App issues, where my tablet is concerned…

The other day, I was removing apps on my tablet for maintenance purposes, as many of the apps that were on there were ones I no longer used. While I was doing so, Jennifer idly remarked that the UNO app was no longer working. I attempted to launch it, and it errored out with a message saying the hardware configuration was not supported, and that I should request a refund. I was much less annoyed than puzzled, as I had installed the app about a year and a half previously and it should have complained well before now.

My tablet is a 32 GB HP TouchPad. It had originally been purchased as a wedding gift for me and Jennifer by her mom, and it’s served us very well. However, shortly after we purchased it, we realized that the app selection was very limited. The TouchPad had been discontinued almost as quickly as it had been announced, and as a result developers did not flock to HP’s mobile OS, webOS. It was a shame, really, because webOS was a decent operating system. Fortunately, I was introduced to a TouchPad port of CyanogenMod, an after-market Android distribution, and quickly got it installed. After I got CyanogenMod 7 installed, webOS fell by the wayside and was almost never used again. I’ve since upgraded the tablet to CyanogenMod 9, and it works very well for what I use it for.

The thing that really nags at me, though, is the application support. Granted, I have no issue trying out free apps like Pitfall!, Angry Birds, and the like on the tablet because I’m not out any particular investment. The problem is when I see games that I actually want to try like Final Fantasy IV, and I don’t know if the tablet will be supported or not. The UNO app isn’t the first time I’ve encountered a problem. The best example I could think of a problem with an app on my tablet is the Flixster app, which is the official player for Ultraviolet digital copy playback. Any attempt to play any of my Ultraviolet copies fails, as the app considers my tablet “rooted” and as such ineligible for media playback. (Funny enough, Netflix has no such qualms about my tablet streaming movies.) I really don’t want to be spending money (especially not $16 in the case of Square-Enix’s games) when there’s a risk of the app not working properly, or at all.

The obvious solution is to get another tablet, but to be honest I can’t justify the cost of one right now. If I were to get a new tablet, I would likely want an iPad Mini, simply because it’s relatively inexpensive as far as iPads go and it would sync to my existing iOS app library (my cell phone is an iPhone 4). In addition, I want to start buying tables for Pinball Arcade, and as near as I can tell I can only avoid multiple purchases of the same table for different devices if they’re on the same platform (in this case, iOS). On the other hand, before I get myself a new tablet I’ll likely get Jennifer her own tablet, with the most likely candidate being a Kindle Fire.

Ah, well. While it’s annoying me right now, I can live with the frustrations. Hopefully in the future I’ll be able to justify the purchase a new tablet, but until then, I’ll make do with what I have.