Once you've decided on an operating system, your list of choices starts to look a little more manageable (and if you've decided to go with iOS, your list will be very short indeed), making it easier for you to focus on the different features you'd like your new tablet to have.
Even if you go with the iPad 2, you'll have a choice between a standard Wi-Fi model, which needs access to a Wi-Fi network to connect to the Internet, and a 3G model, which connects via 3G when Wi-Fi is not available. With either model, you then have a choice of 16GB, 32GB or 64GB of storage. From there, it's really black or white (your two color choices!), since all iPad 2 models share the same screen size and include front and rear cameras for still photos and video recording.
If you choose to go with an Android or Windows tablet, you'll want to compare features across the various manufacturers to see how each tablet stacks up. Look at specs like battery life, Wi-Fi versus 3G or 4G access, storage capacity and processing speed, as well as extra features such as cameras and add-on accessories. Many tablets (including the iPad), now have both front and rear cameras so you can see your screen when you participate in Web chats (and see what you look like before you take a picture of yourself), as well as accessories like stands, wall mounts, remote controls, speakers and full external keyboards that can turn your tablet into a media center or a more productive work station.
If all your information gathering about tablets has been over the Web up until this point, now might be the time for some hands-on research. Read on to find out why.