As the noted success of the iPad would indicate, tablets have made and will continue to make an enormous impact in 2010. Companies such as HP and Microsoft canceled or postponed their current tablet projects when the iPad was released, but a plethora of companies are now developing their own competing tablets:
Confirmed earlier this week by Liu Jun, senior VP and president of Lenovo’s Consumer Business Group, Lenovo is developing an Android tablet, dubbed the LePad. Expected to debut in China, the LePad will likely be focused on the Chinese market, where Apple decided not to officially release the iPad.
HP, which talked about developing new slate and netbook devices when it acquired Palm, trademarked the name PalmPad earlier this month. If HP puts out its own tablet, it would likely be based upon Palm’s webOS operating system.
Microsoft also announced earlier this month at its Worldwide Partner Conference that existing partners such as Asus, Dell, Samsung, Toshiba, and Sony will be fielding Windows 7 slates in the near future.
The Dell Streak, currently available in Europe and expected to be released in the US within the next 10 days, is a Smartphone that is very tablet-like. Dell will likely expand upon these designs for its potential Windows 7 Slate.
The Tablet market is expected to expand rapidly, as the 3.27 million iPads sold this quarter would indicate. ABI Research forecasts 11 million media tablet shipments in 2010. ABI Research principal analyst Jeff Orr suggests that that the media tablet segment is still far short of a “mass market,” and that a market size justifying that term probably won’t be reached before 2013.
Many universities have implemented iPad experiments, and higher education tablet adoptions will likely increase as they become more powerful, efficient, and applicable academic tools.