It's an undisputed fact that the popularity of tablets, tablet computers, or tablet PCs, has exploded over recent years and one thing is guaranteed - they're here to stay! So, what are tablet PCs? Is it all hype? What can they do? Which is the best in the market today? Are you thinking of buying a tablet PC and aren't sure which one to buy; or don't know whether a tablet will suit your needs?
Since the launch of the Apple iPad in 2010, the tablet PC market has exploded. This increase in choice is great for consumers but it can also present a headache for the non-technical savvy consumer looking to buy their first tablet. Well don't worry, Tablets.co.uk provides the answers!
Tablet PCs have been around for a number of years, really starting life in the form of personal digital assistants (PDAs), such as Apple's Newton and the Palm Pilot. In fact, did you know that a modern digital computer, employing handwriting text recognition, instead of a keyboard, was first demonstrated in 1956! Early devices relied upon input using a pen-like stylus and had small screens. Take-up was significant and, eventually, they influenced the design of the Apple, Windows and Android smartphones we see today, which represent the convergence of PDA functionality with the other device most of carry everywhere, the mobile phone.
Tablets as we know them today, characterised by a larger screen and no keyboard, emerged in 2002, when Microsoft released its Tablet PC. These devices still relied upon the stylus as an input device, however, and ran scaled-down versions of PC operating systems. Demand, whilst not insignificant, was not huge, representing a niche market.
So what changed? The breakthrough came in 2010, when Apple overcame the limitations of the stylus as an input device, designing the iPad, which uses Apple's 'multi-touch' technology to allow the user to input using their fingers. Coupled with IOS, the operating system Apple introduced with the iPhone, and tight integration with its online App Store and iTunes Store, Apple found the winning formula. The rest is history - Apple had sold more than 25 million iPads by June 2011.
Tablets from other manufacturers have now hit the shelves, as companies such as Google seek to break Apple's stranglehold on the tablet PC market. Visit our tablet reviews pages to learn more about the tablets available in the market today.