Sunday, 5 June 2011

Why should you buy a tablet? Part 2

Last week we talked about the reasons why tablets do not have a purpose or a reason to be in your travel bag. Yet there are some exceptional and innovative things done by some companies which need to be mentioned. If not these devices themselves, their concepts and ideas atleast push and take this segment in a new direction. Maybe second or third generation versions of these devices will take usability to a new level or provide them with real purpose. Yet even buying them right now is not a bad bet either, provided you can live with these beta versions.

1) Motorola Atrix.

A phone docked in a laptop powering the laptop itself.Atrix allows you to send messages, surf online and everything from the laptop dock. It actually opens your phone itself in a window. You can use all the applications from the mobile on the laptop dock itself. Motorola has fixed up a Linux based OS for this laptop. The phone is the powerhouse and processor of the laptop.One major addition and plus point to this laptop dock is that while the phone is docked in, the laptop has its own battery and it actually charges the phone itself, so powering the laptop does not drain the phone out. A drawback being, once the phone is removed from the laptop it becomes like dead piece of plastic. The phone is like the all spark from transformers. It brings the laptop to life.Also its really difficult to understand why motorola did not just load the chrome OS on the laptop, rather now people are stuck with this firefox based OS. You can check out the full review on ENGADGET and CNET.

2) Asus EEE Pad Transformer

 Asus, not many people know much about this company. Even if they know about them, people do not know how good the company has been coming through lately. Well the next couple of devices by them are going to grab eyeballs for sure. Starting with the EEE Pad transformer. At first glance it seems like a normal tablet, rather it feels a little plastic-ky and cheaper version of those other shiny ones. BUT again, this is where Asus comes through. Transformer comes with Honeycomb out of the box, and compared to Motorola Xoom, this ones way cheaper. And to top that, Asus provides you an option of buying this keyboard dock which still is cheaper than Xoom. Asus has really gone out of its way to make this keyboard dock feel really good and sturdy, with two finger scrolling included. It has its own battery and hence charges the tablet when docked. Demand for this tablet has been exceptionally high, so much so that its completely sold out in US and some areas of Europe. Asus did not anticipate such demand for it. This in itself shows you that consumers know how important it is to solve the input problem. (mentioned in the last blog too) You can go through its reviews on ANANDTECH and CNET.
The company really needs to work on its ad-campaign though.

3) Asus Padfone
Now this is a concept everyone is really excited about. Asus unveiled the padfone at Computex,2011 in Taipei. This concept makes a lot of sense. Firstly you do not need to have two data connections, one for your tablet and the other one for your phone. You will not give up your phone connection and there is no use of a tablet if you are not going for a 3g version, otherwise the "on the go" device will become a simple PMP and nothing else "on the go". You just plug the phone in a compartment as shown, and the tablet comes to life. One major difference between this and the Atrix discussed above is that the phone in this case in incorporated in the design of the tablet itself. Once docked you can use the tablet without any hindrance. Another advantage being that the tablet and the phone have the same memory. So anything downloaded and being worked upon on the tablet can be resumed where left on the phone itself. Again the dock charges the phone when plugged in. This can really lessen the divide and need for two devices. It makes more sense having padfone than two different devices (phone and a stand alone tablet), The only dark lining in this silver cloud is that its expected to be released during the christmas season. So now you know what you want from Santa this year! Check out more details on ENGADGET

4) Kyochera Echo.

If these pictures do not grab your eyeballs. What will!?!?! What is about these unheard of companies who take such risks?! Kyochera Echo is another example of going radical, of being fearless in design and implementation. This is a phone which can transform into a phone/tablet. Its dual 3.5" screens change the whole dimension of this device. Its bulky, its software has issues, but its geeky to the very core. Kyochera has actually taken some really good efforts to try and make use of the dual screen to the best they can. This again seems like a beta device. It seems like a work-in-progress. The bezel of the screens becomes a hindrance, the processor sometimes is not powerful enough to 
handle both screens. The battery again is an issue because of the two WVGA touch panels. First look, it seems just like another touch phone and then when you push open the second screen, the gameball changes altogether. Packing Android Froyo (2.2) and a custom layer over it, this beast has its own cult following. Even though its a phone, it definitely is breaching and threatening the tablet territory. Review by ENGADGET.

5) Microsoft Windows 8!
Yes you read right Your windows 7 is going to become a has-been quite soon. Microsoft just previewed its much talked and hyped about WINDOWS 8. Even though its not a device itself, but you will understand there is no way i can skip mentioning it. Windows 8 is going to be touch friendly, its going to be tablet friendly. One of the biggest companies to stay out of the tablet market has finally started to make its push. It was a smart move to just not jump on the tablet bandwagon. Windows 7 is not a touch based OS from ground up, there was no point in trying to make it so. The question now though is did they wait too long? Did Microsoft take too long? Its going to be really difficult to see a Windows 8 device this year. I will let the video takeover.

Now do you see how important  tablets are going to be? Now do you see that there is more to this market than the Galaxies and the iPads? This is just the beginning of the tablet era. I would advice you to hold on to your laptops and PCs for a little while longer, and if you still are hellbent on buying one, you should really give the ones mentioned above a serious thought.

News Box
1) Acer Hacked!!! Hackers holding a press conference!!
2)PlayStation Network back online!! Gaming Orgies resume!!
3) Syria switches off Internet. Facebookers join the protests!!
4)Blackberry Torch 2 previewed!! Let there be light?!
5) Lara Croft teases with a re-imagined video.(Angelina Jolie fans stay out of this, its going to be messy)

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