This really depends on what you wish out of the PC.
All told, however, I am going to have to say a laptop might be still the very best all-rounder, though I can’t say how long it will stay that way.
As I respond to this question, there is a little red netbook sitting in my kitchen near the microwave, I use it to view internet programs while I am baking or washing up (Kevin Smith’s ‘Fatman on Batman’ podcast is my present favorite). I have used a netbook for a couple of years now and I’ve found it to be Okay. The problem using the netbook is it tends being slow and not have a huge amount of memory or processing muscle. Netbooks were designed as bargin, portable alternatives to laptops and, in that sense, they’ve done fine.
Evidently, tablet pc’s are fine things and also the tech is increasing quickly. In fact, that is a bit of a problem, really. If you purchase a top of the series tablet today, you are only likely to receive a year or two out of it before the tech is rendered ‘old hat’ through the persistent march of scientific progress.
Additionally, pc tablets suffer from the insufficient memory and a lot of models also have a relatively short battery life. A top-end pc tablet is probably better than a netbook and is definitely essentially the most portable of the three, but it will not match up to the laptop regarding processing muscle, or variety of use.
For skilled uses, gaming and almost anything else, a laptop is still your best choice. Although they are bulky and ungainly compared to either netbooks or tablets, the processing strength of a solid laptop quickly matches a desktop computer and also a high-end laptop is, essentially, a portable workspace.
Case in point, my colleague is a contract animator and, by definition, he has to spend endless hours functioning at his computer. Yet, his macbook pro makes it possible for him to journey around and stay with friends without ever missing a single deadline. For professional purposes, a laptop is, thus far, invincible.
Having said that, tablet pc’s are arising fast. If all you are after is a media player and a straightforward communications device, then a tablet is going to be cheaper and way more sensible than a laptop.
As I said at the beginning, it depends on what you are searching for.
Matt Egan at PC Advisor.co.uk, (a useful source of knowledge on this subject) says,
“In technology, you get what you pay for… most of the time. Right now, however, a certain class of cheap tablets are genuine bargains. Consider this: for the £450 price of a fairly basic 15in Dell or Lenovo laptop you could buy three Nexus 7, Kindle Fire HD or Nook HD (comparison review) tablets. So that makes tablets the cheaper option, right? Not quite. The Kindle Fire HD and Nook HD tablets are pure consumption devices. They are great for watching, listening and reading. But you can’t do much with them in terms of productivity”.
For the uncomplicated way to test your emails and watch films whilst wandering, get yourself a tablet. For the portable desktop, get yourself a laptop, it’s that straightforward. Netbooks are fine if you prefer a traditional PC setup to a more phone-like charms of a tablet pc.
That is about it, actually.