I'm guessing that most clubs are like ours in that they already own a timing laptop to run the RM timing server. What I'd like to know is: what new hardware should a club purchase to be used for secondary roles like announcer, cone counter, etc?
Right now we have 2 laptops - one for timing and one for announce. This year as we transition to Axti.me, we've been using the announce laptop for staging and cone counting, and the announcer has used his smartphone or tablet. I think we need to buy something for him to use, or give him the laptop back and buy something else for the staging & cone counter.
As I understand it, all that's really needed is a web browser and a nice display. CPU speed, memory, etc. is not all that important, as we're simply accessing a web page. Our priorities would be cost, portability, screen quality (can be seen in daylight), preferably battery powered for 4-6 hours of continuous use, or able to use 12 V. Touchscreen is nice, but not necessary. My first thought is a 10" tablet. My main hesitation with a tablet is that it can grow legs very easily, whereas a laptop can be locked down and is a bit more conspicuous.
A decent 7" tablet can be had for around $100-150, but the 10" ones are more like $300-500. How about a Chromebook for $200-300? It has an 11" screen, bigger battery, and can be used for other things ... seems like a better choice on paper, but I've never used one. Would that work for secondary roles?
Any other recommendations?