iPad, TouchPad, Xoom and Playbook: Choices galore and nothing but time

iPad, TouchPad, Xoom and Playbook: Choices galore and nothing but time

Summary: When it comes to this new competitive landscape in tablet computing, the one question you should ask yourself is: Do you really need to buy a tablet computer today?OK, maybe YOU do.

SHARE:

When it comes to this new competitive landscape in tablet computing, the one question you should ask yourself is: Do you really need to buy a tablet computer today?

OK, maybe YOU do. But for the rest of us, there is no rush to get out there and pick up a tablet computer. Oh sure, maybe your laptop is on its last legs and you're considering buying a tablet as a notebook replacement. Maybe your company has freed up its PC budget and wants to know if a tablet is a viable option. Maybe you're planning a extended vacation and would like to pick up a device that will allow you to play games, watch movies, read books and check your email.

But does anyone really NEED a tablet today?

HP TouchPad

HP TouchPad

I ask the question in response to Larry Dignan's post that carried the headline: "HP's TouchPad: No price, no deal and no interest. I know where Larry is coming from - I, too, have been eyeing the tablet space and have been waiting to see what others would offer.  At this point, I now know what RIM has in the works for the Playbook. I know what Motorola is stirring up with Android 3 in the Xoom. And now I know what HP is doing with Palm's WebOS to differentiate the TouchPad from the others.

Larry and I have both been banging that "Price is everything" drum for some time now - and I don't expect that to stop anytime soon. But it hit me this morning when I read his post that I now have almost everything I need - other than the price tag - to start figuring out which tablet will make sense for me. Just because HP didn't put a price tag on its tablet yesterday doesn't mean that I'm not interested.

So what if I don't have all of the information I need until summer - even late summer. Around that time, I could be shopping for something for the kids before the start of the school year. And by then, I'll know exactly what's available. Even the iPad2 will be out by then.

Here's the way I see it: There are choices galore coming down the pipeline and for those who want to make educated purchases and buy the product that best suits their specific needs, it's only smart to wait a few more months and see what everyone is offering.

In a sense, I'm forcing the tablet makers to compete for my money - compete on features, form factor, engineering and, of course, price.

When I think about it that way, the real winner in this tablet race is me.

Topics: Laptops, Hardware, iPad, Mobility, Tablets

Kick off your day with ZDNet's daily email newsletter. It's the freshest tech news and opinion, served hot. Get it.

Talkback

61 comments
Log in or register to join the discussion
  • RE: iPad, TouchPad, Xoom and Playbook: Choices galore and nothing but time

    I am reading this and I can't stop thinking about Bill Gates. He is probably going crazy. How Microsoft miss this opportunity.
    eboraks
    • RE: iPad, TouchPad, Xoom and Playbook: Choices galore and nothing but time

      @eboraks No, no, no...Loverock says tablets are just a fad. At least until Microsoft finally has a tablet out, ...then its not.
      I12BPhil
      • RE: iPad, TouchPad, Xoom and Playbook: Choices galore and nothing but time

        @I12BPhil Yeah.... I second what John Zern said. Just correct the spelling and he's right. Before iFad.... Microsoft had Origami slates. It's just that the timing was just before the Great Depression!!!
        i2fun@...
      • Microsoft Tablets

        @I12BPhil

        They were working on a tablet known as "Courier" and killed it.
        Mihi Nomen Est
    • You would think Gates would be kicking Ballmer in the butt

      seeing that in an inteview like 5or 6 years ago Gates was saying how tablets would become another form factor that people would be interesetde in.
      John Zern
    • Yeah...I'm sure Bill is worried...

      @eboraks

      He's got, what... $85 billion personally.

      Yeah, I'm sure he's upset.
      trickytom3
  • You are just.....

    too rational. I guess that is why I like most of your blogs. :-)
    Economister
    • RE: iPad, TouchPad, Xoom and Playbook: Choices galore and nothing but time

      @Economister :-) Thanks...
      sldiaz
  • Only one choice...

    ...iPad, the rest are tourists.
    james347
    • Not blessed with much rational thought

      @james347

      Rejecting products out of hand before you even know much about them must be pretty much the ultimate in mindless fanboyism.

      Pretty pathetic really
      Economister
      • A lot of know, including the main thing: **no apps** for me-toos

        @Economister: <b>a rational person would choose iPad for that reason alone.</b>

        However, some anti-Apple religious fanatics may go blind and deny the obvious, so they will go torture themselves on these copycat/trade-dress-infringement devices with theirs applications deserts.
        DDERSSS
      • Ditto my first reply (nt)

        @denisrs

        nt
        Economister
      • RE: iPad, TouchPad, Xoom and Playbook: Choices galore and nothing but time

        @Economister
        I agree. Statements such as those of the OP attempt to imply that only one device is suitable for all needs. Different people have different needs. I have an iPad and love it, but I would never suggest that it is the best device for everyone.
        Wakemewhentrollsgone
      • @denisrs - Android market is no apps? Huh?

        @denisrs - can you explain what you mean in saying there are no apps for me-toos? Angry Birds and Skype/Fring and Goggles and basically all the other Android apps run fine on Android tablets, as well as HTML5 and Flash apps on the web. I don't know about webOS. but certainly the Android "me-toos" have plenty. ?
        daboochmeister
    • Cash another check there, james347?

      ;)
      John Zern
    • RE: iPad, TouchPad, Xoom and Playbook: Choices galore and nothing but time

      @james347 haha.... yeah right... it's the CrApple iFad... STUPID. Another iCrAppleholic drunk in public again!!! lol.... better lay off the RDF (Reality Distortion Field) spiked CrApple Juice!!!
      i2fun@...
      • RE: iPad, TouchPad, Xoom and Playbook: Choices galore and nothing but time

        @i2fun@... Every intelligent argument you've ever attempted to make has been completely negated by this post. You've EARNED this PWNIE award, make sure you place it upon your mantle in a spot where you can show it off to friends and family.
        nix_hed
      • RE: iPad, TouchPad, Xoom and Playbook: Choices galore and nothing but time

        @nix_hed Can't take a joke..... eh? haha.... but no thank you, I've got enough iPWNEDU Awards to last a life time! lol... :D .....psst, you're looking cross eyed. Maybe you've overdosed on RDF spiked CrApple Juice?
        i2fun@...
  • RE: iPad, TouchPad, Xoom and Playbook: Choices galore and nothing but time

    Good to see many entrants into the game. Unfortunately it is not a game I am interested in playing. I don?t need an iPad, or any of the other devices. But it?s good to see them compete on merit.
    Rick_K
  • RE: iPad, TouchPad, Xoom and Playbook: Choices galore and nothing but time

    Choices?

    What choices? The only thing out of those mentioned I can buy tomorrow is an iPad.
    kitko