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Ofcom says mobile contracts should ditch inflation-related price rises

Ofcom says mobile contracts should ditch inflation-related price rises

UK telecoms regulator Ofcom wants to ban inflation-related rises in phone and broadband contracts. Instead, it says any potential mid-contract price rises should be set out in pounds and pence.
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Global smartphone market is set for recovery, says new forecast

A new forecast from research specialists Canalys shows the smartphone market is set to recover next year. Worldwide shipments declined by 12% last year but that decline is expected to slow to 5% this year.
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Vodafone and Three plan to merge their UK businesses

Vodafone and Three plan to merge their UK businesses

New Hutchison/Vodafone network would be biggest UK operator

Vodafone Group plc and CK Hutchison Group Telecom Holdings Limited have agreed to combine their UK telecommunication businesses, respectively Vodafone UK and Three UK. The merger will create a large new network operator to compete with Virgin Media O2 and EE.
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UK mobile payment service Paym to close in March 2023

UK mobile payment service Paym will close on 7th March 2023. The service, which allowed users to make and receive payments using their mobile phone numbers, was launched in 2014.
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Qualcomm legal action moves forward in the UK

Qualcomm legal action moves forward in the UK

Which? seeks payout for Samsung and Apple smartphone owners

Consumer protection organisation Which? has been given permission by the UK's Competition Appeal Tribunal to represent Apple and Samsung smartphone buyers in a legal case against chip manufacturer Qualcomm.
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Opinion Articles

Friday, May 20, 2011

Tablets aren't real computers... and that's why they're so popular

Mark Bridge writes:

As any Star Trek fan knows, Apple didn’t invent the tablet computer. The crew of the Enterprise regularly used handheld devices that looked remarkably like an electronic clipboard... or an iPad. In fact, engineers in the 1960s were working on tablet devices as the original Star Trek series first aired.

Then there were the Microsoft Tablet PCs from around ten years ago. I bought one - an Acer TravelMate - as my main computer and loved it. I even loved the special pen that was needed to write on the screen.

Yet when Apple launched the iPad last year, CEO Steve Jobs said “iPad creates and defines an entirely new category of devices”. A distorted view of reality?  A not-so-subtle dig at the iPad’s predecessors?

Not necessarily.

My current laptop is a great piece of kit. It takes care of my email and my documents, handles audio editing for our podcasts, lets me play with photos and videos and even offers me phone calls.

Contrast that with an iPad, which could also do all those things. Just not necessarily at the same time.

Now, when I’m working at my desk, I want a powerful computer. But when I’m writing a blog post while watching TV, it’s not so important. When I’m watching TV and want to make a few notes, I’d rather have something that switches on quickly. That’s when the so-called ‘media tablet’ is a winner. Without the complexity of a PC operating system to slow it down, it’s on in seconds.

This type of usage was noted in recent research from the Nielsen Company in the USA, which said that 30% of tablet usage is when watching TV and 21% is in bed.

And it’s expected to continue, with iSuppli forecasting media tablet shipments to be ten times larger than PC tablet shipments in the next five years. A total of 888.7 million media tablets will be shipped from 2010 to 2015, compared to 88.8 million PC tablets. PC tablet shipments are expected to grow at a slightly faster rate - but you probably won’t really notice.

One day, all computers will switch on quickly. One day, I’ll be able to choose my preferred interface - whether touch-screen, speech control, eye control, brain control... or mouse. Until then, tablets would seem to have a secure future.

iSuppli tablet device shipment forecast

 

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Recent Podcasts

Reviewing our 2015 mobile industry predictions... and looking forward to 2016

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Podcast from Mobile World Congress 2015

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Looking back at February: from security scares to multiple MVNOs

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Interview with Chris Millington of Doro about mobile retailing, wearables and technology for older consumers

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A month of mobile: O2 counts on 3, Microsoft counts to 10 and Apple counts its profits

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