2010 will be the year of the net tablet, claims analyst
Apple's right on the money, then?
Web-connected portable devices will be snapped up by "tens of millions" of people worldwide this year, according to a forecast from industry watcher Deloitte.
“NetTabs” – touchscreen tablets primarily designed for web surfing, larger than a smartphone but less than a laptop – may turn out to be “just right” for millions of consumers in 2010, the company reckons.
Such gadgets have an advantage over smartphones, Deloitte claimed, because they offer a bigger screen for surfing the web and watching videos. But unlike netbooks and notebooks, which both offer bigger displays than smartphones have, NetTabs are lighter and cheaper.
Wireless connectivity will make NetTabs popular with network providers, but consumers will likely “demand big upfront subsidies” because NetTabs will cost more than most smartphones, Deloitte added.
NetTabs may will threaten the emerging e-book reader market, though that didn’t stop Deloitte from predicting that e-book reader sales will reach 5m units globally by Christmas.
However, the firm warned that of the 100m e-books it expects will be sold this year, the majority of titles will be read on NetTabs, smartphones or PCs.
Deloitte’s predictions are part of a wider technology forecast, which – based on conversations with over 7000 technology, media and telecoms experts – aims to spot the gadgets and technologies set to make it big during 2010. ®
So, spot what Apple is doing and call it a 'trend'. Genius. Have a bonus, Deloitte.
I've had a Tosh M200 Tablet for the last 5 years and it has now travelled the world with me. Originally bought as a high-end laptop/tablet with hi-res screen (12" 1400*1050 - can't get that any more!) it's spent more time with me than my other half, much to her annoyance...
In my experience there are a few things they will have to ace if this is to work:
1) Hi-res display: The major failings of most current laptops/tablets are the low dpi of their screens. It's the reason I can't replace mine, the current crop of widescreen TFTs are a poor 1200*800 max, which frankly has pixels the size of my teenage spots. The whole point of a tablet is that when you write with the stylus, you can't SEE the individual pixels - it's supposed to emulate paper, not an etch-a-sketch!
2) Usable outdoors, in daylight: Mine is great indoors, but useless in sunlight as the backlight ain't nearly bright enough too, so needs to be transflective or something.
3) Bloody good Voice Recognition: Handwriting recognition in XP amazed me with it's accuracy when I got mine, even though I can barely read my scribbles, so that's good to go already. Voice recognition is way harder, and a pain to train as well. Needs to be highly context sensitive to work well e.g. read, red, Redd, etc. The M200 has 3 mics on the screen to do noise cancelling, so an apple tablet would need a similar setup to work well. Unfortunately MS in their stupidity broke the VR in Office 2007 and said F&$k off and buy Vista if you want to use it again...
4) Weight: Mine is <2kg but still starts to strain the arm when writing for awhile. Theirs will need to be ~1kg for comfort. Optional Bluetooth keyboard option to save weight anyone?
5) Battery life: As a pen & paper replacement, it'll need to last long enough to get a day's work out of it - either very smart power management or amazing batteries are required.
/My two cents
I read a book
in the evening when I’m sick of looking at a screen all day. EBooks are an occasional convenience but i can't see the appeal of the massive initial outlay for the device not to mention the fact that you're paying (electricity) the entire time you're reading it....flat battery, gets stolen yadder yadder.
I'm a big lover of tech and gadgets MP3 players are a fantastic invention but eBook readers just seem unnecessary.
Not to mention the good old romance of a book and who wants to sit by the pool with an eBook reader gah!!!
"Two words. Jonathan and Ive."
Two words for you, Apple and TV. The fact that Apple have an excellent industrial designer does not mean the product will sell well. This site is riddled with fanbois who say, "The iPhone sold well, so this tablet thingy will sell well too." The trouble is, the iPhone entered a market that was well established, and basically built on the existing technology. The iSlate is entering a niche market, and doing so with an under-powered operating system, and (presumably, given that it's Apple) at a high price.
The other guy you mention has been running a computer company on and off for about 30 years and has achieved about 5% market share. He has done well in other areas (personal media players and mobile phones in particular) but holding him up as the reason that the iSlate will succeed is simply myopic fanboi-ism.
How did this become an "everyone shout at Apple" event?
I am pretty sure the article is about Deloitte saying that net tablets will be a big thing this year. Not that the Apple i-arentapropercomputer will be a big thing this year.
Several tablets showed up at CES... none of them Apple products. So clearly lots of manufacturers are thinking that there is a market for the stuff thats been sitting on a shelf in the R&D department for years.
As has been said already, it could just be that the consumer (thats everyone not currently commenting here, by the way) is ready for a tablet computing device. Something multifunctional, lightweight and nice to look at. Even if it only gets used with a screensaver as a digital picture frame after a few weeks of novelty use, i can see loads of these things selling.