Take another look though, ignore some of the news articles riding on the back of the headline PR and youâ€™ll see something interesting. Firstly thereâ€™s no obvious consideration of PC evolution into the tablet market. Secondly, thereâ€™s a huge opportunity opening up in the 8-13â€ segment. As tablet users start to prefer those smaller, cheaper tablet devices, more value and capability is needed in the larger screen segment.
One could argue that the 8-10â€ tablet segment was always wrong. Given the battery, CPU, heat requirements and a rather skewed market tendency towards large because Apple said so, itâ€™s no wonder that big was perceived to be better but now that you can pick up a fast 7-inch Android tablet for $200 all the others seem expensive, bulky and, to be honest, stupid in comparison.
Thereâ€™s a space in the market developing here for PCs to drop into very smoothly. Itâ€™s a space that demands a higher price and more value. Itâ€™s a space that many thought would be served by productive apps on tablets with Bluetooth keyboards but for the average user that just hasnâ€™t happened. The hybrid, transformer, dockable-style PC is perfect for this segment.
Price issues, battery life issues, sizing issues and operating system issues have been all-but solved. In the next generation of Connected-Standby-capable BayTrail or Haswell tablets youâ€™ll be looking at a dynamic range that surpasses everything in the market. A removable tablet that offers a touch user interface and a long battery life that can dock and offer desktop-level performance is exactly the type of device that fits into the 8-13â€ segment. Thereâ€™s little space for a device that costs twice as much as a 7â€ tablet but doesnâ€™t offer anything new. The 9-10â€ Android and IOS tablets are vulnerable.
Take the technology one step further and youâ€™ll see and even bigger opportunity.
Ever used a 13â€ tablet that weighs under 1lb? Try it. Grab an average sized magazine. In that space you can fit a 13â€ screen. Add the motherboard, battery and connectors and you get 1.2lbs. Remove the motherboard and add a low-latencyÂ wireless display module a-la WiGig and you get a super-light screen. The motherboard, storage, battery, Wi-Fi, heat and bulk are all retained in a base-unit. This design is the natural successor to the â€˜CPU-behind-screenâ€™ designs we have today and PCs are the perfect platform for this. Why? They exclusively offer the dynamic range of processing and operating system that would be attractive to a user and with 7â€ tablets costing very little, thereâ€™s scope for that screen and base-unit to come within a users 2-year budget.
Android and IOS fit a huge market of consumers. They allow those users to do 80-90% of what they need on a PC but it still leaves 10-20% of tasks that canâ€™t be done efficiently. Attempts to solve that problem have largely failed because users want cheap and small and the economics donâ€™t align for manufacturers or developers. It leaves that space for an advanced HDR computing device.
The next gen large-screen tablet could be based on Android or IOS as it evolves but it is more likely to be based on a PC mainboard and Windows 8 because thatâ€™s the platform thatâ€™s ready for a new set of user requirements.
IDC predicts that 43% of tablets will be in this large-tablet range in 2017, down from 73% in 2011 but with the rising market, that means, according to IDC, that thereâ€™s a potential 172 million tablet PC opportunity there sale viagra in 2017. If Microsoft and Intel work towards that goal with the manufacturers thereâ€™s potential for the Portable PC market to grow considerably. Price is critical in order to grab the opportunity quickly, a stylish showcase product is needed too but my prediction is that weâ€™ll see some pretty exciting developments during Computex next week that will give weight to the scenario Iâ€™ve outlined here.