(中+英)Trip report: The tablet wars
Trip report: The tablet wars
The show has attracted more than 2,000 exhibitors and is expected to draw 120,000 visitors to this tiny island, and as usual, the local population is elated to see us come and spend our dollars to observe the latest trends in new technology.? While no one can deny that this year's crop of products is playing catch-up to the wildly successful Apple iPad, it is clear that creative minds up are not relying entirely on duplication of the Apple formula to win consumer dollars.? Without trying to be judgmental, this report will focus on trying to identify the breadth of creativity and diversity that could adorn the shelves of retail stores around the world in the months to come.
First, let's start with a very good pair of tablets that represent fair form, fit, and function comparisons to the market leader in this category.
The Samsung Galaxy Tab seemed to be a better solution for high resolution activities like gaming, but since it was not possible to perform side-by-side comparisons, let's call this a draw.? These solutions fit the mold typical to the basic definition of a tablet these days, and clearly have been designed as high quality products.
Now for some creativity.
The Asus Transformer appears to be an alternative designed for those of us who just cannot leave behind the trusty keyboard for touch screen typing.? At first glance, this looks like a typical netbook or notebook, but the base/keyboard is really a docking station for the screen, which can be detached and then used as a tablet.? When the screen is attached, not only can you type as if the device were a notebook, the dock also charges the tablet and offers USB ports so you can also attach additional standard peripherals.
对我们这些离不开实体键盘的人来说，华硕变形金刚平板似乎是个值得期待的设计。第一眼看上去，它就像寻常的上网本或笔记本电脑，但机身/键盘其实只是屏幕的底座，可以取下后作为平板使用。接上屏幕后不但可以像笔记本电脑一样打字，而且底座还可以为平板充电并提供 USB 接口接入标准设备。
But the Asus guys were not finished.? They also developed a solution that actually combines a tablet with a phone.? The phone can be used as normal for calling and texting, but when you want to explore the internet or use a full size tablet device for any application, you install the phone into its customized slot and the tablet uses the phone for its connectivity.? A single SIM card in the phone now acts to serve two purposes ... phone and tablet.
但华硕没有在这里止步。他们还开发了一种可以将平板和手机组合起来的办法。手机可以正常用作通话或短信，但当你想浏览网页或使用平板尺寸应用程序的时候，只需要将手机塞进平板的特制插槽，平板就能用上手机的联网功能。手机里的一张 SIM 卡可以用作两种用途——手机和平板。
This Fujitsu Tablet PC solution (the only one of these devices that can truly be called a Tablet PC since it is a real Intel CPU running Windows) accomplishes the trick of appearing to be a tablet by using a rather clever hinged mechanism which allows the screen to be used as a traditional notebook or reversed and then it becomes a true Tablet PC. It's heavier than the other alternatives, but this solution shows how a PC can still provide its legacy functionality while offering a modern touch screen interface as an alternative.
The last tablet to be included is one of several designed by Viewsonic.? While not specifically differentiated from many of the other choices, Viewsonic chose to demonstrate their solution in a booth where they emphasized connectivity between a tablet and existing high resolution monitors.? Many of the other tablets at Computex also supported the same HDMI interface, enabling monitors and TVs to be connected to the tablets, but Viewsonic was the only vendor that I saw who demonstrated this connectivity as a standard part of their story.? Viewsonic's mascot Gouldian finches wandered around the 4th floor of the Nangang Convention Center, trying to attract traffic to their booth.? But as you can see, other vendors were relying on more traditional tradeshow techniques, dressing attractive young women in plastic clothing, to achieve the same results.