K-Mart recently announced that it is selling Android powered Tablet computer with 256MB of RAM (same as iPad), 2GB of storage, SD card slot, WiFi 802.11G and Android 2.1 OS with 800×480 display for $149. A host of other Tablet PCs powered by Google’s Android OS are also slated to be released in the near future (for more, see this link). This comes in the wake of runaway success of Apple‘s Tablet computer called iPad. So what does this Tablet Revolution mean to consumers and the tech sector? [pullquote] Microsoft’s dominance of PC (personal computer) market is under threat as many customers are buying Apple iOS or Android OS powered Tablet computers in lieu of a Windows OS notebooks or desktops that they may have purchased otherwise. [/pullquote]
First and foremost, it means Microsoft’s dominance of PC (personal computer) market is under threat as many customers are buying Apple iOS or Android OS powered Tablet computers in lieu of a Windows OS notebooks or desktops that they may have purchased otherwise. Microsoft Chief Executive Officer Steve Ballmer recently said that “Microsoft is urgently working with its partners to unveil a host of tablet computers running Windows 7, to compete with Apple’s fast-selling iPad” (for more, see this link). Competition among Apple, Google and Microsoft for share of Tablet OS market is great news for consumers as this will drive innovation leading to development of better products at a lower price.
Tablet PCs have the potential to bring about a dramatic shift in the way we use traditional media for entertainment and information. Rather than reading newspaper or magazine for information or watching television for entertainment, increasing number of consumers are likely to use Tablet PCs for accessing digital version of their favorite newspapers, magazines and books, and watch movies or television shows on demand from Tablet PCs.
Many popular Tablet PCs are WiFi/3G enabled and are equipped with microphone (and soon, a front facing video camera if not already) making them a great device for connecting with friends and family members over the internet at a fraction of cost of connecting over phone lines. [pullquote] Tablet PCs, given their large Hi-resolution screen with multi-touch input, Accelerometer sensor for UI and Touch-sensitive controls, have the potential to change the way we use Social Media tools and take Social Networking to a whole new level. [/pullquote]
Tablet PCs, given their large Hi-resolution screen with multi-touch input, Accelerometer sensor for UI and Touch-sensitive controls, have the potential to change the way we use Social Media tools and take Social Networking to a whole new level. Current Social Media tools such as Twitter or Facebook are “text” or “web-page” UI based. NextGen Social Media tools will leverage full range of functionality available in Tablet PCs and make media consumption for information & entertainment or playing online games a truly Social experience.
Most importantly, a fully functional Tablet PC costs just a few hundred dollars, a little more if it is a premium brand like Apple (note the price tag on Android powered Tablet PC I mentioned earlier in this post). And by all accounts, prices are likely to drop further as sales volume increase.
One may argue that a Tablet PC costing few hundred dollars is quite expensive in developing countries where consumers’ purchasing power is a fraction of what it is in developed world. Well, watch the following video to know more about a fully functional Tablet PC developed by Government of India costing mere $35 and they hope to bring it down to $10 (you read it right, $10). Just imagine what a Tablet PC costing mere $35 (or even lower) can do to bridging of the Digital Divide. A Tablet PC revolution indeed!