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The Tablet Is the New King of Mobile Computing

Is the laptop becoming less attractive?

I am now only a few days away from speaking at a Sybase Nordic Roadshow, within the Mobility track and will once again be traveling light with just my iPad to use. So I thought it would be time to address the though of... 'Is the Laptop Becoming Less Attractive?'.

I recently read a report that stated, that one in four Americans surveyed are likely to replace their laptop with a tablet device for work or personal use. I think, that as we see more mobile tablet devices, we will see that survey number increase. Even SAP's CIO Oliver Bussmann announced in the WSJ that SAP think that “We believe the tablet is a business tool”. The WSJ article also stated...

"Waldorf-based SAP has been quick to capitalize on the freedom tablets afford. The company bought 1,500 iPads for its sales, marketing, and development teams"

My colleague Eric Lai confirmed these facts in an article here, then a few days later Eric reported that SAP could have as many as 17,000 iPads running inside SAP within 12 months. See here

These are the reason why I think these devices are becoming hot stuff and making laptops less attractive to leave the confines of the home/office...

  1. The world is becoming a mobile place and even if you are not a mobile worker in your daily job, you will want to interact whilst on the move, in your personal life. That is why the Smartphone, such as the iPhone, is such a success... It gives you access to everything you want in the palm or your hand.
  2. They are compact and super easy to transport, the clue is in the word Mobility, but tablets also open up a wider range of applications that just do not make sense on small screens.
  3. They are easier to maintain and by that I mean that devices like the iPad just run applications specifically written for individual tasks and do not allow much (compared to a desktop) 'customisation'.
  4. They are touch screen and so the interaction paradigm is very native to us all. We are interacting with the device rather than peripherals. I always think of Minority Report with Tom Cruise.
  5. They are super cool. The hardware and the applications will lead to innovative and surprising uses.

Tablets for successSome may say that Tablet Devices will become our 3rd device behind the Laptop and the Mobile and I would partially agree with that statement providing one thing...The Laptop is the new Desktop and the Tablet is the new King of Mobile Computing

For me its MacBook Pro, iPhone and iPad. I believe the tablet devices and especially Apple's iPad is here to stay and usage/demand will grow... Do not take my word for it check out recent report from iSuppli here with regard to iPad sales.

More Stories By Ian Thain

As one of the Sybase Technical Evangelists, Ian regularly addresses technical audiences all over the world and his sessions are always very well attended. He also writes education classes, whitepapers, demos and articles for various Sybase products and publishes regularly in Journals such as SYS-CON's PBDJ and International Developer Magazine. He is also the Sybase Unwired Platform & PocketBuilder Evangelist and works closely with the team in Dublin, CA and Concord, MA on new features and demonstrations for the products. In his customer-facing Evangelist role, Ian is very involved with the design, production and testing of Enterprise class Unwired Solutions, that have been implemented using Sybase's Unwired tools for Sybase customers around the globe. In addition, Ian is a dedicated technical expert continually working with Sybase's key partners and clients to enhance the capabilities of the Unwired solutions that Sybase can offer to its customers. Ian can also be found on Twitter @ithain

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