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The Good Old Days of the Promise of Tablet PCs



Frank Garcia dug this video up. Remember the good old days of the promise of Tablet PCs? It is just my opinion, but with the exception of the processor part of the story in this video, the only thing that has changed is the unfortunate perception on all levels that Tablet PCs have become just a niche device. The promise is still there.



  1. Osiris

    02/17/2009 at 7:36 am

    hehe not the greatest promo I have ever seen but an interesting relic of history.

    I agree the promise is still there, but I find it interesting all the cooperation that was abundant in the video: “microsoft and acer, microsoft and… etc etc”. It seems this cooperation never extended into advertising, marketing and any real drive.

    If microsoft was really serious about tablet pc’s they would be working hand in hand with HP to promote their TX line of tablets since they are the first consumer affordable ones (even if mobility takes a bit of a hit perhaps).

    Maybe with the touch features of Win7, the tablet pc platform will get some much needed consumer attention, interest and love.

  2. Ronald A. Dowty

    02/17/2009 at 8:13 am

    I miss my Tablet PC’s. I had a TC1100 slate, briefly a Toshiba M200, A HP convertible and the a Lenovo X61. Unfortunately Tablet PC’s went from a variety of shapes and sizes into 12″ convertibles with low voltage CPU’s and low resolution screens (which killed portrait mode for me). Today I have a 15″ MacBook Pro which is nice for development work but I still miss my tablet for notes, brainstorming and couch surfing. Maybe if Apple came out with something like a large iPod touch with pen support the new crop of Netbooks would start adopting the feature and I’d have a travel companion for my laptop. I wish HP would come out with a successor to my TC1100. That was probably my favorite of all.

  3. James Kendrick

    02/17/2009 at 8:59 am

    Nice to see this again. In wondering what happened to the space, I am drawn to the comments by Bill Gates in this video. He states it’s an evolution of the notebook which is true, but then states that it’s the ability to detach the screen from the keyboard to carry the highly mobile screen with you. We lost that with convertibles and tablets became just a “minor” superset to notebooks. Sad, really.

  4. Mark Payton

    02/17/2009 at 9:14 am

    I just completed the first round of training with a few of our faculty on their Tablet PCs. Many of them have had them for a year and a half, but the never received any training. (When I came on board, one of my first goals has been to change this.)

    One comment in particular was exemplary of the reception this training got: “I can’t believe I’ve had this for over a year and never new what power I had in my hands.”

    And therein lies the rub. Microsoft and HP and all the rest are marketing these (I use that term loosely!) as a notebook that you can also write on. It is too bad that Apple claimed the “Think Different” moniker for its advertising, because that is an ideal theme for Tablet PCs. If you learn to think a bit differently, they are so much more than just a computer you can write on and that is what needs to be talked about AND demonstrated.

    I agree with Robert about the TC1100. Compaq’s engineers understood better than anyone before or since.

  5. Modnar

    02/17/2009 at 11:51 am

    Well that is nothing short of a relic sadly. I think the hardware and software existed just the price and the marketing is what made it into a niche. As even now still few people have heard of tablets, but I notice that this is slowly changing as more people recognize that I have one and even starting to see more of them.

    I never had a tc1100 I had its previous model the TC1000 and it was one massive joy to use. Too bad they aren’t doing a redo anytime soon.

  6. romeo26

    02/17/2009 at 1:13 pm

    well i think when they released the technology it was way ahead of its time! now i think would be the perfect time to relaunch! i mean if the economy was better.
    i remember back in highschool saying to my friends in the computer lab is what if we can just touch the screen in order to navagate through the computer! they laughed and said it wont happen. now when they see me and my x200t touching the screen, they think its awsome!

  7. R

    02/17/2009 at 2:12 pm

    actually I think the change from a removable screen to convertible is what saved tablet pcs, and took them out of the realm of being a nitch product. Those units with the removeable screens were more awkward on the lap since they had to balance more weight in the screen area and less with the removalbe keyboard.
    I think what still holds it back, and keeps it from being truly an evolution of the laptop is the lack of the tablet capabilities on larger faster laptops.
    If the manfs moved their entire lines to just have swivel screens they’d reduce their build costs, and you wouldn’t have to “settle” for a slower laptop to get the tablet capability.
    When I make the case for them to users, I often loose people because the units lack the additional horse power they need from it.
    The companies need to accept the fact that many people could still use the tablet capabilites without the need to cradle the device in their laps. I rarely take notes like that on my x61. I usually just rest it on the desk in tablet mode or on my lap when I’m taking notes.
    I also see plenty of folks willing to balance a larger laptop on their laps so they can take notes in meetings, so I know the demand is there…we just need to convince the manfs to take that next step in the laptop evolution.

  8. blash

    02/17/2009 at 7:00 pm

    And this is why Apple needs to make a Tablet PC. It has the marketing drive and the initiative to really push this technology to consumers and get the public excited about “the future” – but they’re too cowardly to really develop something interesting and exciting any more.

  9. Kelvin

    02/17/2009 at 10:45 pm

    lol i saw the transmeta logo! slow piece of crap xD

  10. Robin Capper

    02/18/2009 at 5:15 am

    Did Sony, featured, ever do any tablets? I didn’t see any in New Zealand. They seem to just produce endless similar Vaio in different form factors but no innnovation.

  11. Pygsky

    02/19/2009 at 2:47 am

    I have been wanting a tablet PC for some time and finally ordered a Lenovo X200T. This was triggered by the recent sale that lowered the price by almost $500. As mentioned before, the extra cost has hurt the widespread adoption of tablets.

    On the flipside, the convenience of being able to use this to replace my paper notebook for meetings and to be able to keep all of my notes and reference documents on hand at any time.

    Hopefully the arrival of the i7 processors will further improve the performance of these units and companies will do a better job of marketing the tremendous potential of this fantastic tech.

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