Laptops continue to shrink
* : CCTV * : admin * : 2016-05-31 * : 22
It was just over five years ago that we were waiting with batedbreath for Apple’s tablet computer. The company
delivered,dubbed its new creation the iPad, and set about redefining what a “tablet” could be. Remember? Tablet
computers used to be clunky, convertible laptops that ran Microsoft Windowsand reeked of compromise. The rele-
ase of the iPad helped redraw that gadget in consumers’minds. No, this wasn’t the hefty hunk of steel lugged aro-
und by UPS workers; this was the futureof the computer.
Here’s the truth: I was always suspicious of them. Sure, they seemed wonderful and light andperfect for couch-
based computing. But they weren’t the right format for a lot of the ways Iused a computer. They were great for a me-
eting but less so for my desk. When I needed to grindout a report or design a page, I needed the precision of my
otherwis anachronistic mouse. And,toughest of all, I already owned a laptop, like most people. Buying another co-
mputer seemed more of a “nice to have” than a “must have.” (Unless you’re a UPS worker.)
New figures from IDC, the market research firm, suggest that we’ve reached a ceiling for themodern tablet com-
puter. According to the firm, shipments of the device in the second quarter ofthis year dropped 7% worldwide comp-
ared to the same time last year. Apple and Samsung, themarket leaders (41% combined market share), each exp-
erienced a drop year over year ascompetitors like LG and Huawei surged.
But the overall market is shrinking, just five years after it appeared. For good reason: Laptopscontinue to shrink—
have you seen the latest Macbook?—and smartphones continue to grow,even as both get lighter and longer-lasting
in terms of battery life. Tablets, stuck in the middle, stillhave their place. But the utility of that place is dwindling.
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