In its relatively short history, the tablet has gone from a science-fiction gimmick to an overhyped novelty to a mainstay of mobile communication and business productivity. Not everyone is a tablet fan, of course — and not every situation or task is well served by the tablet's functionality and form factor. Yet the tablet's rise in popularity and adoption as a tool for mobile business users has been phenomenal, thanks in part to BYOD and to increasingly sophisticated design, power, and flexibility.
Research analyst Forrester said that tablets "have hit hyper-growth" and predicts that by 2017, sales worldwide will reach 381 million units—with enterprises accounting for 18 percent of purchases. Definitely a trend to be reckoned with.
This guide from ZDNet and TechRepublic looks at the evolution of tablet computing, how the various platforms and vendors are faring, and what to expect in the years ahead. It also examines some of the ways tablets are being used in the enterprise, how they can enhance business productivity, and where they may fall short.