27. tablets – the final frontier

Comments (4)
  1. Tim says:

    T-man, impressive post as usual.

    The thing missing — and the thing I hope android provides — is a cheap alternative. iPad looks great, but I can buy a lot of stuff for $500, the cost of the cheapest version. If these are truly filling a niche right next to netbooks (say that 5x fast), they must be cheap. E.g., I can buy a sweet Asus eee for <$400. Can't say the same about a tablet.

  2. tushar says:

    you're definitely right on prices. the only android tablet i've seen widely available under that $400 mark is the archos 7 for around $200 (the archos 9 is $550). for the tablet makers to be price competitive, there has to be more players in the market, which just hasn't occurred yet. unfortunately a lot of tablets have experienced release delays, including those who are ditching win7 embedded for android.

    in my opinion something that will accelerate the android tablet movement will be froyo (android 2.2). that will fill in things apple doesn't offer, like flash support, which would make it more attractive than an ipad to some. on top of that, android 3.0 "gingerbread" is slated to be available late this year, and is rumored to be a big improvement over the current android OS's. i would say wait until late fall / winter and you'll start to see prices become a little more attractive, perhaps just in time for the holidays.

    as far as the niche it serves, i think that's still being carved out. tablets are still more of a "want to have" as opposed to a "need to have" item, but again, with more options in the market, that may change over time.

  3. One of my autistic students has one for his daily use at school (dad is a big tech guy). His parent is now questioning the need for him to even be taught handwriting since he will have his ipad or something like it accessible for the rest of his life….

  4. tushar says:

    i'm a big proponent for technology in the classroom, especially advances made in using technology for teaching special needs students. but i completely disagree with the growing "handwriting is unnecessary" sentiment. even though i write very little these days, pen to paper still has its place.

    but then again, you've got the experience here – how is that working out for your student?

    things like tablets and other mobile tech are already everywhere and will just proliferate from here, in both numbers and scope. i hope it doesn't get to the point where tech becomes a replacement for skill – i still believe the two have to be used in conjunction, instead of relying on the former while ignoring development of the latter. i already fear the generation that relies on texas instruments rather than their brains when it comes to simple arithmetic. i guess writing is next.

    plus, as far as communication tools go from a resilience standpoint, it's a lot harder to break your writing hand than it would be to drop a tablet.

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