It was raining tablets at the CES with more than 100 models of various makes. Many of these devices run on the Android operating system; Windows Phone 7, though it had a presence, seems to have not been anywhere near as ubiquitous as Google’s Android. Meanwhile the market leader among tablet companies Apple had declared that it doesn’t need to be present at trade shows.
Whenever a promising new tablet is launched, it is hailed as ‘the next iPad killer’. One of these ‘iPad killers’ is Motorola’s Xoom, which will be the first device to run the latest version of Android, 3.0 or Honeycomb. Xoom has a 10.1 inch capacitive touchscreen, gyroscope, accelerometer, front and rear cameras and supports Adobe Flash, the last of which Apple’s iPad might never have.
The other standout feature among tablets at the CES 2011 was the large number of devices running on ARM based processors. ARM architecture has outdone Intel’s technology in the tablet space. Intel was criticised over how it failed to fight the onslaught of tablet processors from other companies and responded citing sales data that people buy tablets in addition to, and not as a replacement for regular PCs.
So the PC market is growing and because a majority of PCs run on Intel chips, with it Intel’s processor business too continues to grow although the company doesn’t have a strong hold on the tablet processor market yet.
Apple has chosen UK’s ARM technology chips over Intel’s chipsets; the latest version of Android requires a multi core chip such as Nvidia’s Tegra 2 that has two A9 ARM cores; and Microsoft too has decided that the next generation of its Windows Phone OS for mobile devices will work on ARM processors. Intel is meanwhile catching up and a number of tablets using Intel chips are expected to appear this year.
Another thing waiting to happen is mobile commerce as tablets and smartphones become more popular due to increase in online advertising opportunities on these devices.