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Blog / 2011 / November / RIP Netbook, Long Live the Tablet!
November 30, 2011
RIP Netbook, Long Live the Tablet!
by Henry Kurkowski   |   0 COMMENTS

WiFi enabled devices come and go in cycles. Those that are used for personal computing purposes have certainly come a long way in size and convenience. The big three in features that consumers were looking for are battery life, portability and of course the absolute must have; WiFi. What looked to be a real winner for bundling in these features into one product was the introduction of the Netbook. Sales were more than brisk for this inexpensive device but now, a resurrection of it's popularity is unlikely. The Tablet has invaded the space previously held by the Netbook and the Tablet has become the dominant species.


Only a few short years ago the Netbook was taking the market by storm. It solved a lot of issues that consumers had with their big clunky laptops. They were inexpensive, smaller, had very good battery life and were very lightweight. In short they were a highly portable WiFi enabled device that you could still get some work done on while on the go. In truth, the modern mobile consumer does a great deal of their work while away from their home or office. So the under $400 netbook filled a need and fueled the need to be connected while on the go.


Then, in 2010 Apple brought the world the iPad. This took battery life, portability and size to a whole new level. Early tech adopters raved about it and this helped mainstream consumers feel more at ease with this new form. After all, the iPad lacked certain standards that most people were accustomed to having in a device and that had many skeptical at first. It had no USB port, no Ethernet port, and of course no physical keyboard. And yet today, these things are not a concern to most mobile consumers. The iPad paved the way for re-teaching people how to stay connected while on the go and while at their homes and offices. The introduction of the iPad truly changed the way we work and play. And it began training people to work more in the Cloud. (But that is the topic for a future post)


Since the debut of the iPad many other manufactures have tried to mimic its format. There are a number of devices out there now that many say match and in some cases surpass the iPad as a work tablet due to unique features as well as their ability to utilize Flash. One of my personal favorites is the Asus EEE Pad Transformer. Boasting expandable memory its speed and performance is extraordinary. Coupled with the optional docking station you can have a keyboard, 16 hours of battery life, additional ports and even more expandable memory. With the advent of all of these inexpensive and powerful tablets, the Netbook is singing its swan song.


So what does all of this mean? It means that tablets are here to stay for the foreseeable future and Netbooks will fade away. It means that consumers are being trained to be even more connected while on the go and that of course means the need for the further proliferation of WiFi connections to feed that online need. It also means that cloud computing is gaining traction and will explode in use in the coming years. In summation; Tablets + WiFi + The Cloud= Opportunity. 

filed under Technology as an amenity     tags netbook