The CITE, a blog published by the National Association of College Stores, takes a look at the intersection of education and technology, highlighting issues that range from course materials to learning delivery to the student experience. Comments, discussion, feedback, and ideas are welcome.

Friday, January 10, 2014

Tablets Still at the Center of CES

Four years ago, e-book readers and tablets were the hot stars of the famed ConsumerElectronics Show. At this year’s CES, underway Jan. 7-10 in Las Vegas, standalone e-readers aren’t even lukewarm but a new generation of tablets still occupies the spotlight.

A host of new tablet models, representing a variety of features and forms, are on display at the show, according to C/net. Manufacturers seem to be trying to figure out just what consumers want in a tablet. Do they need one with a stylus, a larger screen (up to 12.2 in.), mini versions with cellphone capabilities, or a stripped-down model with a cheaper pricetag? How about a hybrid laptop/tablet that can boot up both Windows 8.1 and Android operating systems?

Tablets will almost certainly gain ground with college students, who would rather tote something lighter than a laptop around campus, especially if all they want to do is take notes and go online.

Wired.com’s CES coverage also highlighted a new higher-end tablet that might work well for professors doing field research or campus retailers handling off-site sales at the stadium. The Panasonic Toughpad can be dropped without damage from a normal standing or desk height, resists dust and water, and comes with ports for a payment-card reader, bar-code reader, GPS unit, or extra battery.

For the first time, a section of the CES floor was devoted to showcasing new developments produced by higher-education incubators. The Academia TechTechZone features innovations from seven institutions.

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