While 2010 was supposed to be the year of tablets, it did not turn out to be. The only two noteworthy tablets that launched in 2010 were the iPad and the Samsung Galaxy Tab. iPad went on to become a runoff success for Apple, just like the iPhone.
However, 2011 will see a lot more new tablets coming into the market and the iPad will definitely have more competition. So which are the tablets that you can look forward to in 2011? Here is a list of top 5 tablets which you can buy in 2011.
Apple iPad 2
Well, iPad was a run-off success; however, it did lack quite a few features including a camera. In 2011 (most likely in April), Apple will announce the iPad 2. It is rumored to do away with the home button and replace everything with multi-touch gestures, similar to what you would see on a Mac.
iPad 2 is also rumored to have a camera which can be used to record videos and video chat using Facetime. Rumors also suggest that the next generation of iPad will feature a Retina Display’. Users should also expect the iPad 2 to sport a dual-core processor which should be easily able to play back 1080p videos.
What users should not expect the iPad 2 to feature is the support for Adobe Flash. The iPad 2 will be running on a new iOS version which might include some basic photo and video editing capabilities as well. Expect Apple to set the bar so high with the iPad 2 that rest of the manufacturers will be playing the catch-up game for the rest of the year.
The Motorola Xoom was the highlight of the CES 2011. The Xoom is powered by an Nvidia Tegra 2 processor and sports a 10.1-inch display. It also packs a GPS, Magnometer, Accelerometer and a barometer! The Xoom will be running on Android 3.0 Honeycomb which is tailor made by Google for tablets and features a mind blowing UI. (Full specs of Motorola Xoom)
In all probability, Xoom will be the first tablet to launch with Android 3.0 on board. Reports also suggest that the Xoom will be a Google Experience’ device which means that the tablet won’t MotoBlur UI on top of Android 3.0 running on it.
The Motorola Xoom will hit the shelves in Q1 of this year followed by the 4G LTE version. The 3G based Xoom(s) will also be upgraded to 4G LTE by Motorola later on. I expect the Motorola Xoom to be a very worthy competitor to the iPad 2.
Last year, Research In Motion (RIM) announced the BlackBerry PlayBook at the BlackBerry Developer Conference. The PlayBook is based on the QNX platform and is going to enable things that you have never seen before.The tablet will be based on a dual-core 1GHz A9 processor and will pack 1GB of RAM. The 7-inch display of the tablet will have a resolution of 1024×600.
The usual Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, GPS, HDMI port and a front 3MP camera along with a 5MP camera at the back are also present.
From the demo videos of the Playbook available all over the net, the UI of the tablet looks pretty nice. It will be interesting to see as to how nicely the PlayBook integrates with Blackberry phones out there. The PlayBook may very well become the comeback’ weapon for RIM.
Nearly, all the major manufacturers have announced their tablets except for HTC. Unlike all other tablets out there which are based on Nvidia Tegra 2 platform, users should expect the tablets from HTC to sport a dual-core Qualcomm processor. Only time will tell whether the dual-core processors from Qualcomm will be better than Nvidia Tegra 2 or not.
HTC might have remained quiet about the tablet war but as their logo suggests, they are quietly brilliant’. They are one of the biggest Android handset manufacturers out there and they should not be ruled out from the tablet race. I expect HTC to blow the competition away with their tablets.
I also have a feeling that HTC will launch two or more tablets one with a 9-10-inch screen while the other one will have a 7-inch screen. It will also be interesting to see whether HTC tablets will feature some sort of custom UI like their Android handsets have Sense.
Other companies like ASUS and ViewSonic will also launch many tablets during the year. Sadly, I don’t expect them to become a hit among the masses until they come up with something totally different.
Notion Ink Adam
This controversial tablet from a startup in India sure looks promising. Recently, it was also demoed at the CES 2011. Notion Ink took a lot of flak during the launch of the Adam, but in the end this turned out to be one of the best tablets out there. The Adam runs on Android 2.2 with the Eden UI on top of it which looks totally mind blowing. The Adam will also be the first tablet to hit the market which will be powered by the Nvidia Tegra 2 processor. The Adam will also be available with a PixelQi display.
The build quality of the tablet has also been appreciated by and so was its custom UI and performance. The tablet recently got its FCC clearance and Notion Ink has also started shipping the tablet to the people who pre-ordered it. The success of this highly controversial tablet from a start-up in India will depend on the early reviews it gets. However, according to recent reports an update pushed by Notion Ink have been bricking the Adam. The startup definitely has a lot of work to do because this device is definitely worth buying.
So are you planning to buy a tablet in 2011? Which tablets are you looking forward to? Do let me know through your comments.