After all this fanfare about Apple coming out with a Tablet, we now find out that they didn’t. The iPad is an appropriate name, but to call it a tablet is inaccurate. What makes a Tablet is not just a touch screen, but the ability to do handwriting recognition. One should be able to write on the screen with a stylus. However, the Apple iPad does not have any handwriting recognition. None, Zip, Zero, Zilch, Nada. What this means is that the iPad is actually a netbook without the keyboard. How very disappointing.
It is true that the iPad does have multi-touch, but that is not the same thing. Okay, so you can tap on the screen to open files, navigate, and resize pictures. But the majority of people anticipating the release of the iPad have been looking forward to taking the iPad into a conference room and writing notes on it and saving it as a file. Students have envisioned taking it to class and keeping all their notes from their classes on one device instead of having different spiral bound notebooks for each different class. Business owners and Managers have been waiting to open a contract on it, write notes in the margins, save it, then forward it to the other decision makers that need to see it. Travelers have been anticipating being able to receive a form or agreement that they have been waiting on via email, open it, sign it on the screen, save it, then email it back to the sender.
Now none of this is possible. There have been a couple rumors that people will develop an app for that. But seriously? C’mon Apple. That’s like making a smartphone that doesn’t make phone calls and telling the user base that someone will make an app for that.
This is a serious faux pas on Apple’s part. They could have taken the Tablet market by storm. Instead they will take the netbook market by a little windy. A major letdown for many would-be customers. I personally own a Tablet PC. It’s the convertible kind (the screen swivels and folds down), and yes…it does handwriting recognition. However, I had just about convinced myself to get an iPad to replace my Tablet PC which is a few years old. But now, I’m asking myself, “Why?” The iPad is cool, it’s new, it’s shiny, but it doesn’t do what a Tablet does. So it would really be like a netbook without a keyboard, and with a touchscreen.
One group of consumers that will enjoy it are those who have been trying to decide on an e-reader. The iPad will support e-books, and the one advantage that it has over current e-readers is that it does it in color. That’s nice. But at a price tag of $500 to $829, depending on features and storage space, it becomes a pretty expensive e-reader.
Don’t get me wrong, it has some nice functionality like automatic re-orientation, but not putting in the handwriting recognition is a huge market mistake. The blogosphere already has many people saying that they will not buy it until they see the handwriting app.
Suppliers of servers, PC’s, laptops, and other technology equipment are just like other companies. They want to sell as much as they can by the end of the year. As a result, prices often times start dropping in the last few months of the year. This is the time that businesses can really take advantage of great pricing on many essentials.
However, many business owners and managers do not realize this. A common phrase that is heard around this time is, “Well, let’s wait ‘till the beginning of the new year, then we’ll get started on the project, the upgrade, the expansion, the etc.” But waiting until the new year can cost you discounts that you will not receive in January. So if you are thinking about doing an upgrade, a replacement, or making any kind of new purchase, go ahead and do it between now and the end of December.
Admittedly, sometimes December can be a hard month to start big projects because of your people’s vacation schedules. So try to get the project going before the second week of December. If you truly must wait until the new year to begin the project, then the savvy thing to do is go ahead and make the hardware and software purchase now so you can take advantage of great pricing, Then begin the implementation when everyone comes back in the new year. But if you wait until first quarter to make your purchase, you miss out on a lot of savings.
According to a research report released Monday from DisplaySearch (via Lance Whitney of Crave), over 38 Million Netbooks shipped in the second quarter of 2009 alone. This has helped Netbooks capture a 22.2 % share of the portable PC market. I think I know why.
I have to say from personal experience, I think the reason that is happening is because they are cheap and simple. I had the pleasure of trying out an Acer One P531h netbook for a business trip last month. I left the hulking laptop behind and went totally with what the netbook could do. I have to say, I was surprised at how much it could do:
Have you ever been sitting on the couch or in bed, working leisurely on your HP laptop, then found yourself screaming in pain because your legs where on fire? Well HP wants to make sure this never happens to it's customers, as they recall 70,000 laptop batteries due to "..lithium-ion batteries overheating, posing a fire and burn hazard to consumers." Consumers should note that this is in no way an isolated issue with HP brand laptops. In fact, Dell and Sony have previously had massive recalls for simialr problems. The core of the problem lies with the battery manufactures. The following HP and Compaq notebook models may contain the recalled battery:
dv2000 dv2500 dv2700 dv6000 dv6500
dv6700 dv9000 dv9500 dv9700
A900 C700 F700 V3000 V3500
V3700 V6000 V6500 V6700
or Batteries that are subject to recall may contain the following bar codes:
Remedy: Consumers should immediately remove the recalled battery from their notebook computer and contact HP to determine if their battery is included in the recall and to request a free replacement battery. After removing the recalled battery from their notebook computer, consumers may use the AC adapter to power the computer until a replacement battery arrives. Consumers should only use batteries obtained from HP or an authorized reseller.
Hewlett Packard will soon begin to offer laptops that come with "Green" Sonata batteries. These new batteries will offer better performance and last longer than traditional batteries. The Enviro series of batteries will carry a three-year warranty, produced by Boston Power and are certified as "environment-friendly".
The Li-ion batteries are tested to perform consistently for three years, which can be as much as three times longer than our traditional laptop batteries. The Enviro series of battery also boasts a very short recharge time, they are said to charge from 0 - 80% capacity in 30 minutes.
As a consumer I see this as a win-win from HP. Not only do these batteries improve my laptop performance and the need to replace batteries, they also are a pat on the back to ol' Mother Earth.
The new HP battery will be priced around $149.99 and is slated to be available for 18 existing notebook models. HP offers a complete list of compatible models here, the Enviro series battery can be purchased from HP's website.