Gadget Freaks and Jobians (If it were a religion you know Steve Jobs would be God) might fondly remember the highly publicized interview with Bill Gates and Steve Jobs at the All Things Digital 5 conference in 2007 in about an hour or so the greatest minds of the computing world almost casually predicted the future of the computing world.
Be it the rise of cloud, the rise of Android and fragmentation of the OS market or most importantly the birth of the Tablet and its rise to becoming the second most popular computing device.
Half a decade later, Tablets have changed the way humans experience personal computing and content consumption. It has changed the publishing industry, the gaming industry and it’s already on its way revolutionizing social networking and television industries.
June brought with it a flurry of activity from the big guns such as Apple, Microsoft and now Google. With the launch of Microsoft Surface and Google Nexus 7 we are now entering exciting times for the Tablet. Tablet industry is headed for interesting times mainly for these reasons;
Microsoft Surface – Content consumption to Content creation
The biggest challenge that tablets face is the acceptance of it by the large chunk of content creators. If I have a large enough smartphone to view videos and play games and communicate and network and I still need to code, write content or design on my Desktop computer or Laptop, why would I need a Tablet PC?
The common perception of Tablets is that it’s just to watch videos or read books while travelling. Microsoft Surface, mainly its sleek new cover with touch sensitive keypad is going to change the way people use a tablet. Be it for typing out long mails and create presentations or even to code out software.
Surface has pushed the Tablet from Content Consumption to Content Creation. Maybe all offices would need now are giant LCD monitors and a hub for users to connect their Surface to. Windows 8 would make seamless interconnection between communication devices possible and with it the rise of Tablets.
A large population of desktop PC users are still looking for a way to work more effectively as well as for better mobile entertainment. With their tablets, smartphones and desktop PCs still performing on independent ecosystems, the true challenge is to integrate three… enter Windows 8 Pro, Windows RT and Windows Phone 8.
Google Nexus 7 and a paradigm shift in the leaders table
Apple has dominated the tablet market for nearly 3 years and there seems no end to this dominion. However, with the launch of the Amazon Kindle fire and Nook, the folks at Cupertino have found themselves in a hotly contested battle. The leaders table have not changed for a while-Until Now.
Google Nexus 7 and its sleek new Jelly Bean operating system may not hit directly at the iPad but it will surely hurt the sales of the Kindle Fire and even few other Android tablets. At convenient pricing of $199 (expected to be around Rs 11000 in India) the tablet should be in the shopping lists of most people in the coming holidays.
Nexus 7 should be a more attractive offer than the Kindle unless of course some of the prominent Android players such as Samsung come out with a cheaper alternative to the Galaxy Tab. It seems the proliferation of tablets seem inevitable and would surely cause the change in toppers table.
Low price Tablets for everyone
It started with the Adam and moved onto the Aakash, Low price tablets in India are gaining attention world-wide. Tablets at affordable rates seemed unlikely for something that’s barely a decade old. But today Tablets are breaking price barriers and entering entirely new customer ranges.
From students to healthcare and restaurants, everyone is going for the slate for Content consumption. Micromax and Karbonn and even HCL have churned out low price tablets running the Ice Cream Sandwich with just enough specifications and features to keep the light user happy. With the launch of Nexus 7 and what we can only expect to be a barrage of low cost Ice Cream sandwich and Jelly Bean tablets in the coming months, the price barrier of Tablets is falling fast.
Clearly Tablets are set to replace the book, the restaurant menu and the health chart in days to come.
2012 may turn out to be the year of the Tablet. The events of June have shown the high intent of the big guns in boosting the Tablet PC as the computing device of the future. Cheaper tablets, Content Creation and seamless integration with other computing devices would greatly help the Tablet PC beat the Desktop PC.
Comments are welcome…
[About the Author: Ashwin Sreekumar heads Marketing at MySmartprice and is an MS graduate from State University of New York, University at Buffalo. He has avid interest in eCommerce, marketing , technology and smartphones.]