Saturday, March 12, 2011

More Windows Tablets please!

Thanks to Apple’s iPad and Samsung’s Galaxy Tab Android tablet, everyone has since forgotten the Windows-based tablets. The industry seems to have headed in the wrong direction. Instead of a mixed culture of complexity and simplicity, the tablet manufacturers as a whole, seem to want to have complete simplicity. The obvious question that just has to be asked is, ‘Have they forgotten the geeks?’ The iPad has made things simple and I do not believe that is necessarily a bad thing, but if we eliminate complexity altogether, then we as consumers, will not have choice. That, I believe, is a dangerous idea!

The key to all this is choice! Prior to the iPad, the Galaxy Tab, and all the Android tablets, Windows on a tablet was the only choice. Therefore, the industry should not go back to that period in time, but rather, we should proceed forward and allow for choice. Apple and all these Android tablet makers want to eliminate Windows tablets. This eliminates choice and that does not benefit the consumers in any way, shape, or form.

I understand that the manufacturers do not want freedom of choice because they want consumers to rely solely on their platform, rather than a few different platforms for computing. It makes them more profitable and hurts their competition. That is what concerns me the most! Competition is good for the technology industry but of course, those tablet makers don’t want competition!

Besides the fact of choice and competition, Windows tablets allow people to ease into the transition from desktop computing to mobile computing. Yes, it is a very slow transition, but over time those will see that mobile computing is a benefit to them. In the meantime, Windows tablets give you the power of Windows, such as the application infrastructure and the power of a full desktop operating system, while introducing people to multitouch. Although, multitouch is not quite as intuitive on a Windows tablet, it still works. Especially with Windows 7, in which some of the major apps have been redesigned from the ground up for multitouch computing. Use Microsoft’s OneNote as an example, which is part of Microsoft’s Office productivity suite. Their latest version, OneNote 2010, has intuitive multitouch support. It supports hand recognition, which operates fairly well without difficulty, and supports hand drawings, whether you’re using a stylus or your fingers. The experience of using OneNote 2010 will be one that anyone can enjoy. The beauty of a Windows 7 based tablet is that it can serve a great number of purposes, such as productivity and entertainment. You can enjoy a movie and flip the screen around (if the hardware permits) and quickly flip it back to normal position when you’re done to swiftly transition back into productivity. It serves the best of many worlds! It combines multiple products into one, which is why I prefer a Windows 7 tablet over an iOS or Android tablet.

Sure you can’t all the great multi-touch applications and games that you can with Android and iOS, but for me and I know for a lot of other people, they’re fine with that. In a bad economy, people cannot afford to buy a one-purpose product. In fact, you could buy a Windows 7 tablet for around the same price range as an Apple iPad or a Samsung Galaxy Tab. Some Windows 7 tablets are actually cheaper than a Samsung Galaxy Tab.

So maybe a Windows 7 tablet is not for everyone. But it would benefit a lot of consumers, more than an iPad or Galaxy Tab would. It combines some great features of the Android and iOS tablets, with the benefits of Windows and a desktop computing platform.

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