Welcome to the newest edition of The Why. “Why aren’t laptop-tablet hybrids the future of the computer?” Good question. (OK, it’s a little tech-geeky but again it beats answering those questions about some of your more personal peccadilloes. Seriously? We thought “The Monkey Wrench” was just the tool you went for when your trade school grad-programmed computer wasn’t doing what it was supposed to do, mmmkay?)
Why aren’t laptop-tablet hybrids the future of the computer? Yours truly is confused. Isn’t that the supposed next big thing because all the wearable stuff invade privacy or is too small to read or whatever?
Personally, it looks to me like most folks like a real PC with the clamshell look. (How else are you supposed to know those pretentious douches at Starbucks are writers if y’all don’t actually see them?) Let’s hear what our guest speaker Tim Bajarin, contributor to TIME, has to say.
Bajarin does indeed confirm that despite advances “the overall form factor has mostly remained in the realm of the ‘clamshell.’ About 95 percent of all laptops sold today are of this design, which basically mimics a book (hence “notebook”).”
So what’s the deal with laptop-tablet hybrids? Bajarin says that approximately “four years ago, laptop makers finally took a detour, introducing something called 2-in-1s. These touchscreen-touting laptop-tablet hybrids, like Microsoft’s Surface lineup, let you pick whichever form factor best suits your needs for a given moment: Laptop mode for hardcore productivity, tablet mode for browsing the daily headlines.”
He adds: “2-in-1s were prompted by Apple’s introduction of the iPad and PC makers’ fear that tablets could one day replace laptops. Now all major PC vendors offer some form of a 2-in-1.” It was the 2-in-1 idea that pushed Microsoft to rush to put out Windows 8.
- We have the background. So why aren’t laptop-tablet hybrids the future of the computer?
Bajarin has test driven computers. He responds: “Personally, I like the option of switching between tablet mode and laptop mode. But I question whether 2-in-1s are right for everybody. “
He points out: “But our research shows computer buyers like businesspeople and students still want a traditional laptop, rather than a hybrid.”
Wait! Don’t people want to be like in Star Trek? Aren’t there schools and businesses where almost everyone has a tablet?
Bajarin clarifies: “They’re bringing tablets into their workplaces and schools in large numbers, but they’re not really asking for their laptops to be tablets, too.”
So laptop-tablet hybrids aren’t the future of computers because PC makers have yet to “convince consumers they need a 2-in-1? Still, if we’re talkin’ Apple it still could happen if they drive sales up significantly, right?
Bajarin concludes: “I have my doubts this will ever happen.” Hence, laptop-tablet hybrids are not the future of computers.
Why aren’t laptop-tablet hybrids the future of the computer? Now you know.
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