Microsoft Tablets: Will Apple have one, too?

in Future Apple Hardware edited January 2014
Here's a blurb from CNET:

[Microsoft VP Jeff] Raikes will announce that the new Office version, being developed under the name Office 11, is scheduled to ship by mid-2003. That version will include better support for Extensible Markup Language (XML), an industry standard for data description and exchange and a key technology behind Microsoft's .Net Web services plan. [...] Raikes will also discuss Microsoft's Tablet PC initiative. Raikes will disclose that three PC hardware makers - Toshiba, Acer and Fujitsu - will debut the first Tablet PC models on Nov. 7. At least six other makers, including Viewsonic, Motion Computing and Via, are expected to follow with Tablet PC systems later this year, Raikes said."

The question is: will Apple introduce their own Tablet style Mac? Can they do it soon, to jump on the Microsoft bandwagon, or do they need to wait until they can get it right?


  • Reply 1 of 46
    jasonppjasonpp Posts: 308member
    I hope not.

    I think adding touchscreens to all their computers would be a better idea, to see how people react and if they add value in real life.

    I for one would love to have a touchscreen for flash animation, but I can't see the average Excel user wanting one.
  • Reply 2 of 46
  • Reply 3 of 46
    davegeedavegee Posts: 2,765member
    I hope they do...
  • Reply 4 of 46
    macubusmacubus Posts: 95member
    me too
  • Reply 5 of 46
    chuckerchucker Posts: 5,089member
    I hope not. The tablet PC idea isn't ready for the mass market yet.
  • Reply 6 of 46
    eizzumdmeizzumdm Posts: 27member
    Here is a review with screenshots of the new Windows XP Tablet PC Edition.

    <a href=""; target="_blank"></a>;

    I suppose if it works as advertised, it will enable the first buzzworthy new computers in awhile to come out of the Windoze world. (NB: Buzzworthy does not necessary translate as practical or worth blowing hard earned cash on.)

    Interesting (verrry interesting), though, how the article refers to the WXPTPCE's handwriting input and recognition as "Ink.", where have we heard that name before? <img src="graemlins/oyvey.gif" border="0" alt="[No]" />

    WXPTPCE has an expected release date of November 7, with hardware soon to follow. So I wonder the same thing as clonenode--Is an Apple branded tablet coming soon (even MWNY) or is Apple going to sit this one out like they did with post-Newton Palm devices?

    [ 06-26-2002: Message edited by: eizzumdm ]</p>
  • Reply 7 of 46
    kecksykecksy Posts: 1,002member
    Tablet PCs are the spawn of satan!

    Seriously, Apple should concentrate on its digital hub strategy and work to improve its current product lines before venturing into the unknown world of Tablet PCs.

    Apple should wait it out. They can always enter the market later if Tablet PCs do sell, and introduce a product that kills all other offers like they did with the iPod.
  • Reply 7 of 46
    junkyard dawgjunkyard dawg Posts: 2,801member
    Let M$ lose billions on a tablet. Then Apple can sit back and laugh.

    Tablets are going nowhere. There are a million reasons why a laptop is better than a tablet.

    And no, I don't want a touch screen. I HATE using computers where people have smudged up the display by putting their dirty fingers all over it. The LAST thing I want is a display that requires touching....YUCK!!!
  • Reply 9 of 46
    lucaluca Posts: 3,833member
    I also don't think a tablet PC is a good idea. That's why we have laptops and PDAs. Large portable computers (laptops) aren't comfortable to hold in your hand while using, and they really require both hands to use, so you use them on a desk. PDAs are comfortable to use in the palm of your hand, and require only one hand to operate effectively. But a fully featured computer (or at least a partially featured one) with a 10" or so LCD would be too cumbersome to use while holding it. And it wouldn't be that great for use on a desk either, unless you had a sort of stand (therefore defeating the purpose of having a compact tablet).

    PDAs have been around for years. So have laptops. So have touch screens. Perhaps there's a reason that no one has felt the need to develop a tablet PC? Maybe it's because they know that current mobile computers are just fine.

    The only sort of "tablet PC" I could see working would be a combination of a laptop and PDA, with a swiveling screen that lets you use it either way. Looks like a laptop, then you spin it around so the screen faces out and you "close" it, so you are now looking down at the screen, which accepts stylus input. That would be cool, and it would allow you to comfortably use the computer while sitting, and somewhat comfortably use the computer while standing also, and you could present the screen to a bunch of people by turning it.
  • Reply 10 of 46
    kecksykecksy Posts: 1,002member
    Now that I think off it, Apple did have a tablet PC awhile back with the eMate. Newton may even be big enough to count as one too, atleast a hybrid.
  • Reply 11 of 46
    undotwaundotwa Posts: 97member
    [quote]Originally posted by Keeksy:

    <strong>Now that I think off it, Apple did have a tablet PC awhile back with the eMate. Newton may even be big enough to count as one too, atleast a hybrid.</strong><hr></blockquote>

    eMate was just a newton with a keyboard.
  • Reply 12 of 46
    bartobarto Posts: 2,246member
    Competeing ideologies basically.

    Tablets basically say: You have one computer hidden in a den. You have multiple interfaces to it. You hardly ever touch the monitor. You use a screen it your living room for playing WMAs and WMVs. You use a tablet to browse online in your living room. You use an Xbox for games.

    Apple basically says: You have an Airport network connecting your main Mac (which is good looking and quiet enough for your living room), with other computers. These can be a laptop, a second mac, or whatever. No multiple interfaces. An iPod/set top box for music. Digital devices functioning independently of a computer, but dependent to edit/transfer data.

    No monolithic PC 4x as powerful as current ones to make performance hit from multiple interfaces less noticiable for Apple. A PC should be beautiful enough for you to be proud of it. A PC should be... a Mac.

    A microsoft iPod would stream audio from your mainframe (which is what the PC would become). Would you like an iPod you couldn't take songs from multiple computers from? Would you like an iPod which didn't function as a hard disk? Would you like an iPod that would only work when an Airport network was present?

    A tablet computer is an interface basically. Necessary for a computer you hide in a den. Not necessary for a Mac, more beautiful than the Monét on the wall.

  • Reply 13 of 46
    bartobarto Posts: 2,246member
    I read the article. What a dumb-ass. Kisses the toilets that Bill G sits on.

    How is a pen more natural than a keyboard? A keyboard is far more precise than a pen is. A pen is right for paper, where the pen goes straight to paper. A pen ain't right for a screen, where What You See Ain't What You Get.

    As far as the "Journal" goes, you bring a Palm to meetings. Is he so blinded my Microsoft that he refuses to accept the difficulties in lugging and using a full blown 14" or so screen at a meeting?


    [ 06-26-2002: Message edited by: Barto ]</p>
  • Reply 14 of 46
    progmacprogmac Posts: 1,850member
    i guess this is kind of a neat idea, but i'll be surprised if it takes off. this is why: I see a palm, and think: i can keep my appointments and schedule with me in my pocket. I see a laptop and think, i can have a full-blown computer for the road, or maybe even at home. when i see the tablet i don't really think anything. no matter how much i am told by companies that i will use it for this and that, i have no real practical use for it. kind of like the clap-on clap-off lights. neat, but i wouldn't use them.
  • Reply 15 of 46
    I can see a few uses. Business meetings, especially with a shared whiteboard, then download back at your desk. Artists may find it acceptable as a sketchpad - work outside then upload to finish. It can work well in warehousing areas and inventory control if you have a wireless network. Would be better if it was an iBook with a reversible screen - NEC had one long ago. Jaguar's Ink opens up many possibilities.
  • Reply 16 of 46
    clonenodeclonenode Posts: 392member
    Wouldn't a Hospital be a great place for a Tablet? I have an image in my head of someone standing, taking notes and needing a large screen to pull up data, "charts" from a main database. It seems to me a Tablet would be great for this.

    But at home? I'm always near a flat surface: coffee table, kitchen table, counter, vanity. In these cases a tablet will not be practical. It's like trying to read a magazine when it's lying flat. A laptop works better.
  • Reply 17 of 46
    nitridenitride Posts: 100member
    Now you know why Steve showed off "InkWell" in Mac OS X 10.2 at the WWDC.

    MS was already working on a version (who knows, maybe they got some tech from Apple with the patent-swap/non-compete agreement that just expired) as we now see.

    Of course the rest of word thinks MS invented all this and when 10.2 comes out Apple will look like a tag-along trying to "catch up" to the big innovator Microsoft.

    MS also has a full staple of apps to go along with their handwriting *cough* technology *cough*. A journal app that has different font settings for digital ink (color, styles). New sticky notes that can be attached to documents or even other apps (our stickies look so pathetic now). Digital ink in various apps (from MS of course).

    What has Apple got? Well, besides handwriting input rather than typing and gesture recognition?

    Why did they show develoeprs this and release no SDK? No product announcement? Who cares that Apple can do this to? The Newton did it 10 years ago for krist sake!

    WHAT IS THE PURPOSE APPLE! Gateway doesn't wait till PCWorld expo to release major new computers so why does Apple? Its so incredible frustrating being a Mac user right now, we are being passed by by everyone else suddenly. Our CPU sucks, Xserve is a non-starter, OS X is slowly lurching towards acceptance.

    Blah, heres hoping some kind of PDA/Tablet appears to back up Ink in Mac OS X 10.2 or at least a digital ink app at MWNY. Something!
  • Reply 18 of 46
    I wasn't aware that Apple did not release an Ink SDK. That is weird. Maybe they're waiting until Jaguar is released to release an SDK, but why? <img src="confused.gif" border="0">
  • Reply 19 of 46
    snoopysnoopy Posts: 1,901member
    When the boss has an idea, those who succeed in a company are the ones who tell the boss the idea is great, and then get busy to make it happen. It does not matter whether the idea is good or bad. I seem to remember that Gates had this tablet idea for a long time now. He likes it. It is his idea. I think it is mediocre. Whatever reason Apple has Ink, I suspect the product and implementation will be far better than the MS tablet.
  • Reply 20 of 46
    Microsoft has been selling the new tablet PC's by discounting handwriting recognition, which to me just justifies my thoughts that this technology is not mature enough. They seem to think that merely capturing the input as a graphics file, that will be sufficient. I have a Palm and a PocketPC, both have decent handwriting recognition, but nothing that would lead me to believe people will be willing to swap a keyboard for a stylus. At any rate, the price differential is going to be more than just a hundred dollars or so. I think tablets are dead in the water, again.

    Several companies over the years have come out with tablets, none of them have gone anywhere. I really don't see this as being any different. I think the Mira (which is basically a portable terminal linked wirelessly to a host PC) actually kind of makes sense, but you're talking $500-$800 a unit which is cost prohibitive.

    For a tablet PC, Microsoft is expecting people to pay extra for a unit that is actually less capable than the unit it is designed to replace. People can type much faster than they can write and furthermore, no conversion to text is necessary.

    I hope Apple stays out of this debacle.
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