When Moses came down from the mountain with the stone tablets, the people said: “That’s all very well, but what are we supposed to do with them?” Moses was so angry that he smashed them to pieces and had to go and get some more from God, and that’s more or less what happened with Steve Jobs and the first iPad. Except Steve Jobs didn’t smash the first iPad, thankfully.
What’s The Point?
You may just be able to remember thinking; “What’s the point of these tablet things?” You’ll certainly remember the first time you used one, at which point you probably thought “I must have one right now.” The sleek, shiny appearance; the powerful, crisp graphics; the silky-smooth touchscreen, and the endless options enabled by its powerful connectivity, all go together to make the tablet the must-have electronic device of the decade.
The ability to play online games practically anywhere is a huge part of the attraction of a tablet. Wi-fi, 3G and 4G technologies provide the connectivity, while the superb screens and touch/tilt functions of modern tablets allow intuitive control of games. Whether it’s puzzle based games like Candy Crush Saga, mobile gambling apps, classics like GTA Vice City or brainteasers like Words With Friends, mobile gaming has come of age with the tablet.
It wasn’t always this way. Before the iPad, the precursors of the modern device often struggled to find a place in the computer market. The GRiDpad may have been popular with the US Army, but who else remembers it now? PDA’s like the Palm Pilot and the Apple Newton had a decent number of fans in the 90’s, but they were far more work-oriented than today’s multifunctional machines.
Early Windows-based tablet computers appeared a decade or so ago. Pen-enabled machines like the Lenovo X61 gradually gave way to touchscreen devices, but the real explosion in the format’s popularity began in April 2010, with the launch of the first iPad.
The spread of the iPad’s competitors, including the Samsung Galaxy Tab and the Google Nexus, has been assisted by the success of the Android operating system. The huge quantity of mobile gaming apps available for both iOS and Android is partly responsible for the expansion of the market. Games like Angry Birds are often the first thing a new user experiences on a tablet. Quality apps, experienced for the first time on a well-designed device, can help to answer the question; “What’s a tablet for?”
Images courtesy of Wikipedia and oldcomputers.net