Thursday 24 December 2009

Apple Tablet Overdose!

My last post here about an Apple Tablet was back in July, when I predicted that the Cupertino based company would continue to ignore the cheap Netbook market which everyone was raving about at the time. Instead I said I expected them to position a new tablet computer device between their existing notebooks and the iPhone/iPod Touch. The current overdose of rumours in the Press suggests that 2010 will be the year of the tablet. And I stand by what I said in the original posting... they will innovate for reasons of enhancing the customer experience not just because it is possible, as so many tech companies do.

Clearly Apple have been busy preparing the ground for this new device. As I said before, the key to its success is not just the device but the usage model ... what purpose will it fulfil for people in large enough numbers? One piece of well-trailed prep they have been doing for some months now is engagement with media content companies about making that available on the new device. I believe that e-Book readers will always remain niche devices ... not mass market on a huge scale, because their price point as a single function device just doesn't do it. But a media tablet that has compelling content easily available (e.g. through the iTunes store) either on a streaming or purchased basis and which can do other things too could have a much higher price point and still scale in the marketplace.

The second thing that Apple have been preparing for this new device is display resolution independence in OSX. This will mean in the case of the iPhone/iPod Touch version that it will be very easy for developers to make the hundreds of thousands of apps work on a larger touchscreen device. A new device with all those existing apps available is a very compelling offering.

So if the apps and the content are ready, what else is needed? Given that Apple revolutionised the mobile phone with iPhone, and now all manufacturers strive to offer a touch screen phone which rivals their MultiTouch technology, I wouldn't be surprised to see them innovate and push their lead on user interaction even further ahead.


Ugobe 1 said...


I completely agree. Instead of developing something because they can, they choose to innovate around the consumer experience.

With support of iPhone app developers I predict the tablet will overtake e-readers and open up new opportunities for mobile gaming.

I remember a conversation I had with their Foxconn manufacturing team just before the iPhone app store was announced- they said this would change everything.

Well, it looks like they're ready to do it again.

Bob C (Ugobe founder)

Jonathan said...

Hi Bob,
Thanks for your comment on the blog.

Yes I agree with your prediction. I think it may also offer a more convenient format for consuming media than the traditional desktop or notebook computer, for some people. This is particularly the case given the media store/relationships they have with content providers.

Lets see what is announced in 2010 ... Happy new year!