Why tablets will usurp laptops in 2012

Why tablets will usurp laptops in 2012

Summary: The laptop's long pedigree won't prevent it being replaced as the default tool for mobile workers in 2012, says Jack Wallen

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  • Tablet UI

    7. User-friendliness
    Tablet interfaces are among the user-friendliest desktops available. They are simple, elegant, and don't get in the way of work. I believe — as do Ubuntu and GNOME — that this is the future of the PC desktop. For the most part, tablet applications are also designed with user-friendliness in mind. They are simple to use and there's very little clutter to the interface with no Ribbons to get in the way. So you might have more apps installed than you would on a laptop, but because of the ease of installation and removal, that's not a problem.

    Pictured: the Toshiba Thrive Android tablet.

    Photo credit: Erica Ogg/CNET News

  • Bluetooth device

    8. Bluetooth connectivity
    I have become a keen user of Bluetooth — from headphones and headsets to keyboards. And tablets, unlike laptops, make connecting to these devices easy. Even with a built-in card, the connection process is far harder with a laptop than with a tablet.

    Photo credit: michperu/Flickr

  • Tablet top view

    9. Efficiency
    Getting a laptop out of hibernation is a very different experience to waking up a tablet. Tablets are the closest thing we have to an instant-on computer. And when you're a mobile worker, nothing beats instant-on. If you need to write a note or send a short email, you'll complete the task much more quickly with a tablet.

    Photo credit: David Meyer

Topics: Mobility, Smartphones

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6 comments
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  • Wishful thinking!

    A tablet is an excellent way to absorb content, internet browsing, music, books, movies, tv. etc. But mobile workers (not consumers) need the ability to produce content (documentation, diagrams, reports etc) and for that the tablet is hopeless in its current form. I would bet my house with you that this prediction of yours is nothing but wishful thinking and has no base in reality. We can check that in December this year.
    ndl007
  • Surely all it is missing is a key board, which could be stowed (until needed) in/at/on the back of the tablet.
    Johneavsn7
  • I’m still waiting for a tablet that has proper software, security and interoperability with my other systems and services. I have high hopes for Windows 8. However in any case I can’t see a tablet taking over my notebook just as I don’t see my notebook replacing my desktop. They serve different purposes and situations. A tablet to me would be a supplementary device for data consumption, web browsing and synchronisation, etc. I’m never going to do any serious work on a tablet unless I add various devices to it that effectively make it a notebook. I look forward to developments in 2012/3 and hope someone finally brings out the tablet I am waiting for!
    smunden-9c21e
  • I think in 2012 tablets will gain missing features. Currently I consider tablets a rough but interesting concept, far from improve productivity at a sustentable cost. Talking about portability, connections and productivity, I do prefer 10''-12'' screen netbooks with 6-9 cells battery and SSD storage, with wi-fi/3g/bluetooth.
    Almost of tablets can run same tasks (and they have same caracteristics) as laptops but in a more expensive and in a not-so-solid way. In counterpart, tablets PROs are evident... and will be more evident in the future.
    massimocolaceci
  • I find it interesting to note that the majority of reasons given in favour of the tablet, aren't tablet specific per se, they are attributes that could be implemented on other devices such as notebooks.

    The key attribute of the tablet (and e-readers) is their size which in partnership with instant on, allows them to be kept close to hand and enables and encourages ad-hoc usage, in circumstances that can be problemmatic with a traditional clamshell notebook/netbook.

    So yes I now pack a tablet along with my notebook and for on-the-move lookups use the tablet; leaving the notebook to be used when I am doing substantive work.

    What I have also found, is that the tablet has enabled me to revert to a smaller and more pocket friendly phone, as many of the functions I used to perform on the smartphone I find are easier on the tablet.
    bellrm
  • @ndl007 is right, "mobile workers ... need the ability to produce content". I think that a tablet *with a keyboard* might be a step in the right direction. You could call it a laptop ;)
    Jake Rayson