“Apple recently stated that it sold 15 million iPad tablet computers in 2010. With competition rising from the Google Android ecosystem, the upcoming BlackBerry Playbook, and surely from Microsoft, too, it’s easy to believe tablets are the future dominant form of mobile computing,” Evan Koblentz writes for Minyanville. “But you’d be wrong.”
“Tablets as we know them will remain hot for a couple of years, and then will fade away, forever marginalized into niche status,” Koblentz writes. “Price, size, and historic trends are the reasons why.”
“There are two ways tablet vendors can break their historic cycle of failure and keep the tablet experience alive. First, tablets’ best features such as multitouch screens could be incorporated into laptops with either fold-under or slider-style keyboards, resulting in a converged portable computer that some buyers may find more useful,” Koblentz writes. “Second, smartphones could be designed to unfold into tablets — the new dual-screen Kyocera Echo does just this– thereby retaining pocket size, smartphone price, and a more enjoyable viewing experience.”
Read more in the full article here.
MacDailyNews Take: Unsurprisingly, historians are always looking backwards. This tends to produce some seriously stuck-in-the-box thinking. It also might explain why this article, published today, reads as if it’s years old. Koblentz’s big mistake is obvious: Using Microsoft’s and others’ impressive string of failures to predict the future of a different market created by Apple Inc.
Apple fully understands the history of tablet computing. That’s why they broke from it and are therefore not doomed to repeat it.
Mr. Koblentz, you’ve just been iCal’ed. We’ll return annually to revisit this article and see how it compares to reality. In the meantime, go get yourself an iPad, you sound like you’ve never touched one.
Apple CEO Steve Jobs, right after unveiling iPad 2 on March 2, 2011:
I’ve said this before, but thought it was worth repeating: It’s in Apple’s DNA that technology alone is not enough. That it’s technology married with liberal arts, married with the humanities, that yields us the result that makes our hearts sing.
And nowhere is that more true than in these post-PC devices.
And a lot of folks in this tablet market are rushing in and they’re looking at this as the next PC. The hardware and the software are done by different companies. And they’re talking about speeds and feeds just like they did with PCs.
And our experience and every bone in our body says that that is not the right approach to this. That these are post-PC devices that need to be even easier to use than a PC. That need to be even more intuitive than a PC. And where the software and the hardware and the applications need to intertwine in an even more seamless way than they do on a PC.
And we think we’re on the right track with this. We think we have the right architecture not just in silicon, but in the organization to build these kinds of products.
And so I think we stand a pretty good chance of being pretty competitive in this market. And I hope that what you’ve seen today gives you a good feel for that.