July 2013

TabletKiosk adds 12.1-inch Atom N2800-powered NetSlate a525 enterprise tablet
TabletKiosk announced an addition to their line of enterprise-oriented Sahara tablets. The new Sahara netSlate a525 presents a value-priced model completely compatible with existing TabletKiosk accessories and peripherals. Offering improved graphics performance and much longer battery life than the a510 predecessor model, the NetSlate a525 provides excellent connectivity, the choice of various operating systems, dual cameras, a true legacy serial port, and either resistive touch, capacitive multi-touch, or a dual-mode panel that adds an active pen. Pricing starts at US$1,499. [See description, analysis and specs of the TabletKiosk NetSlate a525] -- Posted Tuesday, July 30, 2013 by chb

Park Associates: Tablet adoption reaches nearly 50% of U.S. broadband households
Park Associates reports that 48% of U.S. broadband households own at least one tablet. Tablet ownership increased by nearly 33% in one year, with 22% of households reporting a tablet purchase, while only 7% purchased an e-reader in 2012, down from 9% in 2011. Growth in tablets will continue as OEMs release more tablets aimed at the high and low ends of the tablet market. "Amazon has expanded the low end of the tablet market with the Kindle Fire, whereas Microsoft is making a credible push at the higher end," said Jennifer Kent, senior analyst, Parks Associates. [See Park Associates press release] -- Posted Friday, July 26, 2013 by chb

Review: Samwell Ruggedbook PC-750
The Samwell Ruggedbook PC-750 provides full Windows 7 functionality in a rugged tablet form factor. Measuring just 10.8 x 7.8 x 1.1 inches and weighing just over three pounds, the Intel Atom N2600-powered PC-750 is considerably lighter than most full-size rugged tablets. Its excellent 10.4-inch resistive touch screen with 1024 x 768 pixel XGA resolution offers enough space to run Windows comfortably. There is plenty of wired connectivity on board, all the connectors are standard size, and there is a wealth of wireless functionality, and also dual integrated cameras. [See full review of the Samwell Ruggedbook PC-750] -- Posted Tuesday, July 23, 2013 by chb

Tablets in healthcare a US$1.7 billion market
According to Kalorama Information's latest report, the global market for tablet PC devices in healthcare is expected to increase to $1.7 billion for 2013, reflecting an increase of nearly 27% over the prior year. The report, "The Market for Tablet PCs in Healthcare" has breakouts of usage of Tablet PCs and of the market by customer type (nursing home, physician offices, hospitals) and by geographic region. -- Posted Monday, July 22, 2013 by chb

Microsoft takes $900 million write-down on Surface RT tablets
Microsoft announced its quarterly financials, making a US$5 billion profit on revenue of US$20 billion. Despite the dismal situation in PC sales and the lackluster acceptance of Windows 8, those figures are actually better than the same quarter last year (US$18.1 billion sales, US$492 million loss). But analysts had expected much better. Of note to tablet enthusiasts: Microsoft took a US$900 million write-down on unsold Surface RT tablet inventory. Ouch. US$900 million is 30 times the entire-year sales of a tablet pioneer such as Xplore Technologies, and it's more than the annual sales of a sizable company such as Intermec. While we liked the Surface RT (see here), apparently, customers didn't go for tablets that run only a limited version of Windows. Hmmm... didn't we learn that 15 years ago with Windows CE "Jupiter" devices? [See Microsoft press release] -- Posted Friday, July 19, 2013 by chb

Three things to consider when choosing a Tablet PC for forklift mount applications
Forklift-mounted computers have been transforming the way products move throughout the supply chain for decades, but proper implementation requires good planning and awareness of potential pitfalls. MobileDemand's most recent Ruggedized Computing Blog discusses them in 3 things to consider when choosing a Tablet PC for forklift mount. -- Posted Wednesday, July 17, 2013 by chb

Digitizer pioneer Wacom celebrates 30th anniversary
Wacom held its 30th anniversary celebration party on July 12, 2013 at the Grand Hyatt Tokyo in Roppongi, Tokyo, with partners from around the world, across a wide range of industries. Wacom, of course, supplied its unsurpassed active pen technology to the first wave of pen computers back in the early 1990s. Ten years later, Microsoft built the Tablet PC around Wacom digitizer technology. And today, professional (and increasingly, consumer) tablets still rely on Wacom pen technology for accurate pen functionality. And that's in addition to the various lines of innovative digital pen tablets used by artists, professionals and enthusiasts the world over. Congratulations, Wacom, on a wonderful job! [See illustrated Wacom press release]
-- Posted Tuesday, July 16, 2013 by chb

Worldwide PC shipments drop 10.9% Q2 2013
According to market research firm Gartner, worldwide PC shipments dropped to 76 million in Q2 2013, a 10.9% decrease from Q2 2012. That's the fifth consecutive quarter of declining shipments, the longest in the PC market's history. As for vendors, Lenovo eked out HP for the leas, with Dell third worldwide. In the US, HP leads Dell and Apple (whose PC shipments also declined). At this point it seems pretty clear that tablets are replacing many PC sales. -- Posted Friday, July 12, 2013 by chb

Xplore Technologies introduces 10.1-inch rugged Android tablet
Xplore Technlogies announced the RangerX, a 2.2-pound, 10.1-inch class rugged Android tablet powered by a 1.5GHz dual-core ARM Cortex A9 processor. Xplore's new tablet merges the kind of state-of-the-art technology consumers expect and demand with the ruggedness and durability business and enterprise need. The RangerX has dual cameras, a high-quality 1366 x 768 pixel IPS projected capacitive touch display, up to 192GB storage, exceptional onboard connectivity (including optional HDMI-in and RJ45), a CAC reader, carries an IP65 ingress protection rating, and has a 10-hour battery life. Pricing starts at US$1,349 [See description, analysis and specs of the Xplore RangerX rugged Android tablet] -- Posted Wednesday, July 10, 2013 by chb

New video: Motion CL910 Tablet PC Overview
Sometimes a picture conveys a thousand words, and a video even more. The latter certainly applies to Motion's new video overview of their CL910 Windows tablet. In a neat and elegant two minutes and 19 seconds presentation, you learn what the tablet is all about, and what it can do. [See Motion CL910 Tablet PC Overview] -- Posted Friday, July 5, 2013 by chb