Tablet Computers

October 21, 2011

Small, portable computers continue to gain popularity. Before the iPad came out, netbook sales were rising fast. A netbook is a small, lightweight laptop that has a small screen (usually around 10”, small keyboard, and reduced computing power. The big advantage to netbooks is their light weight and portability. They are great for travelling.

Then the iPad came out and everything changed. These types of tablet computers are even smaller and more portable than netbooks. But they sacrificed a lot of functionality and didn’t run the full version of Windows. In addition, , these types of tablets aren’t very good for typing. 

By the wayiPads run IOS which is Apple’s operating system for the iPhone, iPod, and iPad. Other tablets have come out running Google’s Android operating system which can also run a phone or tablet. Next year, Windows 8 will come out which will also have the ability to be run on a phone or tablet. The current version of Windows, however, does support tablet functionality, but it only runs on a computer, not a phone.

Long before we had netbooks or tablet computers, we had the tablet laptop. This is a regular sized laptop that allowed you to swivel the screen around and lay it flat down against the keyboard so that the display is facing out instead of towards the keyboard. In this configuration, a tablet laptop looks much like an iPad, only bigger, bulkier, and heavier.  The big drawback to these types of laptops is that they are expensive.

Now, manufacturers are taking the idea of the tablet laptop into the world of netbooks and tablets. The result is a netbook type laptop that can convert to a tablet. It has the power of a netbook, the features of both a tablet computer and the full version of Windows, and the price of an iPad.

Take a look at the Dell Inspiron Duo.

You can use it like a regular netbook, or you can flip the screen around and use it like a tablet. You can also set it on a base and watch it like a TV. All for the same price as an iPad.

So if you have been considering getting a tablet computer or a netbook, consider a model that is both.

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