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In the News: What Exactly is a Tablet?

Since the iPad’s release in April, tablets have entered mainstream culture. And it is just not the iPad; Dell, Hewlett-Packard, Asus, Fuijtsu, Acer, Archos have all produced tablets. More than 7 million tablets are expected by sell by the end of 2010 and more than 46 million are estimated to ship by 2014.

In the midst of this tablet mania, CNET has a really interesting article that asks, how exactly do we define a tablet? We are used to defining products by size, specifications, and features, but the traditional lines are being blurred with tablets.

Gartner Technology Business Research says, “a true tablet is any slate over 5 inches running a full operating system like Windows, Mac OS X, or Linux.” The International Data Corporation says that a tablet is anything over 7 inches. To make matter even more confusing, HP, Dell, and Apple all have their own definitions for a tablet. They presume that you already own a laptop and a cellphone and want to sell you a new product, regardless of the feature specifications.

What is the senior consumer to make from this? It is not our duty to provide the technology world with a uniform definition for the tablet but we would like to explain why the tablet appears to to be elder friendly. At either 5 or 7 inches, the screen is nice and large. Aging adults with failing eyesight don’t need to squint to be able to see the content on the screen. They generally have simple, barebones Mac or PC processing systems; technophobic seniors don’t have to be afraid of the interface.

The term “tablet” matters because we want it to matter; we want to categorize and understand our devices within a largest context. And thats fine with us, as long as the the gadgets that are known as tablets have a series of useful senior friendly features.

What makes a tablet a tablet? (FAQ) – (CNET)

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