ComputerWorld Tablet Article Features RESCUECOM

Five Pieces of Advice on Tablets

Tablet Computers: Five Things You Need to Know

Computerworld: Agam Shah
March 25, 2010

Apple's iPad brings tablet computers back into the limelight but will these devices fulfill your needs?

They're not mini-laptops. Tablets are handheld devices with touch screens ranging in size from five to 10 inches. Also called "slates" by PC makers, they include touch interfaces that allow users to surf the Web, play games, view movies and read e-books. One celebrated example is Apple's iPad, which was announced in January and goes on sale this month. Makers expected to start shipping devices later this year include Dell and Hewlett-Packard.

They fill a gap. The rapid growth of mobile Internet and touch screens has created a new class of computing devices for consumers, says Phil McKinney, Hewlett-Packard's CTO. Tablets enable mobile access to online content like newspapers, movies and games. Apple CEO Steve Jobs surfed the Internet and watched a movie on the iPad while sitting on a couch at that tablet's unveiling. He said the iPad is meant to fill the void between the iPhone and the MacBook laptop.

They're Best for fun. Tablets have drawbacks compared to laptops (no keyboard, limited software support), but they work well as entertainment devices and e-book readers. Tablet users need to hang up their PC reliance, says Vira Chen, assistant product manager at Micro-Star International, a Taiwan-based PC maker. A lot of trial and error goes into perfecting these devices, and the most innovative company will win, Chen says.

They Travel Well. The device is mostly for casual use, but tablets could find some business uses. David Milman, CEO of computer repair firm Rescuecom, says that tablets could replace laptops for presentations and working on planes. "Certainly getting through security would be easier with an iPad than with a 4-pound laptop and all of its accessories," Milman says. But tablets could break if subjected to rigorous use, so they need to be designed to be more rugged.

Business uses are limited. Analysts say tablets will suit niche markets, like workers recording field data. But there are obstacles too, says Steve Rausch, director of information services at Gibson General Hospital in Princeton, Ind. "I know our doctors would love the iPad if it could run our software. It's light, comfortable, and something they're used to since they have iPhones," he says. Right now the iPad only runs applications from Apple's App Store

Google Reviews

Robert Snell
Robert Snell
in the last week
Great service. Easily understood, excellent support. Truly professional. A keeper ....
...Great service. Easily understood, excellent support. Truly professional. A keeper .... less
Laura Nagle
Laura Nagle
in the last week
A scammer was trying to convince me to get gift cards to pay him back for a typo in a transaction am
...A scammer was trying to convince me to get gift cards to pay him back for a typo in a transaction amount. Sound familiar? Result was a completely locked up computer. Contacted Rescuecom and they started work on the problem immediately. Ultimately we had to reset my computer. They were completely professional from start to finish. Did I mention they would not consider the request completed until my computer was up and running again. They are patient, kind, and thorough. I cannot recommend them highly enough. 10 stars!! less
Lee Loy
Lee Loy
in the last week
Very good service. Tech had me up and running in no time.
...Very good service. Tech had me up and running in no time. less
Erick Kroll
Erick Kroll
in the last week
RescueCom has been well worth the cost. I have used their services three or more times times and ha
...RescueCom has been well worth the cost. I have used their services three or more times times and have gotten very outstanding results and advice every time. If its a computer malfunction or a security issue, RescueCom has had my back every time. less
View all Google reviews

Featured in:


Feature Inthe New York TimesFOX NEWSUSA TodayComputer WorldCNNForbes