Originally Posted by dmaul1114
Those are Tablet PCs. I don't want a tablet PC. I want something about the size of a legal pad (will have to be a heaver of course) with no keyboard etc. bulking it down.
And I want it to read and mark up academic PDFs as the primary function. Currently I print them out, mark them up and file them away, only to pull them out when needing to cite them in an article I'm writing or a class lecture etc.
How would you do this? What form would the markups take? What software would you use?
With a tablet I could do that electronically. Possibly a large screen e-ink device with stylus--like the forthcoming Que--could work. But the displays would have to speed up as I have a need to flip through documents quickly to find tables,figures etc. And the other limit is such devices seem to run $500-1000 which is a bit high for something I'd just use a handful of hours a month.
So a future multi-media tablet that could do that, and replace my PDA, surf the net, display video etc--without being as big and bulky as a full fledged Tablet PC--would be more worth dropping that kind of money.
So why I haven't used one is such a device doesn't exist and is probably a ways off from having one that's functional and under $1,000.
I'd say it's quite a ways off. Your application is one use case, but how many other people really want to do that? Offhand, not enough to justify the investment needed to produce something that can do it.
Tablets remind me a bit of the UMPCs that were getting buzz a couple of years ago. The were outgrowths of the Microsoft Origami project, and pushed by MS and Intel.
Both had a similar problem: where would growth come from? Just about everything that can
run Windows and Office, does. Vista wasn't out at the time. MS was trying to figure out where to get significant revenue and profit growth, and keep their stock price in the stratosphere. Intel had similar concerns, with AMD encroaching on their market share.
What to do? A whole new platform that would use Intel chips and run Windows - the UMPC.
Unfortunately, this was driven by corporate need for revenues and growth, not customer requirements, and the one thing MS and Intel never could provide was a compelling use case. Just what would the user do
with a UMPC that they couldn't do with a desktop, laptop, or notebook (and these days, netbook)? Nothing, really, which is why they never became more than a niche market item.
I feel the same about tablets. What will you do with a tablet that you can't do with other things? I can see plenty of specialized uses for a device with a reasonably large touch screen for things where you can
just tap or swipe, like checkbox forms, but too many applications still require data entry, which means a keyboard of some sort or dealing with handwriting recognition.
It's possible I'm missing the obvious, and if Apple does release a tablet, I'll be fascinated to see what they claim the uses will be.
(Thinking about it, I can see one: the YouTubelet, anyone?