There are three central key points as to why tablets and touch technology, in the form of slate devices, including the iPad, are not designed for the student market yet.
1. Tablets are too expensive. Though the Generation Y have one of the highest levels of expendable income, students and the like are still conscientious consumers and find it difficult to part their cash with devices without a killer feature. Why trade in a MacBook for an iPad when they offer vastly the same function, with if anything a more limited hardware capacity?
2. Not around long enough for a decent judgement call. These devices are still new, and the younger generation appreciate new technology and still want to get their hands on these trendsetting devices. Yet physically parting with hard earned (or parent-pushed) money on devices that have yet been tried and tested in industry will be too risky for younger consumers.
Again, the dust needs to settle in the market to allow the weak tablets to fail and thus filtering the better devices to the top.
Tablets are not devices for productivity. My tx2 multi-touch laptop has a keyboard, used extensively over the touch-screen functions, whereas when using an iPad, the browsing functionality is perfect with an interface designed with touch in mind.
But browsing only offers a fraction of the overall story. The iPad for all it is worth, just to take a more popular example of tablet devices on the market, still punches above its weight with a starting price for $499. The productive student won't even break the $300 mark if they cannot use a device for actual work, instead of the fun features that tablets and slates offers. A netbook, therefore, is still the more tempting option, even if they are lumbered with an operating system they do not prefer.
Would a hybrid device tempt you over a netbook or a tablet?