a case. I would probably go with a less expensive one rather than an iPad, simply because no matter how responsible your child is, he/she is a child of 8. You may be surprised at how often you may want to "borrow" the tablet!! I live in Dallas and our library has thousands of digital books. I have downloaded the Overdrive and Kindle apps (they are free). I request a specific ebook, get an email that tells me it is available for download for 72 hours from the time of the email (and if i try to get it at 72 hours and 15 minutes later, it is gone! they have set up the time to access it electronically), and sometimes I can pick which reading app to use (Overdrive or Kindle or epub). I download it to my iPad tablet for free (even the Kindle ones through Amazon are free if going through the library) for exactly 3 weeks. I receive an email 2 days before the book is "due back" for return, the email reminds me the ebook will no longer be available in 2 days. After the 3 weeks, it is gone--I can no longer access it. At my library we cannot renew an ebook. instead, if you do not finish reading it, you have to go back in and re-request it. For some reason, it takes anywhere from 2-7 days rom the time I request the ebook until I get an email saying it is ready to download. Don't know if this is just my library or if it is like this everywhere. Seems like since it is electronic, there is no physical book, so I should have immediate access--but doesn't work this way and I've never asked why. Sorry for such a long answer but you said you are new at this. Sure would be nice if some grandparent or older cousin were getting a new tablet and your child could "inherit" the older tablet!
Was this reply helpful? (4) (2)