So What Kind of Gadget is a Tablet Computer?
Well, as you are probably already aware, you now see them everywhere - on planes, at coffee shops, in the park. Everywhere you look there are people holding what sort of look like giant cell phones and tapping away on them with a serene look of joy on their faces.
They are what is known as tablet computers – or tablets for short. But while we see them more and more everyday, you often hear people who don't have one ask a very simple question; what are they?
Tablets are hand-held computers that are either flat or wedge-shaped, and function by having the user touch the screen to initiate whatever action they wish to perform.
They have no physical keyboard and are completely portable, using rechargeable batteries for power.
They can use wireless and/or mobile technology (like 3G) to connect to the internet.
They are smaller than most laptops, and are capable of running a wide range of applications, from video games to email clients.
The majority of tablets have screen sizes around 10” in diameter – but there are some with 7” screens as well.
And as tablet technology advances, they are increasingly utilizing operating software designed specifically for mobile devices rather than the traditional desktop computer.
Because of this, tablets are quickly becoming the equal of even the most sophisticated desktop machines in-terms of accessing media.
One of the more interesting aspects of tablet technology is that it qualitatively advances the movement toward acquiring software solely via the internet instead of through a boxed cd or disk. The other key component is the shift to touch screen technology.
While this technology has been around for a while, it was never really practical for desktop computers. Imagine having to reach across your desk to tap your computer screen as your only means of navigation.
That would get tiring pretty fast. But with a hand-held device like the tablet, touch-screen technology has finally found a home.
The three leading types of tablets currently on the market are the iPad by Apple, several versions utilizing the Android Honeycomb OS, and the Blackberry Playbook with its own operating system designed specifically for a tablet.
While each has its own unique features, together they provide computer users with an exciting new way to access internet and multi-media technology – in a completely portable way.
If a smart phone is too small for you, and a laptop just a little too big - tablets are that perfect middle ground you've been looking for.
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