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Can NetBooks & Tablets Co-Exist? 291

bsk_cw writes "According to Computerworld's Serdar Yegulalp, there has been a lot of talk about whether the iPad will take the place of the netbook — or, in fact, whether it will eat into the market share for more mainstream desktop and laptop computers. But, he continues, the iPad has a long way to go before it becomes a netbook killer — if only because it has created a space all its own."
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Can NetBooks & Tablets Co-Exist?

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  • Well... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Jorl17 ( 1716772 ) on Wednesday September 08, 2010 @10:34AM (#33508214)
    Can Cars and Motorcycles co-exist? How about motorbikes and bicycles?

    How about Laptop and Desktop computers?

    This is just silly.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday September 08, 2010 @10:37AM (#33508256)

    Gah. These summaries are getting worse and worse. Tablets have been around for awhile. Apple didn't invent the market with the iPad. They didn't invent the portable MP3 player with the ipod, nor did they invent the smart phone with the iphone. Those markets were established, and Apple developed a highly polished version that did well in that market. Tablets have been around, and they serve a slightly different niche from the netbook. They existed side by side before the iPad, and will continue to do so.

  • by BoRegardless ( 721219 ) on Wednesday September 08, 2010 @10:40AM (#33508302)

    iPads (& similar) can be THE computer for the rest of society who didn't want a laptop or other computer.


    Because it doesn't have to be treated and coddled like a "computer", at least if it is an iPad.

    I've seen both the very young and very old become adept in doing things they like in minutes.

  • by jedidiah ( 1196 ) on Wednesday September 08, 2010 @10:50AM (#33508414) Homepage

    > Tablets simply never sold before the way the iPad is selling. ...that's because all of the old tablets are real PCs and this new thing is an overgrown iPod.

    That is why id can be so cheap. You also have to gravely restrict what can be done with the device in order to cover up the fact that it's running hardware that's about 10 years old in PC terms.

    It's an Apple so you know the margins are very much in their favor. So they managed to take something cheap it up while still keeping it dressed up.

    It's a dinosaur with lipstick.

  • by gurps_npc ( 621217 ) on Wednesday September 08, 2010 @10:52AM (#33508450) Homepage
    The reason why the Ipad sold well is that people are willing to spend extra money to get an Apple. Partly due to fashion (they are 'cooler') and partly due to anti-virus fears, and partly due to a hatred of Windows.

    Apple did not 'figure out how to make one that sells', they just are the only company able to sell luxury PC products to average consumers and they realized that the reason tablets have not been sellign is that they are luxury PC products. So they moved in on a section of their own market that they had been ignoring.

    As for netbooks, people buy them for one reason - they don't cost a lot of money. Thnis is the exact OPPOSITE market from apple. Both products will continue to thrive. Apple will continue to add on new 'almost cheap enough for mass market' features while the tablets will continue to get cheaper and cheaper.

  • by Corporate Troll ( 537873 ) on Wednesday September 08, 2010 @10:56AM (#33508518) Homepage Journal

    Question: Can you actually use the iPad without having a computer which runs iTunes? If the answer to that is "Yes, you can", then you're right. Otherwise, the iPad is just an accessory to your real computer.

  • Re:Yes. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by kg8484 ( 1755554 ) on Wednesday September 08, 2010 @11:02AM (#33508592)

    I'm going to agree and disagree with your statement. Openness by itself won't do anything. However, openness leads to two things that will help tablets.

    First, it opens up the market to competition. While this may not help a company like Apple, Google's Android platform allows new companies to enter the market without having to write the entire software stack. This in turn should drive prices down.

    Secondly, an "open" platform allows more things to be done with it. Say some company is willing to sell me a netbook with a detachable keyboard (or a tablet with a clip-on keyboard that swivels), I would be more inclined to purchase that over a traditional netbook. Maybe not everyone, especially if it commands a hefty premium.

    The one advantage that netbooks currently have is that they can run Windows and hence all the software that is developed for Windows. Until someone makes a good office suite for Android, I don't see people flocking to tablets over netbooks any time soon.

  • by AmazingRuss ( 555076 ) on Wednesday September 08, 2010 @11:03AM (#33508610)

    The thing about a tablet is you have to hold the thing. You can't just set it on your lap, or on a table unless you prop it up somehow. A netbook has a built in kickstand that doubles as a keyboard and screen protector. Add a touch screen and you've pretty much eliminated any advantage a tablet has.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday September 08, 2010 @11:07AM (#33508656)

    I went on vacation earlier this year, and brought my netbook (a Lenovo S10e) just after the iPad came out.

    I kind of went through the list of things I was doing with it. Can I connect my camera memory card to an iPad? No. Can I charge my flip camera with an iPad? no. It was half the cost of an iPad. If I want to add memory or hard drive space I can do it relatively easily. The Lenovo also managed to survive a knife edge drop from 3 feet (roughly a meter) onto a tile floor while it was on with no damage other than a trim piece broke.

    Don't get me wrong, the iPad is a cool product. It has a much longer battery life and it is more portable for airplanes and car rides.

    With some of the other tablets coming out with either the Windows or Droid OS I'll have to see. Having USB ports would be a big thing to me for usability.

  • Re:Yes. (Score:4, Insightful)

    by jedidiah ( 1196 ) on Wednesday September 08, 2010 @11:14AM (#33508770) Homepage

    > I know this isn't a popular opinion here on Slashdot, but guess what? *Most people don't give a shit about "open" or "closed" hardware*

    Being "open" simply means that the hardware can do ANYTHING that any other PC can.

    Read the data you want.

    Access your data freely.

    Do trivial things that you're used to doing on a normal PC like PRINTING.

    A REAL COMPUTER does anything that anyone can imagine. A glorified iPod does only what Apple allows.

    It's amazing that anyone actually defends this nonsense.

  • by Arkham ( 10779 ) on Wednesday September 08, 2010 @11:14AM (#33508772)

    You can actually have your iPad activated at the Apple store, and never connect it to a computer again. Generally, I connect mine once a month or so to back up the apps, books, and documents, but that's it really. It's definitely an area where some improvement is due (and iOS 4.2 in November adds some of this, like wireless printing) though.

    This entire premise is flawed. If you need a physical keyboard for lots of data input, an iPad (or any tablet with a touchscreen) isn't ever going to fit the bill. It doesn't matter what you do. Similarly, if you are primarily interested in media consumption (web, video, etc), then the tiny screen on a netbook isn't going to cut it.

  • by AragornSonOfArathorn ( 454526 ) on Wednesday September 08, 2010 @11:15AM (#33508784)

    Can tablets and netbooks coexist? Can science and religion coexist? Can dogs and cats coexist?

    Tablets and netbooks are different products for different purposes. How are they even competing? And no, the iPad won't kill netbooks. It costs thee times as much as a netbook.

  • Re:Yes. (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Abcd1234 ( 188840 ) on Wednesday September 08, 2010 @11:19AM (#33508816) Homepage

    I challenge you to demonstrate the capabilities of your crystal ball: would the comparison come out the same way if the alternative existed?

    If the iPad still offered the better user experience? Absolutely.

    See, you seem to be *completely* missing my point.

    Given two devices, one open and one closed, guess which one would win? The one that provides a better *user experience*. "Open" and "closed" don't even factor into the equation. Which is my entire fucking point. Your average consume doesn't give a shit that they can't develop software for their little toy. All they care about is that the thing provides a silky smooth, easy-to-use experience, that it allows them to consume content they're interested in, and that it works reliably and well. That's it.

    "Open" versus "closed" is an argument for the geeks. But the geeks aren't the target market for the iPad, and won't be the determining factor in the success or failure of the tablet market.

  • Re:Yes. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by jedidiah ( 1196 ) on Wednesday September 08, 2010 @11:19AM (#33508822) Homepage

    The open-ness of a PC or a netbook is what makes it so useful.

    It can do anything that a normal desktop PC can do INCLUDING RUNNING THAT STUPID TETHERING APP for the iPad.

    How funny is that? That $300 dirtcheap ultraportable netbook from Walmart can be the thing that I use to "manage" my iPad/iPod/iPhone/iWhatever.

    This isn't about running Free Software. This is about doing anything you damn well please with your own property and having thousands of hardware and software vendors waiting to cater to you.

  • Re:Yes. (Score:1, Insightful)

    by kg8484 ( 1755554 ) on Wednesday September 08, 2010 @11:31AM (#33508978)
    The thing is, most people don't care about doing everything you want to do with your electronics, and what Apple provides covers pretty much all of their needs. If you don't believe me, talk to product owners. Furthermore, even if a the device does offer some advanced capability, often the user does not have the skill, desire or need to use it. How many people actually care about tethering? How many of those would be able to set it up?
  • by AbRASiON ( 589899 ) * on Wednesday September 08, 2010 @11:35AM (#33509018) Journal

    "Can NetBooks & Tablets Co-Exist?"
    Really? Really? We're going to have a heading like that on /.
    What has this become, the tablet hype needs to stop ASAP, as some of us have NO interest.
    Of course they can bloody well co-exist.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday September 08, 2010 @11:56AM (#33509246)

    The reasons I bought a netbook: 1) phyical size; 2) low cost.
    An iPad costs more than three times as much as I spent on my netbook. For that alone, I wouldn't have bought it.

    The fact that I use my netbook for typing would also have stopped me replacing it with a tablet.

    Maybe someone will make a tablet with a keyboard that costs a third of the current iPad prices? At that point, maybe I'll buy one. But... eh... wouldn't that just be a notebook?

  • Re:Yes. (Score:3, Insightful)

    by whisper_jeff ( 680366 ) on Wednesday September 08, 2010 @12:24PM (#33509588)
    Said like a true Slashdot reader who hasn't clued into the fact that we are not the norm. We are, in fact, the fringe power users who like to play with our devices. We are the people who aren't held back by Apple's walled garden - we know how to jailbreak, if we want out of the garden. Heck, we are the people who actually know that Apple offers a walled garden approach and actually have an opinion on it. The rest of the market - the people who make up the vast majority of consumer purchases - don't know and if you tell them, they don't care. They use their device and they enjoy the process.

    Seriously, we are not the norm. There's a reason "The Year of Linux" has never materialized...
  • Re:Yes. (Score:3, Insightful)

    by samkass ( 174571 ) on Wednesday September 08, 2010 @12:37PM (#33509794) Homepage Journal

    They do care about running Windows software though which the iPad and Android cannot do.

    I think you have to get a little more specific. Most people don't understand that there's such a thing as "Windows software" that doesn't work on other platforms. They want to be able to open their Office files and work with them, which you can do on an iPad.

    If you want to get all technical, you can download an RDC or VNC client for iPad that lets you bring up a desktop to work with. "Most people" really don't care about that.

  • by SuperKendall ( 25149 ) on Wednesday September 08, 2010 @12:43PM (#33509858)

    ..except you can't save anything

    All applications save. And all offer some means to transfer content off the iPad.

    print anything

    You can print from some apps now and it's a system supported feature in November.

    access any random website

    Now you really lost me since I can reach any website from the iPad, there are zero browsing restrictions.

    or access any random bit of data.

    99.9999999% is enough, it turns out.

    It's all dependent on this idea that a computer, even an Apple computer is "too much for the masses to deal with".

    Critical refinement of your statement - normal computers are too much for most people to MAINTAIN. Come on, having helped friends and family with computers, you honestly have any doubt that is the case?

    The Mac used to be the proposed solution to all of normal consumer's PC difficulties.

    The Mac was the hardest computer to use - except for all the others. I guess it makes sense they figured out something even less hard, since they were always at the forefront of computers that were easier to maintain and use.

    There's no market inertia or vendor lock associated with it that Apple can exploit.

    100% correct which is what makes the dominance they enjoy purely a result of building a good product people enjoy and not market control.

    The iPad doesn't need to be castrated despite the protestations of fanboys.

    The iPad is not that constrained despite the assertions of the Haters.

    You got your first four facts totally wrong, I guess it follows you wouldn't understand platform constraints either.

  • Re:Well... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by RapmasterT ( 787426 ) on Wednesday September 08, 2010 @12:56PM (#33510022)
    agreed. this is the same kind of exhibitionistic editorial masturbation that we get over and over and over from these people. Yes, we get like to see your words in print and didn't have anything really useful to say. fine, but I'm getting sick to shit of it. OMG, two devices with radically different form factors and usage patters might be able to co-exist! who could have predicted that!
  • Re:Yes. (Score:2, Insightful)

    by jedidiah ( 1196 ) on Wednesday September 08, 2010 @02:54PM (#33511732) Homepage

    The lack of Flash on the iPad is a manifestation of Apple's disrespect for the property rights of consumers.

    The right to own things and to control those things is not trivial.

    The phrase "life, liberty, and property" should ring a bell.

"I don't believe in sweeping social change being manifested by one person, unless he has an atomic weapon." -- Howard Chaykin