I was as clueless when a group of friends clubbed together to get me a tab for my birthday. It's a Sumvision Cyclone Astro+ running ice cream sandwich 4. I've been using it since June and it does all that I need it to - email, browsing, Skype and it was about £85 from Amazon I think. It only has a front camera so you can't use it as general purpose camera, but I use a Canon for that anyway. There are plenty of tabs out there for £100 or less.
The operating system works differently from Windows but is still pretty intuitive.
I am a man of simple tastes, I am quite satisfied with the best. (Oscar Wilde)