Friday, June 22, 2012

The Tablet Holy Grail?

I’m a PC.  That doesn’t mean I’m an Apple hater nor am I a Microsoft fanatic.  Simply put, it’s the platform that allows me to make a living  and it’s where I’m comfortable.

I’ve been intrigued by the tablet space for a long time and have been biding my time.  Long ago in my career I worked on a Toshiba tablet PC; a full blown laptop with a tiny 9” swivel touch screen.  It didn’t last long.  While the form factor and portability were great, the touch experience back then coupled with the meager screen real estate had me trading up shortly after the novelty wore off.

Fast forward several years and the reasons for this sexy form factor have changed very little for me.  Like every other tablet toting technophile, I’m a big consumer of digital content and tablets fit that niche perfectly.  My wife has an iPad and we have another “community use” lower end Android tablet to help manage daily life in the Schram household.  Both work well for browsing the web and reading digital books.  So why then am I so excited about the announcement of the Microsoft Surface?

In a word – productivity.  I’ve personally really struggled with what I call the “price-to-productivity” ratio.  If I’m going to spend as much or more money as I paid for my high-end entertainment laptop, then I expect more than just a sexy form factor that can surf the web or run countless time-wasting games or limited function apps.  If I’m going to spend enough to buy a high end laptop, then the device ought to have the functionality to replace the need for a high end laptop.  At first glance, the Microsoft Surface running Windows 8 Pro looks like a contender.  It will be interesting to watch things develop.

Do you own a tablet?  How has it changed the way you work and play?


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