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First. From a purely technical standpoint, I think we would all agree that a tablet is a computer in the sense that it has a CPU, RAM, and Storage yet research firms etc seem to categorize them as a "tablet" rather than a computer.

Interesting, if you categorized an iPad as a computer then Apple would likely be the number one seller of computers.

Is categorizing an iPad as a tablet simply an "anti-apple" bias.

The reality is that an iPad probably earns Apple more money than what HP or Dell earns on most computers so its not really a "profit" thing.

The new HP500 Slate runs windows and in my opinion, a netbook without the clamshell.

So is a tablet a "computer" or is it a "tablet"?

If you say they two should be distinct then is the HP 500 a tablet or is it a netbook?
 

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According to Wikipedia

A " tablet computer", or simply" tablet", is a complete computer contained entirely in a flat touch screen that uses a stylus, digita pen, or fingertip as the primary nput device instead of a keyboard or mouse which may or may not be included.

HP calls their Slate 500 a tablet PC.

So, what's the problem?
 

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jschall, I don't know why you are being confrontational?

I am simply trying to understand what may people consider to be a tablet versus a personal computer.

By your definition a touchscreen desktop computer is also a tablet because its a has a flat touch screen also yet most people would not consider it a tablet.
 

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I think maybe the best nomenclature is "PC" versus "computer".

Clearly iPad is a computer a technical POV, but it is not a PC in that it does not do everything a full featured system can.

IMO, a tablet can be either. In the case of HP, I'd call it a PC. In the case of the iPad, it's a consumption device more than a PC.
 

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The easiest solution is let the manufacturer decide the name. So, if Apple and HP want to call their devices tablets, accept it at face value.

IMHO a tablet is a keyboardless netbook, a "open face" device.
 

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Yeah Hugh! What's your problem? :D

Perhaps once you go over a certain size it is customary to drop the tablet label. Netbooks have keyboards, tablets do not. Tablet have touch screens, netbook do not (typically). Same argument can be made for 11" Netbooks that are spec for spec the same another companies 11" laptop.

Or what about the HP TouchSmart PC? It is really just a big tablet.

IMHO a tablet is a keyboardless netbook, a "open face" device
I like Candybar NetbookTM. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #7
99semaj, that really isn't clear. Who defines what a "full featured system" can do.

You can do web browsing, email, spreadsheets, word processing, movie watching and so on on an iPad or a Slate. Sure the applications and OS are different but the tasks being performed are the same.

Also, if you extend your argument that a tablet is a "consumption device" then you could argue that an iPod Touch or Archos Media player is a tablet whereas I would call them "portable media players"
 

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IMHO a tablet is a keyboardless netbook, a "open face" device.
James99, i understand but then how do you define an iPod Touch?

Or what about the HP TouchSmart PC? It is really just a big tablet.
Jake, that was my earlier argument when a poster defined it as a computer with a touch screen.
 

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Good point. Since Apple isn't calling the Itouch a tablet (I assume they are not) then it goes back to my first point in prior post.
 

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To my knowledge, Apple has never called the iPad a tablet in its marketing or PR which by your definition would mean Apple does not sell tablets.

(aside: the only mention of tablet on the Apple site is in reference to a Graphics tablet used by artists to interact with their Apple Computer. So in Apple terms, a tablet is an input device)
 

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Wiki strikes again

The iPad is,
a portable media player, personal digital assistant, and Wi-Fi mobile platform
The HP TouchSmart is,
a tablet PC laptop and touchscreen all-in-one desktop computer
The HP Slate 500 is,
a multi-touch capable slate PC
A slate computer is,
a tablet PC without a dedicated keyboard
I have paraphrased where necessary.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Jake, if you're saying that a "slate" is a unique type of tablet (ie. one without a dedicated keyboard) then you would classify the iPad as a slate and wouldn't a netbook be a tablet since it has a dedicated keyboard?

FWIW, those quotes from Wikipedia don't define why you call the iPad a "slate" or "tablet" while an iPod touch is a portable media player. If an iPad is simply an iPod Touch on Steroids, as many have argued, then shouldn't they be deemed the same category of device?
 

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No I meant to highlight the obvious disagreements and contradictions between all the products and form factors listed.

So is a tablet a "computer" or is it a "tablet"?
To answer this specific question. It is both. The iPad is both. As is the Touch. IMHO.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Ok, I getcha.
 

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Netbooks/laptops, tablets/iPads. In my mind, they're all simply different type of computers. There's a big grey area out there without any defined standards, so in the end, it has as much to do with device form-factor and functionality as it does how a product is being marketed.
 

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Hmmm, lots of good points. I don't know what to think anymore.

Apple is a curated environment, which despite the criticism that it makes it "less than a PC", still makes it the best user experience out there (DISCLAIMER: IMHO). Maybe that's the defining criteria?
 

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Discussion Starter #18
coop, that is what I alluded to in my first post along with a recent iPad discussion where someone argued that tablets and iPad were a `niche` market.
 

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Maybe hardware isn't the right way to be defining these things. For now we still have full featured OS like Windows, OS X, and many Linux distros, which I think are fundamentally different from mobile OS like iOS, Android, and WebOS.

Of course then how do you define Chrome OS?
 
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