A lot of people are betting that 2010 will be the year of the tablet computer.
Of course, we've heard such predictions about tablets before. This time, the reasoning goes, is different, because the devices will have more sophisticated touch screens and consumers are more used to virtual keyboards. Most importantly, Apple just might be jumping into the fray.
Tablets, you may recall, are either laptops with a screen that twists and folds flat and uses a stylus or fingertip for input, or something more like an oversize iPod Touch that's used for tasks like checking e-mail, getting on the Web, and watching videos.
True, market researchers at DisplaySearch predict sales for all touch-screen devices will be growing from $3.5 billion this year to more than $6 billion by 2012. But if 2010 is going be the year of the tablet--meaning regular folks start buying these en masse--someone has to get it right.
So far, we're still waiting.
Toshiba, Archos, Fujitsu, and Lenovo have touch-screen tablets coming our way in the next few months, none of which should revolutionize our already established expectations of tablet PCs.… Read more