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Is the iPad the future of computing?

Posted on 31st Dec 2010 at 10:17 by Clive Webster with 147 comments

Clive Webster
You’ll need to bear with me on this one, and not just because this idea struck me after a sleepless long-haul flight. Suggesting that the iPad might be the future of computing needs a heck of a lot of explanation, both in defining my terms and moving beyond the iPad’s current incarnation as a mobile device. As such, if I may, I’ll ask you to give me a little bit of time before inviting your comments, whether they're flames or petitions to sanctify Steve Jobs’ turtle-neck sweater.

Here’s the crux of my thought – imagine a PC that doesn’t fail, yet is cool, fun and easy to use. That’s the iPad, but not in its current form. Even my mother would feel much more at home if her computer still had a keyboard and mouse, as these input devices enable a person to be more productive than mere fingers. Similarly, the iPad's screen needs to be larger than 9.7in if the iPad's going to be a useful computer, rather than a frivolous distraction.

[enter]Is the iPad the future of computing? *Is the iPad the future of computing?
Your next PC? Probably not, but it might be everyone else's[/center]

A larger device based on the iPad is what I’m talking about. You might call it an iPad Maxi, or Apple could call it an iPC (hopefully people will be able to tell the difference between a computer and the publishing house). A device that’s as neat as an iMac, cheaper than a conventional PC and as easy to use as the iPad should have a big future.

Such a device wouldn’t just be useful at home; it would also be great for work. IT managers all over the world would love to deploy PCs that can’t crash, or have dodgy software installed on them. After all, you just need to password-protect or remove the App Store, and you’ll have a locked down system. What's more, your employees would thank you for the cool new PC on their desk, rather than feeling as if they're being treated like children, as many workers do feel about their locked-down work PCs.

While there will always be a market for high-performance systems for gaming, media creation and so on, most people don’t need that level of power. What's more, with ARM delivering ever faster CPUs, a larger, desk-bound iPad PC wouldn’t have to be slow, and Apple could release speed increases yearly, as ARM delivers faster designs.

I can imagine Apple being bold enough to deliver such a system, but it wouldn't have to be an Apple-only deal. The likes of Sony, HP or even Asus could make a similar device based on a modified Android (or even Windows Phone 7) OS. Either way, such a PC could potentially initiate a massive swing in power away from Intel, AMD and Microsoft towards ARM, Apple and possibly Google.

Bearing in mind that any ‘iPC’ device wouldn’t be aimed at enthusiast-level bit-tech readers, but rather the other 80 per cent of PC users, do you think a desktop-based iPad-like PC would make sense? If so, just how much influence do you think it might have?
Tags apple, arm, ipad

147 Comments

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eddtox 31st December 2010, 11:33 Quote
Simplicity, yes, reliability, yes, but I'm not sure the class of os used by the iPad would lend itself to the more serious sort of work a "PC" would be expected to undertake.

One of the first problems they would have to resolve is the lack of a mouse as using a touchscreen on your desk for 8+ hours would result in a serous case of gorilla arm syndrome.
Nexxo 31st December 2010, 11:47 Quote
To answer that question we need to look at how most computing tech is used by most people (=! Geeks R Us). We then get grossly speaking three camps: PCs are used at work, for work. Game consoles are used at home for play. Smartphones are used everywhere for social networking and casual browsing and gaming.

The iPad is a device for the latter, only more so. It will not replace work PCs or game consoles, but for the majority of people who could not care less about consoles and see PCs as something they have to put up with at work, perhaps, but would never let cross the doorstep of their own home, an iPad is just the ticket.

People on this forum struggle to see that, because they use computers for so much more than casual stuff. But the majority of people see computers as capricious, awkward to use and clunky devices. The iPad is simple, reliable and convenient.
MartinTurner 31st December 2010, 12:24 Quote
I experimented in the week before Christmas by only taking my iPad and a bluetooth keyboard into work, instead of my MacBook Pro. Normally I have to connect the MacBook through Remote Desktop to the Windows Terminal Server, since our corporate incarnation of Exchange is too elderly to play well with OS X.
For some reason, the iPad does connect well to Exchange — better, in fact, than our desktop PCs and my Remote Desktop, at least in terms of reliability and functionality.
Needless to say, anything complicated like laying out a document in QuarkXPress had to be done on someone else's machine. The iPad doesn't run Lightroom either. But, then, outside of my department which runs the PR, marketing and graphics for our 2,000-strong organisation, none of the desktop PCs do either. They are exclusively used for Outlook, Word, Powerpoint and Excel, and most of us spend 95% of our time reading documents and giving short email replies, and 5% or less of our time creating documents.
The iPad is a lot easier than a desktop PC for reading documents, plus it doesn't break the unwritten meeting-etiquette when you take it into a Board meeting.
Aside from the stuff that only my team do, I discovered I could live very happily with the iPad, at least for a week, and no desktop. My guess is that the vast majority of my colleagues could do the same.
I'm not sure about it requiring a larger form factor. The ease of scrolling and pinching on the iPad is so good that I didn't miss a big screen for document work. In fact, I rather enjoyed not having all the clutter, though that probably says more about all the extraneous rubbish on a typical Outlook screen than it does about screen size.
A part of me is still geek, and wants only to have machines which I can rebuild by hand, fix when they go wrong, and upgrade whenever I want to. But, seriously, I haven't taken a hard drive enclosure to bits for months, and I haven't swapped out components in a desktop for years. At work, if I tried to do anything of the kind, IT would have me up on charges of breaching their policies and protocols: our machines are so locked down we can't even install WinZip.
The part of me that just wants to get on with the job and work through the technology rather than with the technology loves the iPad. I agree: for most people, a keyboard and mouse equipped iPad is probably all the computer they need.
http://www.martinturner.org.uk
Fruitloaf 31st December 2010, 12:32 Quote
Well I definitely think you're on the right lines. Certainly for a lot of home users the actual need for a full fat PC is not there. Most people word process, email, web browse, watch video, game and store pictures. You're pretty much 90% there already with a good tablet. Throw in some sort of docking station for the mouse, keyboard and maybe a screen and you're probably 95% of the way there today (have a look at the NotionInk Adam for just how close this is).

Business users are still a lot further off though. Firstly they are (a lot) slower to adopt new tech because its a cost to them. However the biggest reason though is apps. Every single business has some sort of specialist app be it financial, management or just part of their core business that they cannot often easily move away from. Its for this reason that although I very often replace the servers in SMBs with Linux ones I have never recommended that switch for desktops. I'm not saying its not going to happen because people are slowly moving things to web based infrastructure but it's going to be a slow move and not for everyone.
wuyanxu 31st December 2010, 12:39 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nexxo
But the majority of people see computers as capricious, awkward to use and clunky devices. The iPad is simple, reliable and convenient.

That is so true. Including the other parts of that post which I didn't quote.

Chatting with my work colleges, who all know their way around a computer being hardware engineers, they say they have hardly touched their home computer for non-work related since getting their smartphones.

For normal computing use, smartphones are almost perfect, only downside is it's screen size, which is fixed by the iPad.

If I'm not so into FPS gaming with keyboard and mice, I would have gotten a console and an iPad.
fingerbob69 31st December 2010, 12:44 Quote
Maybe, but not from Apple. They are just to restrictive interms of what you can and can't use ....software and hardware.

The iPad does strike me as a victory of form over function.
Pete J 31st December 2010, 12:55 Quote
I've been using my brother's iPad for the last week and have to admit it's a pretty neat little device, ideal for web browsing and light document processing. However, for more serious stuff, a mouse and keyboard is still the way forward.

The iPad is also about three times too expensive for what it is.
maximus09 31st December 2010, 12:57 Quote
I think the tablet and mobile market are following a similar pattern to the PC when it first started being adopted socially on a large scale. bear with me.

The PC was introduced in the early 80s and got adopted to use mainly for work purposes. There were games but not nearly as much as these days, and there was bearly any video capability. It then went through a phase of "Multimedia" branded advertising and hardware slogans as PCs got more distrubuted throughout people homes. The hardware became better with a focus on video and gaming, more power = more pleasure.

The tablet market has started off with this multimedia aspect e.g. video and gaming + browsing. And I am sure it will adopt the further "work computer" aspect too. It still has to develop more in terms of software, but all the hardware is there and ready and I am sure that in some specialised industries they actually use tablet PCs with specific software for their work.

People already use laptops and notebooks for work and lug them around with them. It is a great idea to have a more compact device that can also be used for work, the only aspect that needs more work is portable peripherals such as folderable keyboards which already exist.

Finally ther other barrier is the closed system of the iPad. This wont be a problem with specialised software taylored for specific jobs but for jobs that require more function then just "click on this app" the OS needs to incorporate a filing system.
docodine 31st December 2010, 13:04 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by fingerbob69
Maybe, but not from Apple. They are just to restrictive interms of what you can and can't use ....software and hardware.

The iPad does strike me as a victory of form over function.

But the entire point of the iPad is not having to worry about your hardware or software, there's no messing around with the device, it just works.
Fingers66 31st December 2010, 13:09 Quote
One other catch is for anyone with kids. My boy uses a PC or laptop at home for educational stuff, some of it communicated through his school.

Whilst I am sure there are educational things you can access with an iPad, I am not so sure it is flexible enough to cope with the things he needs to do. The mouse and keyboard are required here.

In addition, an awful lot of people use a PC at work and I am fairly sure that even more people will need to in future. Learning to use a PC, keyboard and mouse is now a key facet of work experience. I am not sure that knowing how to use an iPad will be considered a must-have skill by most prospective employers.
mi1ez 31st December 2010, 13:19 Quote
Quote:
A device that’s as neat as an iMac, cheaper than a conventional PC and as easy to use as the iPad should have a big future.
Forgive me if I'm wrong, but the iPad is more expensive than the sort of PC most people would be content with?

All in all though, an interesting concept and definitely one with some merit.
Nexxo 31st December 2010, 13:41 Quote
There are many myths surrounding the computer industry. Fanbois tend to wage great religious wars over them.

Some myths around the iPad:
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pete J
The iPad is also about three times too expensive for what it is.
If that is so, why has no competitor brought out an equally specced tablet for less money --especially if those specs are so poor, as many people argue? Every attempt to underprice the iPad has been accompanied by a cut in quality, such as a smaller screen, a poorer quality touch screen, inferior use of materials, a more limited battery life. Strangely enough, the inclusion of features the absence of which is lamented on the iPad, such as USB ports, SD cards and cameras does not seem to make them any more compelling.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fingers66
Whilst I am sure there are educational things you can access with an iPad, I am not so sure it is flexible enough to cope with the things he needs to do.
There is already a booming market in educational apps, and some of them are already going way beyond what is available on the PC. From a beautiful interactive version of Alice in Wonderland and Dr. Suess' The Cat in The Hat to Starwalk guide to the heavens (hold the iPad up to the sky and it shows you a maginfied view of the constellations, like a virtual telescope), or MathBoard (a virtual blackboard on which you work out equations by hand, suitable for ages 4-13), the possibilities are only just being explored.
Quote:
Originally Posted by fingerbob69
The iPad does strike me as a victory of form over function.
If that is so, why is everybody raving over its easy usability? Grannies use it; 4-year olds use it. Seems to me it is a triumph of real-life application over abstract meaningless specifications.

This is where the PC market fails: it advertises PCs as having an "Intel Dual Core Processor (dah-dun-dah-dun!) and so-many terabytes of harddisk!". Big whoop. Most people don't even know what a "core" is, why "dual core" is a good thing, or how many holiday snaps and music tracks fit on a harddisk of X Terabyte. What is a Terabyte anyway --never mind, what is a hard disk? Most people don't actually know. You are dealing with a population 60% of which could not reliably point out their own stomach or liver, let alone where the CPU is in a PC.

Apple on the other hand, does not bother with specs. It just shows the iMac, the iPhone, the iPad and says: "These are the cool things you can do with it". It looks snazzy. It looks fun. It looks uncomplicated. Guess what appeals to people more?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fingers66
In addition, an awful lot of people use a PC at work and I am fairly sure that even more people will need to in future. Learning to use a PC, keyboard and mouse is now a key facet of work experience. I am not sure that knowing how to use an iPad will be considered a must-have skill by most prospective employers.
The argument in the article is that if a laptop/desktop-shaped device could be created with the OS of the iPad, then people would not have to learn to use a PC. They'd just use it.
Fingers66 31st December 2010, 13:50 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nexxo

There is already a booming market in educational apps, and some of them are already going way beyond what is available on the PC. From a beautiful interactive version of Alice in Wonderland and Dr. Suess' The Cat in The Hat to Starwalk guide to the heavens (hold the iPad up to the sky and it shows you a maginfied view of the constellations, like a virtual telescope), or MathBoard (a virtual blackboard on which you work out equations by hand, suitable for ages 4-13), the possibilities are only just being explored.

Fair point, I wasn't aware of this (I don't have an iPad).
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nexxo

The argument in the article is that if a laptop/desktop-shaped device could be created with the OS of the iPad, then people would not have to learn to use a PC. They'd just use it.

Whilst I see your point, and that of the article, I do not agree. I simply do not see the huge variety of business applications currently in use being run on an iPad-like O/S. Making applications for the lowest common denominator may work in the consumer market but it simply does not work in the business market.
echeb 31st December 2010, 14:02 Quote
it6s a nice idea and you make some good points, but i can see one sticking point that will all ways be there...

cheaper than a conventional PC

...good flipping luck with that one if jobs is at the helm. but seriously, i would think about replacing my laptop for one if it cost the same (£320 refurb 2 yrs ago) and you could jailbreak ubuntu on to it
Nexxo 31st December 2010, 14:13 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fingers66
Whilst I see your point, and that of the article, I do not agree. I simply do not see the huge variety of business applications currently in use being run on an iPad-like O/S. Making applications for the lowest common denominator may work in the consumer market but it simply does not work in the business market.
Why not? Most PCs are operated by office drones for word processing tasks, perhaps some databasing, perhaps some spreadsheets. The hard-core business applications are limited to a small group of professionals who know how to use PCs at the same level that we do.

There is no reason why office software won't happily run on iOS. There is nothing intrinsically different about iOS from any other OS. We've seen Quake and Unreal run on an iPhone. I think that iOS can manage professional business software.

Of course the iPad in its current incarnation is not suited to those tasks. Then again, I think that any PC with a screen smaller than 24" is not very suited to most office tasks. I also think that MS Office is quite clunky and awkward. Outlook does not work in the way that normal people use diaries. Word is powerful but obtuse. Access and Excel require mid-level ninja PC skills to make proper use of. We are still a long, long way off user-friendly software.
alantwelve 31st December 2010, 14:33 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nexxo
Most people don't even know what a "core" is, why "dual core" is a good thing, or how many holiday snaps and music tracks fit on a harddisk of X Terabyte. What is a Terabyte anyway --never mind, what is a hard disk? Most people don't actually know.

I hate to break it to you, fella, but most people don't know what an iPad is. They may have heard of it, what with the huge marketing push it's received, but they'll have heard of a hard disk too.
alantwelve 31st December 2010, 14:42 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fruitloaf
Most people word process, email, web browse, watch video, game and store pictures. You're pretty much 90% there already with a good tablet.

No, you're really not. The only one of those that a tablet can do better than a dirt cheap Windows laptop is, arguably, watching video. And the iPad, with its 4:3 aspect ratio screen is possibly an exception to that rule.

What's it for? Seriously, until you can come up with a compelling answer to that question - and one that can't be countered by pointing out that a cheap laptop/desktop can do it better - the tablet will remain a niche product.
leveller 31st December 2010, 14:48 Quote
Someone mentioned in another thread about the iPad competition or lack thereof, and how iPad2 will trump the new range of tablets when the new tablets can eventually match iPad1. Very true, but much more interestingly is not Apples dominance over the market, but how hard they push the tech - we need them to keep pushing it hard because we all benefit in the end with sexy gadgets and improved computing power.
jrs77 31st December 2010, 14:49 Quote
It's allways the same tbh. As soon as someone mentions Apple the blind haters crawl out of their holes and start cursing without even knowing the most basic of facts.

75% of the people having a PC at home do only stuff with their PC, which they could aswell do with an iPad: browsing the web, playback video and music or some office-tasks like writing an eMail or creating a PowerPoint-presentation etc. iWork for iPad is just excellent actually.

Get a docking-station for the iPad to attach a keyboard, mouse and tv-screen and you can use it just like any other PC.
The only thing lacking on an iPad is the possibility to install software as you like, but that is something not needed for those 75% of users we're talking about anyways.

Wait for the iPad 2 coming in March and see how many people will be pleased by it. iPad 2 will have USB and Camera, which turns it into the device the first iteration should've been.

Yes: I think the future of computing will be slates/tablets for the majority of people outthere as they've got enough power for most tasks you throw at them and because they're easy to use, lightweight and portable. Just what a mobile community wants and needs.
Nexxo 31st December 2010, 15:31 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by alantwelve
I hate to break it to you, fella, but most people don't know what an iPad is. They may have heard of it, what with the huge marketing push it's received, but they'll have heard of a hard disk too.

I seriously doubt that. I hear people talk about an iPad who never talked about computers (except in the context of: "Eeeuw!" perhaps). It takes someone about 30 seconds to understand what an iPad is and what they can do with it. Try that with a hard disk or a dual-core processor.

Most people don't care about specs, or hardware, or OS. They care about being able to use it, easily, reliably and conveniently.
alantwelve 31st December 2010, 15:34 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by jrs77
75% of the people having a PC at home do only stuff with their PC, which they could aswell do with an iPad...

...The only thing lacking on an iPad is the possibility to install software as you like, but that is something not needed for those 75% of users we're talking about anyways.

Why does this patronising, condescending, superior attitude always rear its ugly head whenever Apple's products are discussed? Do you really think that "the iPad is good enough because most people are too stupid to use a proper computer" is a good argument?

It's also plain wrong. I don't know anyone who doesn't own either a Mac or Windows PC, and there isn't a single one of them that doesn't use it for something for which a tablet would not be a suitable replacement.

I'm not saying that tablets are not useful, incidentally - I just bought one myself. But let's not pretend that they currently matter, outside of the tech pages and the Apple store.
jrs77 31st December 2010, 15:53 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by alantwelve
Why does this patronising, condescending, superior attitude always rear its ugly head whenever Apple's products are discussed? Do you really think that "the iPad is good enough because most people are too stupid to use a proper computer" is a good argument?

It's also plain wrong. I don't know anyone who doesn't own either a Mac or Windows PC, and there isn't a single one of them that doesn't use it for something for which a tablet would not be a suitable replacement.

I'm not saying that tablets are not useful, incidentally - I just bought one myself. But let's not pretend that they currently matter, outside of the tech pages and the Apple store.

I'm not saying that most people are too stoopid to use a normal PC, but I say, that most people don't need a normal PC for whyt they do.
Again... 75% of PC-users only do webbrowsing, playback of media-content or some office-tasks and you can do all this stuff on an iPad. Keyboard, mouse and bigger screen can be connected via the docking-station, which turns the iPad into a PC suitable for 75% of all users out there.

Sure, the iPad doesn't matter currently, but in the future slates/tablets will become the norm, just like Notebooks have become the norm during the last decade.
Or look at the sales of Netbooks during the last two years. At first noone was interested and this year these things sold like hot cakes as people understood that that's all they need paired with low costs and high mobility.

When I got my first PC back in 1983 the majority of people thought that PCs won't matter for the endconsumer at all in the future, but is only interesting for companies and manufacturing etc... just sayin' ;)
Pete J 31st December 2010, 15:56 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nexxo
If that is so, why has no competitor brought out an equally specced tablet for less money --especially if those specs are so poor, as many people argue? Every attempt to underprice the iPad has been accompanied by a cut in quality, such as a smaller screen, a poorer quality touch screen, inferior use of materials, a more limited battery life. Strangely enough, the inclusion of features the absence of which is lamented on the iPad, such as USB ports, SD cards and cameras does not seem to make them any more compelling.
You actually have a damn good point there.

I admit, I used to blindly hate Apple products, but during the last couple of years or so my opinion has dramatically changed. All the i products show seamless integration with each other and are easy to adjust to your liking. One thing I particularly liked was the fact that my brother could link his HiFi to his Mac via bluetooth with two clicks - I can't even imagine how you'd do this on a Windows system!

No Flash on the iPad massively sucks though - and is an example of Jobs being a devious little git. Mind you, I imagine any company would do the same in his position.
alantwelve 31st December 2010, 15:58 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nexxo
It takes someone about 30 seconds to understand what an iPad is and what they can do with it

You accidentally linked to an iPad advertisement, by the way, and not something that backs up anything you're trying to say. Sequence shortened, indeed...
Woodspoon 31st December 2010, 15:58 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by jrs77
It's allways the same tbh. As soon as someone mentions Apple the blind haters crawl out of their holes and start cursing without even knowing the most basic of facts.

The same could be said for the Apple fanboy's ravingabout them though.

Back to the arguement:
For a casual browsing machine or media player the iPad is ok but then that's all it is, a big iPod touch, which is no bad thing.
But for anything more than casual browsing or media playback it loses out.
The iPad lacks the ability to be tailored to the user or companys precise needs in the same way laptop's, netbooks, desktop's etc can be.
I'm sure someone will try to point out how wrong I am, but you cant tailor something on an os as locked down as i-os.
leveller 31st December 2010, 16:00 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by alantwelve
But let's not pretend that they currently matter, outside of the tech pages and the Apple store.

I'm not sure if I've mis-read this ... you're saying they aren't useful outside tech pages and the Apple store?
alantwelve 31st December 2010, 16:09 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by jrs77
75% of PC-users only do webbrowsing, playback of media-content or some office-tasks and you can do all this stuff on an iPad.

You can. But is the iPad more suitable than a cheap WIndows laptop? I'd argue that in most cases, it's not.
Quote:
Originally Posted by jrs77
Keyboard, mouse and bigger screen can be connected via the docking-station, which turns the iPad into a PC suitable for 75% of all users out there.

But you'd have trouble convincing me - never mind a more casual computer user - that it would be worth the investment, when you can buy a perfectly serviceable laptop for around £200 less, that will generally do the job better.
Quote:
Originally Posted by jrs77
Sure, the iPad doesn't matter currently, but in the future slates/tablets will become the norm, just like Notebooks have become the norm during the last decade.

I actually think you're probably right, but I don't think that it's a foregone conclusion that tablets will replace the laptop/notebook. The one thing the tablet has is its portability - that's something the laptop cannot compete with, and I can see that tablet might become as common as the smartphone is now. But it won't be the iPad. It'll be something much cheaper, for a start.
eddtox 31st December 2010, 16:13 Quote
After all my bashing of the iPad I'm actually considering getting one - mainly for my little girl. However, features like this one hardly fill me with lust for the device.
alantwelve 31st December 2010, 16:13 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by leveller
Quote:
Originally Posted by alantwelve
But let's not pretend that they currently matter, outside of the tech pages and the Apple store.

I'm not sure if I've mis-read this ... you're saying they aren't useful outside tech pages and the Apple store?

You've misread! I'm saying that apart from geeks and fans of Apple, no-one really cares about the iPad and they aren't even aware that other tablets exist.

The Kindle will do more to drive the adoption of tablet computers than the iPad.
Ross1 31st December 2010, 16:19 Quote
Pretty sure fisher price already released the 'future of computing' according to this article.
M7ck 31st December 2010, 16:20 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by alantwelve
You've misread! I'm saying that apart from geeks and fans of Apple, no-one really cares about the iPad and they aren't even aware that other tablets exist.

Not true! I know 8 iPad owners and the only one who could be considered a geek is me.
jrs77 31st December 2010, 16:25 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Woodspoon
The same could be said for the Apple fanboy's ravingabout them though.

Back to the arguement:
For a casual browsing machine or media player the iPad is ok but then that's all it is, a big iPod touch, which is no bad thing.
But for anything more than casual browsing or media playback it loses out.
The iPad lacks the ability to be tailored to the user or companys precise needs in the same way laptop's, netbooks, desktop's etc can be.
I'm sure someone will try to point out how wrong I am, but you cant tailor something on an os as locked down as i-os.

The lockdown to approved software in the iOS is there so that Apple can more easily provide a flawless experience with their hardware. A software not running flawlessly isn't acceptable for Apple, as people will blame Apple for crap software instead of the Software-Dev. That's why iOS is limited to software available in the AppStore, but there's no limit in the iOS itself that wouldn't allow for taylored software.

If your company needs special software running on the iPad/iPhone then you grab the DevKit, write the software needed and get it approved by Apple. Easy as that and done dozens of times allready, as Apple could'nt be more happy about anything then companies using their hardware.
Quote:
Originally Posted by alantwelve
You can. But is the iPad more suitable than a cheap WIndows laptop? I'd argue that in most cases, it's not.

Yes, it is because of it's touchscreen and way better battery-running-time. A $500 laptop isn't really a mobile-device with 2 hours battery and 3kg of weight actually.
Quote:
But you'd have trouble convincing me - never mind a more casual computer user - that it would be worth the investment, when you can buy a perfectly serviceable laptop for around £200 less, that will generally do the job better.

Touchscreen and the easy to use interface is the biggest selling-point for the iPad.
Quote:
I actually think you're probably right, but I don't think that it's a foregone conclusion that tablets will replace the laptop/notebook. The one thing the tablet has is its portability - that's something the laptop cannot compete with, and I can see that tablet might become as common as the smartphone is now. But it won't be the iPad. It'll be something much cheaper, for a start.

Laptops have replaced desktop-systems aswell during the last 5 years for a big part of the users, so why shouldn't tablets replace the notebooks?

And no. It doens't have to be the iPad, it could aswell be the adam from notionink.com if you like. The iPad is however the only real one available currently.
Nexxo 31st December 2010, 16:28 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by alantwelve
Why does this patronising, condescending, superior attitude always rear its ugly head whenever Apple's products are discussed? Do you really think that "the iPad is good enough because most people are too stupid to use a proper computer" is a good argument?

It's also plain wrong. I don't know anyone who doesn't own either a Mac or Windows PC, and there isn't a single one of them that doesn't use it for something for which a tablet would not be a suitable replacement.

I'm not saying that tablets are not useful, incidentally - I just bought one myself. But let's not pretend that they currently matter, outside of the tech pages and the Apple store.

Me thinks you are projecting. :p

OK, let's talk about the "average population". Most people are not that interested in computers. I know, this may come as a shock to you, but at work they are tolerated as a necessary tool for office tasks. The US Bureau of Labor Statistics for instance reports that the most commonly reported task for the 77 million workers who used computer at work in 2003 was accessing the Internet or using e-mail, followed by word processing, spreadsheets and databases and calendar scheduling. Only 16% used it for programming.

The US Census bureau reports that at home, 60% of the population owns a computer and 50% uses it for internet access. If you look at the most common reported uses of the internet you find that most of it involves activities could be done more comfortably on a "lean-back" device like a tablet. More recently the internet is most commonly accessed through smart mobile devices or laptops. Since smartphones have become more popular, internet use has started to skyrocket. Much of this is not through the web browser, but specific social networking and data (weather, maps, media) apps.

The reason for this is simple: smartphones are an easy and casual way to access the internet --no computer expertise required. No software updates, no anti-virus programs, no fussing with firewalls, networks, file management or the vagaries of a particular operating system. No boot times. No unrecoverable crashes. No lost or corrupted files.

Now imagine a computer with the casual convenience and battery life of a smartphone. Presto: iPad. For most people it's enough. In fact, it is exactly what they want and none of the complicated crap they don't want.
Nexxo 31st December 2010, 16:39 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by alantwelve
You accidentally linked to an iPad advertisement, by the way, and not something that backs up anything you're trying to say. Sequence shortened, indeed...
No, that was deliberate. It illustrates my point: in 30 seconds you can explain to a lay person what an iPad is. And it does not mention specs; it mentions what you can do with it.
Quote:
Originally Posted by alantwelve
You've misread! I'm saying that apart from geeks and fans of Apple, no-one really cares about the iPad and they aren't even aware that other tablets exist.

The Kindle will do more to drive the adoption of tablet computers than the iPad.

Total number of Kindle's sold since November 2007: 4 million.

Total number of iPads sold since April 2010: 7.5 million.

I think I can see which is driving the tablet market. :)
alantwelve 31st December 2010, 16:41 Quote
Anyway, the main thrust of the article was whether the iPad could replace the desktop and the answer is no. People may not need the extra power of their desktop systems, but I'm pretty sure they'd want it. Lets face it compared to an iPad + dock + keyboard, a low cost Windows desktop is more powerful, has more storage, has a much larger screen and it costs a lot less. It's simply better suited to so many things, too. People may get a tablet as well, but it won't replace the desktop.

I also think that the computer user who only uses their computer for a bit of browsing, the odd e-mail and some minor word processing is largely a myth. I'm not saying they don't exist, but they are absolutely by no means the majority of users - not even close. And even if they did represent the majority, how on earth do you think anyone could convince them to spend what an iPad costs on something they hardly really use?

Tablets are going to be big, but not for a few years yet, and they're never going to replace the desktop. MS sold 240 million Windows 7 licenses in a year, and there are what, 4 times as many XP installs out there as there are 7? The iPad, by comparison, is an irrelevance, but very interesting all the same.
Nexxo 31st December 2010, 17:03 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by alantwelve
Anyway, the main thrust of the article was whether the iPad could replace the desktop and the answer is no. People may not need the extra power of their desktop systems, but I'm pretty sure they'd want it. Lets face it compared to an iPad + dock + keyboard, a low cost Windows desktop is more powerful, has more storage, has a much larger screen and it costs a lot less. It's simply better suited to so many things, too. People may get a tablet as well, but it won't replace the desktop.
That is not what the article is saying. What it is saying is that a desktop PC based on the philosophy of the iPad: i.e. an app-based 'closed garden' iOS focusing on doing specific tasks simply and well is the future. And I'm inclined to agree. It is what the muggles want.

For the rest, there is stuff like Linux: geeky, powerful, but not a ride for the weak. :)
Quote:
Originally Posted by alantwelve
I also think that the computer user who only uses their computer for a bit of browsing, the odd e-mail and some minor word processing is largely a myth. I'm not saying they don't exist, but they are absolutely by no means the majority of users - not even close. And even if they did represent the majority, how on earth do you think anyone could convince them to spend what an iPad costs on something they hardly really use?
I think that you are letting your opinion get in the way of the facts. I've shown you census statistics that are saying exactly that. We also are seeing 7 million iPads sold in the first 9 months of its inception. I don't think people need convincing.
Quote:
Originally Posted by alantwelve
Tablets are going to be big, but not for a few years yet, and they're never going to replace the desktop. MS sold 240 million Windows 7 licenses in a year, and there are what, 4 times as many XP installs out there as there are 7? The iPad, by comparison, is an irrelevance, but very interesting all the same.
Again, nobody is saying that tablets are going to replace the desktop. The article suggests that desktops are going to be designed to be more like the iPad in philosophy. Having played with Windows 7 I can see that this is true. Windows 7 is vastly simplified in use over Vista (to the extent that I, being a geek, really don't like it). And a 'closed garden' app system? That is Microsoft's wet dream. It is going to happen.
Gradius 31st December 2010, 18:05 Quote
iPad is just a toy it has no horse power at all!

And besides, is already obsolete!
Nexxo 31st December 2010, 18:16 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gradius
iPad is just a toy it has no horse power at all!

And besides, is already obsolete!
Millennium hand and shrimp! :p
M7ck 31st December 2010, 18:29 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gradius
iPad is just a toy it has no horse power at all!

And besides, is already obsolete!

Total nonsense. A toy????? LEGO is a toy, Barbie is a toy, Lotso Hugs is a toy but the iPad is far from a toy.

What has made it obsolete? Go on try answer, now go and try catch a flying pig and let the adults have an intelligent discussion.
jrs77 31st December 2010, 18:31 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gradius
iPad is just a toy it has no horse power at all!

And besides, is already obsolete!

It can handle 100% of the tasks the majority of users throw a t a PC these days. The tech-savvy people here on bit-tech playing games or rendering 3d-images etc are not the majority, but make up for only some high estimated 25% of the PC-users.

Aslong as a device can playback HD-video and handle webbrowsing it's sufficient enough for 75% of the people outthere.

The majority wants ease of use for office-tasks, webbrowsing and media-playback in a device they don't have to know anything about besides where to turn it on and how to use.
Additionally the hardware+software has to be as robust as possible prone to lockups. Software bought needs to run 100% as intended without having to care about upgrades or new drivers etc.

And why is the iPad obsolete? Just because the iPad2 is being released in 2-3 month? An improoved iPad with front/rear camera and USB-port, which should draw even more attention?
StoneyMahoney 31st December 2010, 18:49 Quote
I wouldn't even dream of deploying the iPad as the staple system for any of the companies I've worked for. It's too easy to steal, can't be wired up to the network and needs a dozen add-ons and work-arounds just to do what a PC with Windows and Office can do out of the box at half the price.

Considering the number of macros, scripts and applets I've written to simplify small but repetitive jobs around the office, being unable to deploy self-written programs without getting some other entity to pass judgment over them first is a total deal breaker.

If I offered an iPad as an alternative to a PC to anyone I've worked in an office with, they'd laugh at me. I think your idea of what "normal office use" entails is laughable.
eddtox 31st December 2010, 18:57 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nexxo
No, that was deliberate. It illustrates my point: in 30 seconds you can explain to a lay person what an iPad is. And it does not mention specs; it mentions what you can do with it.



Total number of Kindle's sold since November 2007: 4 million.

Total number of iPads sold since April 2010: 7.5 million.

I think I can see which is driving the tablet market. :)

While I agree with most of what you are saying, I think your figures are a bit off.

Even conservative estimates suggest the kindle 3 has sold 5 million units since September, while there are reports that the figure could be as high as 9 million. [sauce]
Nexxo 31st December 2010, 18:58 Quote
It says that it will have sold about 8 million by the end of this year. Apple is expected to have sold 12 million iPads by the end of the year. Not too shabby for an item that is substantially more expensive.
M7ck 31st December 2010, 19:00 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by eddtox
While I agree with most of what you are saying, I think your figures are a bit off.

Even conservative estimates suggest the kindle 3 has sold 5 million units since September, while there are reports that the figure could be as high as 9 million. [sauce]

Your source also puts the iPad at 12 million units which still reiterates Nexxo's post.
Nexxo 31st December 2010, 19:03 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by StoneyMahoney
I wouldn't even dream of deploying the iPad as the staple system for any of the companies I've worked for. It's too easy to steal, can't be wired up to the network and needs a dozen add-ons and work-arounds just to do what a PC with Windows and Office can do out of the box at half the price.

Considering the number of macros, scripts and applets I've written to simplify small but repetitive jobs around the office, being unable to deploy self-written programs without getting some other entity to pass judgment over them first is a total deal breaker.

If I offered an iPad as an alternative to a PC to anyone I've worked in an office with, they'd laugh at me. I think your idea of what "normal office use" entails is laughable.

Read the article (please).
eddtox 31st December 2010, 19:24 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nexxo
It says that it will have sold about 8 million by the end of this year. Apple is expected to have sold 12 million iPads by the end of the year. Not too shabby for an item that is substantially more expensive.
Quote:
Originally Posted by M7ck
Your source also puts the iPad at 12 million units which still reiterates Nexxo's post.

Nexxo said that the kindle has sold 4 million units since November 2007, this is not accurate, as even conservative estimates suggest that it has sold 5 million in the last 3 months.

The ipad is wildly successful, not question about it, but to suggest that it has sold more units in 9 months than the kindle has in over three years is simply not true
Snips 31st December 2010, 19:28 Quote
The main problem with this article is it assumes every software developer would spend the money to develope their software to run on the iOS. Also, that the businesses themselves would pay £400 for a base gadget that's £200 more than a base PC. As well as the back office servers or cloud costs.

"There is no reason why office software won't happily run on iOS. There is nothing intrinsically different about iOS from any other OS. We've seen Quake and Unreal run on an iPhone. I think that iOS can manage professional business software."

That is a huge assumption. Why do you think Microsoft quickly dispelled the commercial failure of Vista? I know of some businesses who adopted it early but I know a lot more who didn't. Most waited for Windows 7 but only then did they consider it once they had checked with their back office system developer for compatibility. We aren't just talking about Microsoft Office here. I know plenty of accountancy and asset management software developers who will not even consider supplying Apple OS now. The demand now is just not great enough.

That's a multi billion pound market that rightly or wrongly is currently exclusive to PC's and Microsoft based systems.
M7ck 31st December 2010, 19:28 Quote
@eddtox
The article you linked to says otherwise...........
Nexxo 31st December 2010, 19:30 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by eddtox
Nexxo said that the kindle has sold 4 million units since November 2007, this is not accurate, as even conservative estimates suggest that it has sold 5 million in the last 3 months.

The ipad is wildly successful, not question about it, but to suggest that it has sold more units in 9 months than the kindle has in over three years is simply not true

I stand corrected (Wikipedia is obviously lagging a bit behind). Still, more iPads have been sold. Apple sold 3 million iPads in the first 80 days.
VipersGratitude 31st December 2010, 19:31 Quote
Quote:
iPad Maxi
A Maxi Pad? I hope you're joking...
Quote:
That’s the iPad, but not in its current form. Even my mother would feel much more at home if her computer still had a keyboard and mouse, as these input devices enable a person to be more productive than mere fingers. Similarly, the iPad's screen needs to be larger than 9.7in if the iPad's going to be a useful computer, rather than a frivolous distraction.

So, basically an eeeTop with Android installed, huh? Nope, wouldn't work.

If you go for the larger screensize you've committed yourself to a stationary device. If you have a stationary device you should have precision input devices. If you have precision input devices it negates the need for a n expensive, cack-handed touch screen. And if you don't have the touch screen you might as well have an operating system that can handle almost all the peripherals you throw at it...

As for the ease of setup and use for the luddite 80%? Well remember that you don't sell this product to a consumer in complete isolation, you sell to their ecosystem, and by the same statistics 1 out of every 4 other people the consumer knows is a geek - Maybe a 14yr old nephew who can get the nework set up, rid you of that virus, or install an NAS device for a fraction of the £££'s of a walled garden.

So what does that leave us with? Oh, a Windows-based PC...
Nexxo 31st December 2010, 19:34 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Snips
"There is no reason why office software won't happily run on iOS. There is nothing intrinsically different about iOS from any other OS. We've seen Quake and Unreal run on an iPhone. I think that iOS can manage professional business software."

That is a huge assumption. Why do you think Microsoft quickly dispelled the commercial failure of Vista? I know of some businesses who adopted it early but I know a lot more who didn't.
That has nothing to do with its ability to run professional software. I happily run Office 2007 and a whole lot of esoteric crap besides on Vista. It had more to do with companies not wanting to spend a crapload of money on licences for a new OS that did not appear to offer substantial improvements over XP, which they were very comfortable with, thank you very much.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Snips
Most waited for Windows 7 but only then did they consider it once they had checked with their back office system developer for compatibility. We aren't just talking about Microsoft Office here. I know plenty of accountancy and asset management software developers who will not even consider supplying Apple OS now. The demand now is just not great enough.
Demand or lack of it has nothing to do with OS capability. Anything Windows can do, OSX can do.
Nexxo 31st December 2010, 19:36 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by VipersGratitude
As for the ease of setup and use for the luddite 80%? Well remember that you don't sell this product to a consumer in complete isolation, you sell to their ecosystem, and by the same statistics 1 out of every 4 other people the consumer knows is a geek - Maybe a 14yr old nephew who can get the nework set up, rid you of that virus, or install an NAS device for a fraction of the £££'s of a walled garden.
Many people do not want to be dependent on their geeky friends.
Snips 31st December 2010, 19:37 Quote
I didn't have a problem with Vista either.

Again you are answering or correcting your own statements.
Cthippo 31st December 2010, 19:40 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nexxo

For the rest, there is stuff like Linux: geeky, powerful, but not a ride for the weak. :)

I think you may have this backwards.

To me this is a software issue, not a hardware one. I think that it's going to be a limited and very user friendly linux distro that will make this concept work.

Consider this: if you had a OS similar to iOS, but open source, that could run on PCs, tablets, netbooks, laptops and maybe even smartphones and did all the things that 80% of people needed it to do, was generally unbreakable, and designed from the outset to be nearly impervious to viruses no matter how dumb the user is. Put that together, make it easy to add business specific apps, and you have your answer. Some eye candy wouldn't hurt either.

The problem with linux shows up when you need to try to add things. Once it's up and running, it can be very user friendly.

I think the proper form factor for the kind of concept we're talking about here is the netbook. Maybe it's just me, but I have a terrible time typing on touchscreens and find the screen on my smartphone way too small for browsing. I could very well be wrong, but I think the lack of a keyboard and mouse is going to be a barrier to entry for a lot of business users.

EDIT:

Continuing to think about this...

What if you had an open source, but essentially closed (to the user) OS that did the following:

Browse the internet (supports multiple browsers which can be downloaded from the "app store")

Had a basic IM program (take your pick) and a functional email program (Thunderbird?)

Play all common media types (VLC?)

Had a basic photo viewer with limited editing capabilities (I like Fast stone, but Picasa could also be an example)

Performed standard office tasks (Open Office)

Play casual games (again, from an app store)

Have the ability for specialized software to be added.

If you had an OS that did all of that out of the box, wouldn't that accommodate 80+ percent of users? Taking a quick look at what's on my computer, that accomplishes pretty much everything I do. I have a few programs I've downloaded for occasional one-off things (screen capture, .pdf to .tiff converter, etc). Also, with the possible exception of video, none of this stuff is resource intensive.

Simple, secure, and just works is a good place for an OS to be. Neither Linux nor Windows can be described that way because both of them are designed to be all things to all people (I can't speak to iOS having not used it).

Sounds almost like a smartphone OS. Does a few things, does them well, and doesn't worry about everything else.
Nexxo 31st December 2010, 19:42 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Snips
I didn't have a problem with Vista either.

Again you are answering or correcting your own statements.

I'm not following you.
Nexxo 31st December 2010, 19:45 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cthippo
I think you may have this backwards.

To me this is a software issue, not a hardware one. I think that it's going to be a limited and very user friendly linux distro that will make this concept work.

Consider this: if you had a OS similar to iOS, but open source, that could run on PCs, tablets, netbooks, laptops and maybe even smartphones and did all the things that 80% of people needed it to do, was generally unbreakable, and designed from the outset to be nearly impervious to viruses no matter how dumb the user is. Put that together, make it easy to add business specific apps, and you have your answer. Some eye candy wouldn't hurt either.
Sounds like Android --or where it is going. :D
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cthippo
I think the proper form factor for the kind of concept we're talking about here is the netbook. Maybe it's just me, but I have a terrible time typing on touchscreens and find the screen on my smartphone way too small for browsing. I could very well be wrong, but I think the lack of a keyboard and mouse is going to be a barrier to entry for a lot of business users.
The article does not suggest that desktops should be touch-screen only devices. It is arguing that the OS and hardware should follow the same philosophy: ease of use, reliability, instant-on, tailored to be lean and efficient for specific uses.
VipersGratitude 31st December 2010, 19:47 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nexxo
Many people do not want to be dependent on their geeky friends.

I guarantee that most people would rather be dependent on their geeky friends than be dependent on a company who charge hundreds of pounds for the priviledge of being dependent on them
Nexxo 31st December 2010, 19:59 Quote
Depends. :p If a 'closed garden' device is much less likely to go wrong in the first place, then there is no dependence on anybody to keep it functioning.
Cthippo 31st December 2010, 20:14 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nexxo
Sounds like Android --or where it is going. :D

Yeah, by the end of the edit that's pretty much what I was thinking. Does Android support x86? What ever happened to the ChromeOS?
eddtox 31st December 2010, 20:26 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cthippo
Yeah, by the end of the edit that's pretty much what I was thinking. Does Android support x86? What ever happened to the ChromeOS?

I think they're handing out trial units with it installed. Cr-48 or something of the sort.
VipersGratitude 31st December 2010, 20:39 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nexxo
Depends. :p If a 'closed garden' device is much less likely to go wrong in the first place, then there is no dependence on anybody to keep it functioning.

im not talking about things going wrong, im talking about expanding capabilities with upgrades and peripherals... But dont kid yourself apple products hardly ever fail
docodine 31st December 2010, 20:39 Quote
Android X86 exists, ask John about it.

I'm running Chrome OS right now!
M7ck 31st December 2010, 20:43 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by VipersGratitude
im not talking about things going wrong, im talking about expanding capabilities with upgrades and peripherals... But dont kid yourself apple products hardly ever fail

Oh come on, the story you posted has only one macbook failure. Hardly an epidemic. And dont pretend you were talking about peripherals, you were clearly talking about fixing things. Hence the statement "I guarantee that most people would rather be dependent on their geeky friends than be dependent on a company who charge hundreds of pounds for the priviledge of being dependent on them"
eddtox 31st December 2010, 20:43 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by VipersGratitude
im not talking about things going wrong, im talking about expanding capabilities with upgrades and peripherals... But dont kid yourself apple products hardly ever fail

The question is, what percentage of the population actually does that? It seems to me that most 'lay' people don't go much further than adding a printer and using a digital camera sometimes.

Perhaps the problem with this article is that it mentioned the iPad by name. If it had just listed some of its characteristics, nobody would have batted an eyelid.
Cthippo 31st December 2010, 20:53 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by docodine
I'm running Chrome OS right now!

On what hardware? Where did you find it?
Fizzban 31st December 2010, 20:59 Quote
Quote:
Is the iPad the future of computing?

When they are thinner, cheaper and lighter, then they will useful. They still seem a bit cumbersome at the moment.
Volund 31st December 2010, 21:01 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cthippo
On what hardware? Where did you find it?

Google has a pilot program (http://www.google.com/chromeos/pilot-program.html) where they are sending out ChromeOS powered netbooks with free (limited) 3G service to testers who meet their requirements.

The netbook they are using is called the CR-48 - http://www.google.com/chromeos/pilot-program-cr48.html

has a 12" display, webcam, full sized keyboard, apparently 8 hrs of running battery life, and built in wifi and 3G
jrs77 31st December 2010, 21:03 Quote
It's astonishing that there's so many people arguing in here, who apparently didn't even read the article this discussion is tied to.

Forget about Apple for a moment and let's take a more general approach... maybe then you see where this one is going.

To clarify: Take any OS you want and reduce it to it's bare minimum set of functions paired with a very lightweight and easy to use interface, that every 2 year old can deal with. Android, WindowsPhone7, iOS whatever.
Then pair it with a very low power and lightweight hardware that is powerful enough to run an office-suit, a browser and a HD-mediaplayer and which is somewhat portable. Think of a 13" netbook if a tablet isn't your thing.

Now, to make this system resilient and free of maintenance you lock the OS and let it only accept software that is tested by the manufacturer. However, everyone is free to write programs for the system and the manufacturer only makes sure that the software you wrote is 100% compatible and free of malicious code... seal of approval if you like.

This is what we're talking about, and as the iPad is the only one currently which got most of these points covered allready it's taken as an example.

M$ and Google will be aswell releasing something like the Apple itunes store within the next year for WP7 and Android and they will aswell lock down their systems once the people started to get used to the new easy systems.

EDIT: Yeah, the ChromeOS-thingy will be exactly what we're talking about when it's finished. They will aswell have a locked down system paired with an AppStore and it'll be even more locked down then what's done by Apple, as you don't even download and intall the apps to your device anymore, but you only get to use them via internet, tied to your Google-account.
Volund 31st December 2010, 21:17 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by jrs77
It's astonishing that there's so many people arguing in here, who apparently didn't even read the article this discussion is tied to.

Forget about Apple for a moment and let's take a more general approach... maybe then you see where this one is going.

I think this should have been the way that the article was written in the first place. Apple is such a polarizing topic gin general (as has been proven hundreds of times of these forums) It was inevitable that the discussion was going to go downhill.

I personally think that the linux world could be doing a lot more to get into the mainstream. They had a big push a few years ago in netbooks, but it didn't catch on. Partially because of microsoft's deals with hardware manufacturers, but also because honestly, installing software isn't the easiest for a lay person.

Already most distributions have an "app store" style software management system, but this could be adapted to a partially closed system, which I would like to see personally. An "app store" with approved software for people who might not be comfortable with computers, but also allow the user control over their own system.

That is the main problem I have with Apple and their hardware, it seems almost like you are renting your hardware, you can only use it under their "rules".... I don't like being told to do with hardware I buy, I want to have options. Although I realize that the idea of a closed ecosystem might be great for a vast majority of people (described earlier as "lowest common denominator), I worry that it might become the norm, which is the opposite way that computing should go imho.
fingerbob69 31st December 2010, 21:26 Quote
"If that is so, why is everybody raving over its easy usability? Grannies use it; 4-year olds use it. Seems to me it is a triumph of real-life application over abstract meaningless specifications."

Exactly my point. As a grown up computer, for home or office use it's far too simplistic.

"But the entire point of the iPad is not having to worry about your hardware or software, there's no messing around with the device, it just works."

And absolutely no room for anything "out of the box" ...in Steve Jobs walled orchard all are welcome so long as they obey His rules while paying His prices. Hmmmm!
Cthippo 31st December 2010, 21:36 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Volund
Although I realize that the idea of a closed ecosystem might be great for a vast majority of people (described earlier as "lowest common denominator), I worry that it might become the norm, which is the opposite way that computing should go imho.

Microsoft has been creeping that way for, well, forever. The problem is they also need to support people like us who demand flexibility and high performance.

Maybe it's time for something of an evolutionary fork in OS design. A limited, but functional relatively low cost system for the masses and more complicated, but powerful and flexible systems for us.
Nexxo 31st December 2010, 22:04 Quote
If Evolution could manage MS Exchange server accounts, my next PC would run Linux. No doubt about it.
jrs77 31st December 2010, 22:09 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cthippo
Microsoft has been creeping that way for, well, forever. The problem is they also need to support people like us who demand flexibility and high performance.

Maybe it's time for something of an evolutionary fork in OS design. A limited, but functional relatively low cost system for the masses and more complicated, but powerful and flexible systems for us.

limited systems:

- android, WP7, iOS or anything like this for the majority who only need office-, media- and internet-stuff paired with low-power out-of-the-box/all-in-one hardware

- next-gen consoles for gaming

unlimited systems:

- linux on whatever hardware people can make it run on

That's the future I foresee some 10 years from now for the consumer-market.

The systems used at work will be still something like the Windows-boxes of today premade by manufacturers like Dell or HP, but the OS might change to linux aswell and corps writing their own software still like they do today with their SAP-stuff.
Nexxo 31st December 2010, 22:19 Quote
My brother-in-law works for Landrover. He is a design engineer. Let me tell you that there are some esoteric computers in use there. None of them PCs and none running Windows.
Volund 31st December 2010, 23:27 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cthippo
Microsoft has been creeping that way for, well, forever. The problem is they also need to support people like us who demand flexibility and high performance.

It's not a problem if it keeps them more open then apple. It might not be the way they want to go , but it isn't a bad thing for people who want to use their computers on their own terms.

I would be 100% linux on all of my systems tomorrow if only netflix (silverlight) and the majority of the games I play were made compatible overnight :(
docodine 1st January 2011, 01:17 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cthippo
On what hardware? Where did you find it?

Cr-48 laptop, but you can run it on any normal PC. I had it on my Eee PC back in late '09.

Disk images are available at various places online, and you can get a lot of info from Google. Search for 'Chromium OS'.
Snips 1st January 2011, 15:20 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nexxo
My brother-in-law works for Landrover. He is a design engineer. Let me tell you that there are some esoteric computers in use there. None of them PCs and none running Windows.

And your point was?
leveller 1st January 2011, 16:28 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Snips
And your point was?

Snips, looks to me like your itching ... why not just scratch it?
StoneyMahoney 1st January 2011, 16:32 Quote
@Nexxo: I did read the article. It's a synaptic misfire at best, utter horsesh*t at worst.

iOS, Android and Windows Phone are cut-down OSes for devices with limited interfaces, connectivity and performance. Before they were cut-down they were perfectly serviceable business-grade production OSes - Mac OS X, Linux and Windows.

Why the hell would you cut down an OS for consumer use in a restrictive environment, then refit it back up to that level? It makes no sense. The business environment is already perfectly well served by the original products. In the business environment all the stuff that's been cut out is operationally required - active directory, ODBC, remote administration, decent printing support, even proper file management. All those Windows services we like to disable at home are absolutely essential at work these days.

None of the benefits you try and pitch work out either. Reliance on the app store heavily restricts in-house developed programs and scripts. Any system administrator can lock down a fully-features OS in minutes - ever heard of group policy? Your price arguments are pure fantasy. You can't take a device that's already 2-3x times more expensive than a PC, make it larger and faster AND cut it's price by 50-70%.

My final point - when the business market is over-saturated with products that do everything needed in that environment, why try and force something cut-down and under-spec'd back into that environment when it's TCO is higher and operational procedures are unknown and untested?

It'll never happen. You might as well try to bring a hardware-support updated version of Windows 3.1 to market.
frontline 1st January 2011, 17:23 Quote
Over-priced hardware and style over substance are the future of computing? We're screwed then.

I really don't see the benefits of the ipad, the iphone and other smartphones can do a lot of the same tasks in a smaller form factor and the ipad doesn't meet the needs of those who need a 'proper' PC with mouse and keyboard.

I was sceptical about netbooks when they first appeared, however i think 2011 will be the year that the netbook/ultra-portable laptop really takes off with AMD's fusion platform giving more powerful processing power and HD video playback in a small form factor, probably at a cheaper price point than ipad too.
jrs77 1st January 2011, 17:41 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by StoneyMahoney
@Nexxo: I did read the article. It's a synaptic misfire at best, utter horsesh*t at worst.

iOS, Android and Windows Phone are cut-down OSes for devices with limited interfaces, connectivity and performance. Before they were cut-down they were perfectly serviceable business-grade production OSes - Mac OS X, Linux and Windows.

Why the hell would you cut down an OS for consumer use in a restrictive environment, then refit it back up to that level? It makes no sense. The business environment is already perfectly well served by the original products. In the business environment all the stuff that's been cut out is operationally required - active directory, ODBC, remote administration, decent printing support, even proper file management. All those Windows services we like to disable at home are absolutely essential at work these days.

None of the benefits you try and pitch work out either. Reliance on the app store heavily restricts in-house developed programs and scripts. Any system administrator can lock down a fully-features OS in minutes - ever heard of group policy? Your price arguments are pure fantasy. You can't take a device that's already 2-3x times more expensive than a PC, make it larger and faster AND cut it's price by 50-70%.

My final point - when the business market is over-saturated with products that do everything needed in that environment, why try and force something cut-down and under-spec'd back into that environment when it's TCO is higher and operational procedures are unknown and untested?

It'll never happen. You might as well try to bring a hardware-support updated version of Windows 3.1 to market.

We're not talking about the corporate-use of PC-systems, but we're talking about homePC-users.

The vast majority of endconsumers (i.e. people at home) don't need a fully fledged OS' for the stuff they're doing with their PCs/tablets/smartphones etc... They only need a fast, easy to use, maintenance-free and reliable OS that supports office-suite, internet-applications and media-playback.

Look at the currently developed ChromeOS and you'll see where the future is heading in the endconsumer-market.
Quote:
Originally Posted by frontline
Over-priced hardware and style over substance are the future of computing? We're screwed then.

I really don't see the benefits of the ipad, the iphone and other smartphones can do a lot of the same tasks in a smaller form factor and the ipad doesn't meet the needs of those who need a 'proper' PC with mouse and keyboard.

I was sceptical about netbooks when they first appeared, however i think 2011 will be the year that the netbook/ultra-portable laptop really takes off with AMD's fusion platform giving more powerful processing power and HD video playback in a small form factor, probably at a cheaper price point than ipad too.

The question isn't about the iPad. The question is about a slim OS and the way software will be distributed in the future.
Look at ChromeOS. It uses a netbook aswell, but the OS is only consisting of a browser basically and all software is installed online tied to your Google-account.

And guess what. Most people won't have a problem with that kind of locked down system at all aslong as it's easy to use and does the three tasks its ment for: office, internet and media.
Nexxo 1st January 2011, 18:06 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by StoneyMahoney
@Nexxo: I did read the article. It's a synaptic misfire at best, utter horsesh*t at worst.

iOS, Android and Windows Phone are cut-down OSes for devices with limited interfaces, connectivity and performance. Before they were cut-down they were perfectly serviceable business-grade production OSes - Mac OS X, Linux and Windows.

Why the hell would you cut down an OS for consumer use in a restrictive environment, then refit it back up to that level? It makes no sense. The business environment is already perfectly well served by the original products. In the business environment all the stuff that's been cut out is operationally required - active directory, ODBC, remote administration, decent printing support, even proper file management. All those Windows services we like to disable at home are absolutely essential at work these days.
I'd question that. What we are seeing is increasingly bloated desktop OS's. Windows 3.11 needed 14Mb of harddisk space, 3Mb RAM and could run on a 386. Windows 98 needed 195Mb and 24Mb RAM and struggled a bit on a 66Mhz 486. XP needs 1.5Gb HDD and 128Mb RAM. Windows 7 needs 16Gb HDD and 1Gb RAM, and a CPU that whizzes along at at least 1000Mhz. Most of this is not increased functionality for the end user (well, at least not since Windows 2000).

Then there is anti-virus software, malware software, system backup software, system partitioning and maintenance software... it all gets a bit techy. Most home users don't want to have to bother with that. It would be nice if most employees wouldn't have to either. Sure: behind the scenes IT personnel need to have a whole lot of functionality, but the office drone does not. So wouldn't it be nice if they had a simple thin client device for the basic stuff, while the IT geeks manage the show from their full-fledged machines?

You are looking too much at this from the OS-cut-down-to-the-simplified-hardware level. It is also an OS cut-down-to-the-simple-user level. It could be scaled up again to work on beefier hardware, but the simple functionality could be preserved --for those who want/need it.
Quote:
Originally Posted by StoneyMahoney
None of the benefits you try and pitch work out either. Reliance on the app store heavily restricts in-house developed programs and scripts. Any system administrator can lock down a fully-features OS in minutes - ever heard of group policy? Your price arguments are pure fantasy. You can't take a device that's already 2-3x times more expensive than a PC, make it larger and faster AND cut it's price by 50-70%.
I agree on the first point, although that can be an elective issue. And in technology, price goes up as things get smaller. ;)
Quote:
Originally Posted by StoneyMahoney
My final point - when the business market is over-saturated with products that do everything needed in that environment, why try and force something cut-down and under-spec'd back into that environment when it's TCO is higher and operational procedures are unknown and untested?

It'll never happen. You might as well try to bring a hardware-support updated version of Windows 3.1 to market.
It is where things will be going though, because that is what Microsoft wants. IT runs the Full Geek™ version on their servers and maintenance machines (at a price premium, of course), while office drones and home users have the Closed Garden Lite™ version on their thin clients, running internet-based Live applications and services.
chrisb2e9 1st January 2011, 18:15 Quote
Quote:
cheaper than a conventional PC
first problem. Pc's aren't that expensive. and if you look at it in terms of hardware per hardware. anything made by apple is overpriced. pc's are cheaper.
Quote:

After all, you just need to password-protect or remove the App Store, and you’ll have a locked down system.
You can easily lock down any windows based system.
Quote:

What's more, your employees would thank you for the cool new PC on their desk, rather than feeling as if they're being treated like children, as many workers do feel about their locked-down work PCs.
You just said that you want to lock out the app store and now you complain about workers being treated like children with locked down computers? .....
Quote:

While there will always be a market for high-performance systems for gaming, media creation and so on, most people don’t need that level of power.
And that's why most people don't buy a pc with that level of power. and again lets not forget that apple charges more for hardware than anyone else.

Would you buy an alienware laptop for gaming? no? because its overpriced for a brand name? Same concept applies. I won't buy an apple for work or casual pc use because I can get the same thing for cheaper with a pc.

A fool and his money are soon parted.
jrs77 1st January 2011, 18:24 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisb2e9
first problem. Pc's aren't that expensive. and if you look at it in terms of hardware per hardware. anything made by apple is overpriced. pc's are cheaper.

You can easily lock down any windows based system.

You just said that you want to lock out the app store and now you complain about workers being treated like children with locked down computers? .....

And that's why most people don't buy a pc with that level of power. and again lets not forget that apple charges more for hardware than anyone else.

Would you buy an alienware laptop for gaming? no? because its overpriced for a brand name? Same concept applies. I won't buy an apple for work or casual pc use because I can get the same thing for cheaper with a pc.

A fool and his money are soon parted.

You still missed the point, that the discussion isn't about Apple, but about slim and easy to use OS' paired with lightweight hardware.

It's amazing that people get all stirred up instantly as soon as someone mentions Apple and totally not get the point of the article or the discussion, bacause they don't even bother to read anything then "APPLE".
Cthippo 1st January 2011, 19:06 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by jrs77
It's amazing that people get all stirred up instantly as soon as someone mentions Apple and totally not get the point of the article or the discussion, bacause they don't even bother to read anything then "APPLE".

This.

It really has nothing to do with Apple at all, nor their hardware. The author could have cited an Android smartphone as an example instead.

This is really about software. Does everyone need a full featured, complex, and vulnerable OS, or would most people be happy with something simple that just works, even if it is limited in what it can do?

I'd like to see someone put together a very minimal linux distro with the applications I mentioned earlier in the thread and a essentially closed architecture and we could try it our on our grandparents.
frontline 1st January 2011, 19:13 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by jrs77
You still missed the point, that the discussion isn't about Apple, but about slim and easy to use OS' paired with lightweight hardware.

It's amazing that people get all stirred up instantly as soon as someone mentions Apple and totally not get the point of the article or the discussion, bacause they don't even bother to read anything then "APPLE".

The crux of the article is about ipad or an ipad like device being the future of computing - whether made by Apple or not. Similar devices by Samsung and the like are equally useless in my eyes.

" imagine a PC that doesn't fail, yet is cool, fun and easy to use. That's the iPad". That sentence is equally true of all the PC's and Windows laptops i've owned/built over the last few years.

A slim and easy to use OS is what a smartphone should be all about, when it comes to versatile computing for the home, i want a more powerful option, that won't necessarily play complex games at high resolutions, but will do the majority of other stuff, including multi-tasking to a decent level of performance and HD 720p/1080p video playback at smooth framerates, plus the mouse/keyboard input that makes them easy to use.
Snips 1st January 2011, 19:15 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by leveller
Quote:
Originally Posted by Snips
And your point was?

Snips, looks to me like your itching ... why not just scratch it?

I don't have an itch at all. Do you?

Back on topic.

You can't expect the many industries out there to change their operating system and hardware for something that is some cases would not manage the level of demand needed on the hardware and software.

As an example, take any usual accountancy office. They are running Windows XP on a system installed 12 months ago. The server is running SBS2008. (Don't get me started on why this is the set up) The main applications on each PC is Outlook, occassional Excel, Word, Iris, Sage and a BT communication application linked to the phone system.

Could any of these programs run smoothly on the iPad. You could probably say yes but only one at a time and in some cases would probably lag. In almost every case, everyone of those programs will be running at the same time and in cases more than one version with multiple client accounts open. An iPad couldn't cope with that.

In order for this to be done "in the cloud" which I think the author was trying to get at and just using an iPad to access it. These offices with say 15 personnel would still have to fork at a hell of alot of cash for servers or cloud hosting costs that given this example, they wont need to change for a good few years anyway.
Canon 1st January 2011, 19:39 Quote
Center tags in the first image caption need fixing.
M7ck 1st January 2011, 19:45 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Snips
I don't have an itch at all. Do you?

Back on topic.

You can't expect the many industries out there to change their operating system and hardware for something that is some cases would not manage the level of demand needed on the hardware and software.

As an example, take any usual accountancy office. They are running Windows XP on a system installed 12 months ago. The server is running SBS2008. (Don't get me started on why this is the set up) The main applications on each PC is Outlook, occassional Excel, Word, Iris, Sage and a BT communication application linked to the phone system.

Could any of these programs run smoothly on the iPad. You could probably say yes but only one at a time and in some cases would probably lag. In almost every case, everyone of those programs will be running at the same time and in cases more than one version with multiple client accounts open. An iPad couldn't cope with that.

In order for this to be done "in the cloud" which I think the author was trying to get at and just using an iPad to access it. These offices with say 15 personnel would still have to fork at a hell of alot of cash for servers or cloud hosting costs that given this example, they wont need to change for a good few years anyway.

FFS have you even read the article?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Article
Suggesting that the iPad might be the future of computing needs a heck of a lot of explanation, both in defining my terms and moving beyond the iPad’s current incarnation as a mobile device.

and
Quote:
Originally Posted by Article
Here’s the crux of my thought – imagine a PC that doesn’t fail, yet is cool, fun and easy to use. That’s the iPad, but not in its current form.

and
Quote:
Originally Posted by Artcle
Bearing in mind that any ‘iPC’ device wouldn’t be aimed at enthusiast-level bit-tech readers, but rather the other 80 per cent of PC users, do you think a desktop-based iPad-like PC would make sense?

We are NOT talking about the current iPads capabilities.
sausages 1st January 2011, 20:58 Quote
I would like to think that pads are the future of computing, but I find it hard to believe. I think they will be the future for most people, but I think enthusiasts and gamers are going to be using full size PC's for distant future. Graphics cards are so huge, and proper cooling comes as the cost of space too. Personally I don't mind that all. My PC is enormous but I wanted it to be like that. It's easy to fit stuff in, and once it's all set up, I leave it behind my desk and never look at it again. I have a long HDMI lead out to an HDTV so I can use it as comfortably as a console but it's far more powerful and can do anything.

The only thing I personally would ever want, is a better way to control my PC from bed or from a couch. Think about lying in bed with movies or TV episodes playing on the PC, I need a way to click the next one in the folder, or to briefly alt tab to firefox to check my email. An iPad type device with no display would be perfect, just a pad that acts as a controller for my PC. That's what I want.

As for OS's, I think Microsoft need to up their game once and for all. It's time they came up with a version of windows that puts to rest these contenders. If for example, with Windows 8, you could choose different installs - HTPC, Mobile device, office PC, home PC, gamer/enthusiast, or something along those lines, I think it would be a big deal. They could refine all the important functions of Windows down to several easily press-able touch screen buttons and that's that. People could install it on their tablet PC's and it would be as easy to use as an iPad, but without all the limitations.
serial_ 1st January 2011, 22:39 Quote
I sure as hell hope it isn't the future of computing. I'll have to get all emo and start cutting if that ever happens.

I'm sorry, but the iPad innovated what, exactly? Finger painting? So far the guy in my office that has and actually uses his iPad only ever uses it to fingerpaint. He draws little cartoons during meetings depicting the company on fire and then tucks it back into his 3-ring and I never see it again until the next meeting.

If that's the future of computing then please put me down.
serial_ 1st January 2011, 22:41 Quote
Besides, market research shows Android violating the iPhone like a bad prison rape scene from AHX. I'd be more ok with an Android future, but I don't think anything will be replacing our PCs and laptops anytime soon.
M7ck 1st January 2011, 23:12 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by serial_
Besides, market research shows Android violating the iPhone like a bad prison rape scene from AHX. I'd be more ok with an Android future, but I don't think anything will be replacing our PCs and laptops anytime soon.

Source for market research?
Zombie 1st January 2011, 23:25 Quote
iPad... no. iPhone? maybe...

With mobile processors catching up with those used in laptops & desktops it won't be long before the computing power within the humble smart phone will be enough for the vast majority of users, you then just drop it in a dock at home and you have your desktop, or a portable dock with integrated keyboard & monitor to replace a laptop.

The big worry would be losing data, but cloud storage / sync will overcome that worry.

Apple and Google are already headed down this road, MS will surely follow. I give it 3 years before the first device of this type is launched.
Snips 1st January 2011, 23:26 Quote
"We are NOT talking about the current iPads capabilities."

Yes he started to say that but then went on to preach about the current iPad and then future possible Apple products.

Can't we then say "Well what about this part of the huge whole he left in the costing and possible performance needed?"

or "Why just Apple products?" and "Not every office environment has the budget of an American prime time TV series based in an office environment and hit a sweet sponsership deal with Apple and the cost of the Apple products and servers would probably cost one of the staff salary for the year and more so we wont hire them?"

If you meant for this article to be a light hearted discussion point then fine, say so. If it's the authors personal opinion or the opinion of Bit-Tech, then also say so.
Nexxo 1st January 2011, 23:52 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zombie
iPad... no. iPhone? maybe...

With mobile processors catching up with those used in laptops & desktops it won't be long before the computing power within the humble smart phone will be enough for the vast majority of users, you then just drop it in a dock at home and you have your desktop, or a portable dock with integrated keyboard & monitor to replace a laptop.

The big worry would be losing data, but cloud storage / sync will overcome that worry.

Apple and Google are already headed down this road, MS will surely follow. I give it 3 years before the first device of this type is launched.

Now you're talking. I think it will be closer to five years though. Then again, it could be a hybrid device, with the smartphone acting as personal storage and roaming profile and the base unit offering extra grunt.
jrs77 2nd January 2011, 01:05 Quote
I don't even think that it takes 3 or even 5 years.

Google with it's ChromeOS and it's CR-48 is actually doing exactly this cloud-computing-thingy and it is pretty much ready to be produced for the market by the end of this year.

The upcoming APUs from AMD and the ARM-15 will increase the number of slim low-power devices capable of HD-media etc.

I'd say that we'll see this new era starting in 2012 allready based on ChromeOS and iOS. M$ will be struggeling imho to compete with Google and Apple as they woke up too late to see what people are asking for. They wasted a whole 5 years with Vista tbh.
Nexxo 2nd January 2011, 01:12 Quote
Probably. I was thinking of mobile devices powerful enough to function as the core of a desktop. Hybrids would be possible now. But thinking of the CR-48 I think you could be right.
Gravemind123 2nd January 2011, 01:18 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nexxo
Probably. I was thinking of mobile devices powerful enough to function as the core of a desktop. Hybrids would be possible now. But thinking of the CR-48 I think you could be right.

On this subject one thing I've really wanted is a tablet that can attach itself as the screen in a laptop style shell. The shell would hold a battery of its own which can charge the tablet as it is hooked in, it would give you proper keyboard and mouse, better speakers, etc..

The problem is that a tablet OS would not be optimal for keyboard and mouse, so the OS would likely want to have a slightly modified skin for docked mode. Sort of like an alternate launcher on android that makes things set up in a more optimal way for a mouse instead of touchscreen.

Maybe I'm the only one who wants this, but it gives you the option of tablet use for watching video or web browsing on the couch and then as a laptop for when you need to type a long document, use spreadsheets or tasks that work better with mice. Then I could actually see a tablet replacing my laptop.
Nexxo 2nd January 2011, 01:32 Quote
Several companies have been chasing this holy grail, Asus amongst them. The problem has been that they approached it from the wrong end: they designed a desktop unit that had to be able to function with the mobile constraints of a tablet, rather than a tablet that can scale up to function as a more powerful and flexible desktop unit. Hence the love for Windows 7 which is totally unsuited to a mobile device.

Enter Google Chrome, which happily works on both because it is a lean OS, relying on the heavy lifting to be done on the cloud. Microsoft is thinking in the same direction. Apple is slower to catch on because its focus is on a different type of on-line service at the moment, but when it realises that all it needs to do is shift that focus a bit... Competitors beware.

We could have the best if all worlds. Thin clients of office drones running a Google Chrome-type OS with a local cloud/on-line service infrastructure being managed on more elaborate hardware by the company's IT department.
Dietlama 2nd January 2011, 04:58 Quote
I would even go as far as to say that people who are in the Bit-Tech readership will see their computers replace or at least augmented by the iPad. The future desktop replacement that evolves from the current product will be something unlike the desktops we are familiar with today. So, I don't think that a mouse and keyboard are necessarily the only answer to the content creation problem. Would I want to write a novel in the current Pages app with the current keyboard implementation? Absolutely not. However, the problem there is with typing accuracy, speed, and precision of text selection. It is. More likely that a better method for a touch computer is possible than to see Apple (or hopefully anyone) remain attached to the mouse and keyboard.

Also, to those who cite the "gorilla arm" situation of a touchscreen desktop, consider this: a touchscreen is actually more comfortable for both reading and manipulation if it is set at an angle, lectern style. This negates the reach up and touch problem.
Cthippo 2nd January 2011, 08:30 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gravemind123
On this subject one thing I've really wanted is a tablet that can attach itself as the screen in a laptop style shell. The shell would hold a battery of its own which can charge the tablet as it is hooked in, it would give you proper keyboard and mouse, better speakers, etc..

The problem is that a tablet OS would not be optimal for keyboard and mouse, so the OS would likely want to have a slightly modified skin for docked mode. Sort of like an alternate launcher on android that makes things set up in a more optimal way for a mouse instead of touchscreen.

Maybe I'm the only one who wants this, but it gives you the option of tablet use for watching video or web browsing on the couch and then as a laptop for when you need to type a long document, use spreadsheets or tasks that work better with mice. Then I could actually see a tablet replacing my laptop.

That's what the word "tablet" used to mean. It was a laptop with a screen that flipped around to act like a pad. They've been around for at least a decade, but never really caught on. Hopefully with the new pads becoming popular they might make a comeback.

My issue with the smartphones is size. For me, they're too small to browse the web and something large enough to use as a computer is too big to carry around in a case on your belt. I have a smartphone, but all I use it for is to call, text, and occasionally take a picture. I can't imagine trying to browse the web, much less try to write a long email, on that thing.

Something else we haven't mentioned, but is driving uptake in this area is e-readers. They're pads with very simple OSs that only do a few things, but are stable and do them well. Many of them already browse the web, and so a few more applications (and color screens) and we're pretty much at the device we're talking about.

I don't see MS ever being a player in this market. They simpley come with too much baggage in terms of customer expectations. We all know what Windows is, a simplified version of Windows would be considered gimped. For this to really catch on is going to require a new OS that people associate with this philosophy of "limited, closed, and just works" from the outset.
eddtox 2nd January 2011, 10:36 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gravemind123
On this subject one thing I've really wanted is a tablet that can attach itself as the screen in a laptop style shell. The shell would hold a battery of its own which can charge the tablet as it is hooked in, it would give you proper keyboard and mouse, better speakers, etc..

The problem is that a tablet OS would not be optimal for keyboard and mouse, so the OS would likely want to have a slightly modified skin for docked mode. Sort of like an alternate launcher on android that makes things set up in a more optimal way for a mouse instead of touchscreen.

Maybe I'm the only one who wants this, but it gives you the option of tablet use for watching video or web browsing on the couch and then as a laptop for when you need to type a long document, use spreadsheets or tasks that work better with mice. Then I could actually see a tablet replacing my laptop.

Have you seen the Asus EEE Pad 121? Bit did a story on it a few months ago, and you can find my thoughts and some nice pictures at http://elepedus.blogspot.com
Nexxo 2nd January 2011, 13:21 Quote
Yeah, that is all very tasty, but:
-- it hasn't been released yet (or should I say: still?)
-- in fact, the 'prototype' is a mock-up, not a working item;
-- even Asus' "working" tablet prototypes showed a mocked-up desktop, not a functional one.

Basically, issues like performance, battery life and cost still have not been worked out. There is a reason why Apple chose the path it did. It did not simply decide to recreate a MacBook Air with a touch screen but without keyboard, which it could have done very easily, as OSX has native handwriting recognition support. The reason Apple didn't is because it would have had a dismal battery life and sky-high price. People would have quite reasonably decided that for that price they might as well get a decent laptop instead of a crippled tablet.

Tablets are supposed to sit between smartphones and laptops --not just in function, but also in price. They are supposed to be an improved version of a netbook more suited to specific tasks, and a cheaper alternative to a full-fledged laptop that would not be used to its full potential if used only for these same tasks --which, moreover, it would not be ideally suited to either. Perhaps Google will get this too and the next Chrome release may be on a Tablet.
eddtox 2nd January 2011, 14:07 Quote
Once again, you're right, Nexxo. When I first heard of the EP121 I was really excited and that's why I blogged about it, but that was over 6 months ago and the device still isn't out. They say it should come in q1 of 2011, but I suspect it will be too little, too late.
DarkBanana 2nd January 2011, 14:20 Quote
"iPad Maxi"

... or a MaxiPad! (sorry it had to be said)

I normally feel Steve Jobs is far too dictatorial but after getting an iPad as a Christmas/graduation present, I have to say it's far more useful than I thought it would be and could easily replace my laptop.

If you could dock it to a keyboard and mouse, I suspect it could easily act as a computer for 95% of people.
jrs77 2nd January 2011, 14:28 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by DarkBanana
...

If you could dock it to a keyboard and mouse, I suspect it could easily act as a computer for 95% of people.

There you go -> http://www.apple.com/ipad/accessories/ ;)

With Jailbreak you can aswell connect and use a Bluetooth-mouse -> http://www.redmondpie.com/control-ipad-with-magic-mouse-9140743/ and I think Apple will implement this possibility in the future natively aswell.
Lazy_Amp 2nd January 2011, 16:01 Quote
I'd still need 2+ monitors to work effectively :\ But then again I understand that watching internet videos is the most taxing thing most people do at work.

I realize that BitTech editors and readership aren't too high on cloud computing, but yes, that does allow users of these tablet desktops to supplement poor performance at times with some additional power.
eddtox 2nd January 2011, 19:57 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by jrs77
There you go -> http://www.apple.com/ipad/accessories/ ;)

With Jailbreak you can aswell connect and use a Bluetooth-mouse -> http://www.redmondpie.com/control-ipad-with-magic-mouse-9140743/ and I think Apple will implement this possibility in the future natively aswell.

I didn't think iOS supported a pointer :S
Nexxo 2nd January 2011, 20:06 Quote
It even supports handwriting recognition, although it's not part of the core install.
jrs77 2nd January 2011, 21:03 Quote
iOS is just an OS as any other OS basically, so pointer-support is something that can be easily implemented as seen allready.
The question is, if there's a demand for it and when enough people demand it, then Apple sure will implement it natively at some point, like they've implemented the Bluetooth-keyboard support with iOS 4.0.

A jailbroken iOS can be pretty much used like a usual, but very basic MacOS. It does support external storages, voice-control, handwriting, etc etc. And as jailbreaking is basically nothing else then unlocking possible features, well... you got the idea I guess ;)
Snips 2nd January 2011, 23:24 Quote
This topic is now offically dead. In it's current state the iPad would not fill this void (the void wasn't there in the first place). Basically, if the void appeared then more than likely, there would be a Microsoft(cheaper) alternative which would be adopted by the business community, which leaves this Apple lovein mute anyway.

So what was the point of this topic again?
jrs77 3rd January 2011, 00:14 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Snips
This topic is now offically dead. In it's current state the iPad would not fill this void (the void wasn't there in the first place). Basically, if the void appeared then more than likely, there would be a Microsoft(cheaper) alternative which would be adopted by the business community, which leaves this Apple lovein mute anyway.

So what was the point of this topic again?

The point of the topic is about having a slim and simple OS running on low-power hardware in the future that can handle most of the tasks the majority of people do with a PC (e.g. office-suite, internet/eMail, media playback).

This topic isn't specifically about the iPad, which still lot's of people don't understand apparently.
Nexxo 3rd January 2011, 00:46 Quote
And whether people understand or not, and like it or not, that is where the future is going. Inexorably. And it will be Google (Android and Chrome), Apple (iOS) and Linux variants (Meego and Ubuntu Mobile) that will be best placed for it, not Microsoft which pitches to a different market. Pity, because it has some good ideas in the area of cloud connectivity.
sinner666999 3rd January 2011, 03:35 Quote
For simple computing purposes like email and office software I think an iPad would work just fine, for most. Where the problem could/would come in is with people in my line of work: call center. Where it is proven having dual screens increases productivity. Having just one 10" to 15" screen would actually slow me down and not allow me to do a lot of the multi-tasking that is required while on the phone with a customer. For the average desk jockey reading/creating documents and emails it would be fine.

Heck, I'd be estatic if we ditched the computer case and went with some kind of all-in-one plus an additional monitor. Touchscreen? No thanks.
Cthippo 3rd January 2011, 09:39 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by sinner666999
For simple computing purposes like email and office software I think an iPad would work just fine, for most. Where the problem could/would come in is with people in my line of work: call center. Where it is proven having dual screens increases productivity. Having just one 10" to 15" screen would actually slow me down and not allow me to do a lot of the multi-tasking that is required while on the phone with a customer. For the average desk jockey reading/creating documents and emails it would be fine.

Heck, I'd be estatic if we ditched the computer case and went with some kind of all-in-one plus an additional monitor. Touchscreen? No thanks.

Yeah, it's not going to be the right answer for everyone. I'm with you, I couldn't live without my 3 monitors, even just for web browsing. Then again, we're not the people who would benefit from this kind of tech, so that's OK.

Something that I think is getting lost in this discussion is the fact that it isn't about us. We're not the ones who would benefit from this kind of thing. I think this gets to be one of the problems is that people who make OSs are geeks and think like geeks and so want it to do everything under the sun (including play Crysis). The OS we're talking about here needs to do about 10 things, have the possibility of doing more, but is fundamentally limited. It needs to make sacrifices in order to be secure and user proof. Once again, this is the OS for grandma and the office drones, not for us.

EDIT: Welcome to the forums, BTW ;)
Nexxo 3rd January 2011, 12:03 Quote
It isn't about us. It isn't even about the iPad. It is about having leaner, specific-tasks-geared closed garden OS. That would not limit the number of monitors used. It would not have to be touch screen only. You can still have all the input and output devices you want.

It seems to me that this presents a paradigm shift that some people taking part in this debate appear unable to conceive of --or perhaps they just did not read the article. You don't have to think it's a good idea, but you have to be able to understand it to challenge it in a meaningful way.
Xir 3rd January 2011, 14:11 Quote
As with everything Apple, it's a question of price/performance.
An easier-to-use system would be preferable, but would you buy it at twice the price of a "normal" one?
For basic, or home use for most people, a bit bigger, beefier Pad would be fine, and yes, probably a lot easier to use than any current notebook. (provided a keyboard is used)
Actually, the current iPad would perform as well or better than your average netbook now.
I'd like one, really.

But as long as I can buy two netbooks for one iPad, I'l learn to live with the downsides, thank you.

And I don't suppose a larger, more capable device would have a better price/performance ratio.
jrs77 3rd January 2011, 14:30 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Xir
As with everything Apple, it's a question of price/performance.
An easier-to-use system would be preferable, but would you buy it at twice the price of a "normal" one?
For basic, or home use for most people, a bit bigger, beefier Pad would be fine, and yes, probably a lot easier to use than any current notebook. (provided a keyboard is used)
Actually, the current iPad would perform as well or better than your average netbook now.
I'd like one, really.

But as long as I can buy two netbooks for one iPad, I'l learn to live with the downsides, thank you.

And I don't suppose a larger, more capable device would have a better price/performance ratio.

Still the question is not about Apple and their price-politics. I'ts about the OS in general (including Google, Android, Windows, Apple, etc) and how an OS will look like in the future. The hardware is totally uninteresting at this point.
Nexxo 3rd January 2011, 14:53 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Xir
As with everything Apple, it's a question of price/performance.
An easier-to-use system would be preferable, but would you buy it at twice the price of a "normal" one?
For basic, or home use for most people, a bit bigger, beefier Pad would be fine, and yes, probably a lot easier to use than any current notebook. (provided a keyboard is used)
Actually, the current iPad would perform as well or better than your average netbook now.
I'd like one, really.

But as long as I can buy two netbooks for one iPad, I'l learn to live with the downsides, thank you.

And I don't suppose a larger, more capable device would have a better price/performance ratio.

It is not about Apple! It is about whether having leaner, specific-tasks-geared closed garden OS on leaner hardware is likely to become prevalent in the future, because that is how most people use their PCs.
Xir 3rd January 2011, 16:00 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nexxo
It is about whether having leaner, specific-tasks-geared closed garden OS on leaner hardware is likely to become prevalent in the future, because that is how most people use their PCs.
At the same price, yes.
At a higher price, no.
:D
eddtox 3rd January 2011, 16:21 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Xir
At the same price, yes.
At a higher price, no.
:D

The fact that apple's "overpriced" products sell as well as they do demonstrates that a significant number of people are willing to pay a premium for that sort of experience.
Cthippo 3rd January 2011, 20:08 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by eddtox
The fact that apple's "overpriced" products sell as well as they do demonstrates that a significant number of people are willing to pay a premium for that sort of experience.

This.

The iPod, iPhone and iPad each continue to dominate in their area of function. Sure, they were first out the gate, but that's not always an indicator for success. What they do all share is a relatively simple UI like we've been discussing. Also, look at all the hackintoshes out there. People are willing to go to a lot of work to get the Mac experience, though perhaps not on the Mac hardware.

Again, this isn't about Macs, but it does show that people will pay more for a "simple and just works" technology.
Nexxo 4th January 2011, 01:15 Quote
Moreover it is how all technology has evolved: creation, industrialisation, sophistication, commercialisation, domestication.

The first cars were tools: lorries for transport of goods. Private individuals could not afford them and had no use for them. They were too big and required too much specialist knowledge to operate and maintain. Cars then evolved and became smaller, cheaper and easier to maintain. The Model T came out. Private ownership was now possible. Then cars became even simpler --low maintenance and turn-key in use; run-arounds for general domestic use. Those who want it, still can buy performance or off-road vehicles but most people want something reliable, simple and economical that goes from A to B.

Powertools? Same story. At first limited to industry, they became available for domestic use in the early 20th Century. The first powertool was a big electric motor mounted on a bench in the garage, that you hooked different adapters to. Then came specific individual powertools. Now you get rechargeable units that measure up and tell you whether you're going straight.

Radio? Same story. From make-shift devices that you had to build yourself and twiddle with wires and spools to tune in, to table-top boxes with an on-switch, volume button and clear tuning dial, to the digital units that require a simple (autotuned) button press to select your station.

Computers are like the bench mounted electric motor or crystal radio set. They are now evolving into cheaper, easier and more convenient units geared to specific, most common applications.
Xir 4th January 2011, 09:55 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by eddtox
The fact that apple's "overpriced" products sell as well as they do demonstrates that a significant number of people are willing to pay a premium for that sort of experience.
I was told not to write the name "Apple":D
And we were talking about
Quote:
having leaner, specific-tasks-geared closed garden OS on leaner hardware is likely to become prevalent in the future, because that is how most people use their PCs.
And while there certainly is a significant number of people willing to part with their cash for the experience, they're not the majority of PC users.
For the majority of PC users to switch to a leaner OS on leaner Hardware, the price has to come down.
eddtox 4th January 2011, 11:40 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Xir

For the majority of PC users to switch to a leaner OS on leaner Hardware, the price has to come down.
I'm not sure that's the case. As has already been mentioned, most people couldn't care less about the hardware in their devices. All they care about it what the hardware does and how well.

As long as the hardware is adequate to support the experience and applications they want, that's all they care about.
Cthippo 4th January 2011, 12:35 Quote
I wonder if both MS and Apple have too much emotional baggage attached to them to be the leaders in this field. Android / Chrome OS, on the other hand, may be perfectly positioned for it.
eddtox 4th January 2011, 12:44 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cthippo
I wonder if both MS and Apple have too much emotional baggage attached to them to be the leaders in this field. Android / Chrome OS, on the other hand, may be perfectly positioned for it.

The only problem with Chromos is that it's cloud-only, and people may have some qualms with that for a while yet.
Cthippo 4th January 2011, 13:03 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by eddtox
The only problem with Chromos is that it's cloud-only, and people may have some qualms with that for a while yet.

I think the recent Wikileaks experiences have caused people to start asking some hard questions about cloud dependent computing. What happens if Google (or whoever) decided my data violates their terms of service? If the remote server goes down, or even if I just lose connectivity on my end, am I unable to work on anything?

I think these kinds of questions are going to be barriers to acceptance and so Google will end up implementing local support until people get more comfortable with the cloud.
Nexxo 4th January 2011, 14:00 Quote
I think that you are right that (at the moment) Microsoft carries too much baggage. Judging by thus thread alone Apple certainly does. But most muggles' experience of Apple is through iOS driven products already. Possibly Microsoft can pull a similar hat trick with Windows Mobile 7 --if it wides up and learns to market it more aggressively. Zune easily equals iPod in quality. But outside the US almost nobody has heard of it yet.

And I also think you are right about the Cloud. For cloud-computing to take off we'd have to have more ubiquitous and cheaper data services, and ones that are not compromised by political or commercial interests. It needs to be thought of in the same way as utilities; nobody would accept their water or electricity being turned off because the government did not like how you were using it. This is a shift in my thinking: I used to think that treating broadband as a human right or quality of life issue was pretentious --I considered it a luxury, like Sky TV, not a life necessity like water, gas, electricity. Since Wikileaks I am reconsidering fast.
Xir 4th January 2011, 15:07 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by eddtox
I'm not sure that's the case. As has already been mentioned, most people couldn't care less about the hardware in their devices. All they care about it what the hardware does and how well.

As long as the hardware is adequate to support the experience and applications they want, that's all they care about.
Correct, but that also works the other way. They don't care about the hardware, but they do care about the price...
If I want to surf, and on the one hand I have a device that's a little clumsy, and on the other a neat device that gives me a little smoother experience. Which one to buy (for the masses?)
At near identical cost, it would be a no brainer.
At twice the cost, only the professionals, the wealthy and the stylish take the smoother device.

Which are still al lot of people, but not the majority
Zombie 6th January 2011, 12:49 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zombie
iPad... no. iPhone? maybe...

With mobile processors catching up with those used in laptops & desktops it won't be long before the computing power within the humble smart phone will be enough for the vast majority of users, you then just drop it in a dock at home and you have your desktop, or a portable dock with integrated keyboard & monitor to replace a laptop.

The big worry would be losing data, but cloud storage / sync will overcome that worry.

Apple and Google are already headed down this road, MS will surely follow. I give it 3 years before the first device of this type is launched.

Wow, well I was a bit off with the 3 years idea...

Motorola Atrix android phone released yesterday does exactly what I suggested above.
mediapcAddict 7th January 2011, 11:08 Quote
Sorry but i'm currently leaning back on a comfy chair reading this on a 24 inch screen
- serious multi tasking and work computing is better on a large screen.

Most of the benfits listed are OS based anyway.
"doesn’t fail, yet is cool, fun and easy to use"
"password-protect or remove the App Store, and you’ll have a locked down system"
"PCs that can’t crash, or have dodgy software installed on them"
Microsoft I'm looking at you!!

Add a keyboard, mouse and decent screen and you're very near a pc/laptop with a good OS and a touch screen.

Apple may have started an ease of use revolution (and that is something many software writers could learn from) but windows/pc can't be beaten on software/hardware choice and flexability.
Nexxo 8th January 2011, 13:18 Quote
And again: It is not about Apple. It is about whether a simpler application-specific OS is better than a complicated OS the flexibility of which is hardly ever exploited by most ordinary users anyway.

Hence the benefits listed are OS based. It is a discussion about the philosophy of the OS, not about Apple.
leveller 9th January 2011, 00:01 Quote
By the end of 2011 we will have seen around 100 variations of tablets. According to Bloomberg analysts. I would say for investment analysts to be going gaga over tablets is a sure sign that there really is money to be made.
nukeman8 9th January 2011, 01:14 Quote
Arcticstoat wrote apple or ipad in just about every line in the blog, its hard for people not to go on about apple.

Im not to knowledged about how apple runs things but from what i have heard you can only install what they have officially supported/approved?
If so that would be a nightmare for a business, you would be relying on another company to choose what programs you can use.

Out of curiosity does anyone know if the percentage of mac users has gone up since the iphone/ipod/ipad boom? Just wondering if all the apple rage recently has helped their actual computer user base count.
jrs77 9th January 2011, 01:44 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by nukeman8
Nexxo you wrote apple or ipad in just about every line in the blog, its hard for people not to go on about apple when you go and do that lol

Im not to knowledged about how apple runs things but from what i have heard you can only install what they have officially supported/approved?
If so that would be a nightmare for a business, you would be relying on another company to choose what programs you can use.

Out of curiosity does anyone know if the percentage of mac users has gone up since the iphone/ipod/ipad boom? Just wondering if all the apple rage recently has helped their actual computer user base count.

First of all, it wasn't Nexxo who wrote the article, but arcticstoat.

Second. If you read the article and understnad it, then the iPad is just used as an example, becuase it's the only kind of hardware currently on the market that comes close to a device described in the article. It's easier for people to understand this way instead of trying to describe a low-powered device with a slimmed down OS.

Third. You can jailbreak the iPad and install software you've not obtained through the AppStore, which allows for basically any kind of software you want.

Last but not least. The amount of people, who allready bought an iPad shows, that there's alot of interest in a device like that and the netbooks shown at CES running Android are basically just as limited as the iPad with it's iOS.
Google want to go even further with it's ChromeOS and only allow software to be used online (e.g. cloud-computing). You don't install software anymore, but only buy the license to unlock the webservice to use the software which is running on Google-servers.

And now, with Google getting alot of applause for it's beta-model CR-48 currently out in the wilds, I think that we can easily assume, that this will be the future for the masses, who don't use their PC for work or for gaming, but only office, internet and media-playback.

The people here on bit-tech are nerds. We aren't the 80-90% of the whole endconsumer-market these new low-powered and slimmed down systems are ment for, but my sister or my mother for example will love these devices and their easy-to-use OS/software.
nukeman8 9th January 2011, 02:04 Quote
Ah my mistake, thanks for the correction.

After rereading it all it seems that the ipad is far far off what is being spoken about and everybody seems to be talking about 3 different things.
The ipad/tablets aren't the future just the next stepping stone to whatever is next, and i bet whatever you want is looks or acts nothing like an ipad.
jrs77 9th January 2011, 02:07 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by nukeman8
Ah my mistake, thanks for the correction.

After rereading it all it seems that the ipad is far far off what is being spoken about and everybody seems to be talking about 3 different things.
The ipad/tablets aren't the future just the next stepping stone to whatever is next, and i bet whatever you want is looks or acts nothing like an ipad.

If you want to know more about how the future of computing for the masses will look like, then look at this....

http://www.google.com/chromeos/pilot-program-cr48.html

http://www.chromium.org/chromium-os

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0QRO3gKj3qw This video is telling!

Pair this with touchscreen-technology and/or tablets and you get the idea.
nukeman8 9th January 2011, 02:25 Quote
Im gonna have to read up about cloud computing in general before i can comment much but from what i know i don't like the sound of it much with the current state of the UK's net connection.

Anyway cheers for the links you got me interested, off to have a read ;)
eddtox 9th January 2011, 11:37 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by nukeman8
Im not to knowledged about how apple runs things but from what i have heard you can only install what they have officially supported/approved?
If so that would be a nightmare for a business, you would be relying on another company to choose what programs you can use.

I think businesses can join the enterprise developer program and create/load their own iOS apps without going through Apple's Appstore.

/trivia
Nexxo 9th January 2011, 12:20 Quote
And businesses are going to love cloud computing --especially as they can create their own cloud: control what the employee accesses on their computer, and do away with local storage --which means that if the MoD or the NHS loses another 600 laptops, there is no compromising data on them. Just un-register the stolen device from cloud access, and it's worthless.
leveller 9th January 2011, 13:35 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by eddtox
I think businesses can join the enterprise developer program and create/load their own iOS apps without going through Apple's Appstore.

/trivia

Very true. 2000 iPads recently sold to a school and you can bet the kids won't be playing Angry Birds on them!
echeb 10th January 2011, 23:35 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by leveller
By the end of 2011 we will have seen around 100 variations of tablets. According to Bloomberg analysts. I would say for investment analysts to be going gaga over tablets is a sure sign that there really is money to be made.

and do you remember the last time Wallstreet went crazy over something technical...?!

But for me Motorola Atrix sounds perfect with its laptop part running full FF 3.6 and parts of GNOME as long as its on Tesco mobile and has a steam chat app.
Javerh 11th January 2011, 06:46 Quote
The future of home computers is tablets? No. Most muggles are happy with a TV connected to a mouse and a keyboard.
M7ck 11th January 2011, 09:00 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Javerh
The future of home computers is tablets? No. Most muggles are happy with a TV connected to a mouse and a keyboard.

Read the article, it's not about hardware.
leveller 29th January 2011, 22:29 Quote
I just paired my wireless keyboard with my iPad. I didn't know I could do that until I read T3 today.

They also showed a stand that perfectly resembles the one used on the iMac. So in effect, the iPad turns into a mini iMac with external keyboard ...

Awesome stuff.
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