Tablet Costs Going Down? | NEC Develops Linux Tablet/PDA Hybrid | Mobility reaches the mainstream

by Reads (2,232) UPDATES -Tuesday, March 30, 2004

Tablet Costs Going Down?  Bill Gates speaks out on Tablet PC:

…Your PC, you’ll dictate to it; your cell phone, you can talk with,” Gates said.

Fleisher pressed Gates on why, if devices will have speech recognition, Microsoft has such a focus with the Tablet PC.

“Well, ink is super, super important,” Gates responded, because written information can be looked at by several people at once, especially when it’s part of an interactive, multimedia document, such as a sales report that’s linked to a variety of data sources. Besides, he said, there are many situations, such as meetings, where verbal note-taking would be annoying to others. It’s also good for adding annotations to digital documents.

He implied that people who don’t get the Tablet PC just don’t get it. He said, “I mean, I don’t go to any conferences now and have people tell me, ‘Hey, what about a graphics interface, wasn’t that a stupid idea?’ There was a decade of my career where almost every conference like this would be, ‘Why have you bet your company on this fruit-loop graphics interface thing? It’s slow. It’s hard to program to. Who needs 59 icons and 11 fonts?'”

When Fleisher pointed out that there’s a hardware cost involved with adding a Tablet, Gates agreed that the addition of Tablet functionality has to cost $100 or less to be accepted by users. “And that’s what we’re getting to,” Gates said. “Literally, this year, that will be about the situation.”…


NEC Develops Linux Tablet/PDA Hybrid

zmcnulty writes “I’ve translated today’s PC Watch article (Japanese) about a new tablet/PDA device from NEC – it has an 8.4″ (640×480) touchscreen LCD, and a CD-ROM drive. It’s also suprisingly affordable; about $645 USD. However, don’t expect to be able to buy one soon, as production is limited to only 4,000 units for the first year. Still, this is an interesting prospect, and it’s good to see major Japanese corporations interested in Linux.”


Mobility reaches the mainstream

Mobile working has made the transition from vague aspiration to the mainstream in a very short space of time. So Computing‘s survey, in association with O2, offers an important snapshot of how far we have come.

What is clear is that the hype is becoming reality. The reason is not a triumph of the case for work-life balance, although fear of regulation forcing more flexible working is becoming a driver. More realistically, it is because a rapidly-changing market has created very attractive buying conditions.

The technology has advanced at an astonishing pace. Better chips, for example, have added real muscle to better-built, lighter, Wi-Fi enabled laptops, and it’s been no surprise to see the market grow 30 per cent over the past year.

Tablet PCs promise even greater convenience on the move, and ever-improving PDAs now offer robust versions of key desktop software. And we are beginning to understand the potential of smartphones…


Barry J. Doyle



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