Mobile device makers just don’t get it … their target customers are now beyond the casual users and in-school and in-office workers.
I know PDA’s are all about small programs that require very little memory, etc, etc.
But just for once, if they stopped thinking of stuffing EVERYTHING ELSE under the sun into these devices and just added more RAM and more battery power … then your target market … professionals on-site or on-the-go would find these devices more useful.
Should they care if they have both CF and SD card slots? Should they care IF they have a 1 megapixel camera vs. 2 megapixel?
Might be, but the priority level is wayyyy low.
But the more important features should be more built-in memory (ever tried loading a program from an SD card??) and more battery life.
Get that right, and then worry about the additional features.
Also, Why can’t I use the CF card-slot to add a 2nd battery to the device? Many laptops let you remove the CD-drive and replace it with a battery pack!
(Laptop makers have their own issues, along with Tablet PC makers, I’ll get to them too)
If, by some luck, the device does allow a 2nd battery … then the prohibitive cost of the additional battery keeps users away. You guys are not in the battery making/selling business. Make the batteries cheap so they are a no-brainer and corporations will scoop up multiple dozens of your devices (where you DO make money).
My company (Adeena) sells pocket pc devices to the companies affiliated to the American Moving and Storage Association (AMSA) and so I see these issues everyday … too little power, too little memory, etc, etc. Not even ONE of my customers complains about the size of the user manual or the screen (65k or 256k colors?) … the kinds of things for which online preview/review sites give PDA’s low marks for!
Wake up! PDA’s are not going to be consumer devices used by students and young adults hopping around times square. There is this other thing called “cell phone”. That takes care of that demographic.
PDAs today are the connector between desktops and on-site paperwork for the mobile and mostly blue collar workforce. PDAs are meant as a cheaper alternative to Tablet PC’s, not as an expensive alternative to cell phones.
Laptops are still only designed for use while sitting. Thats ok, thats why Tablet PC’s came out … to take up the slack where the laptops left off.
Now I’ll try to take on the Tablet PC and how it’s only aiming for less than 50% of it’s target market.
Look at it this way … Tablet PC’s, early on, made sense for the mobile executive, where his/her company was using the executive for a multi-million dollar contract, so throwing in a $2000 Tablet PC to help the executive get the contract was a no-brainer.
However, there is a limit to how many Tablet PC’s can be sold that way.
(Imagine Apple’s profits if the IPOD was aimed at the baby boomers only and not really towards the college kids. Yeah, you get the idea?)
In the real world, in the marketplace, outside of beta test users and beyond the world of climate controlled, glare-free, dust-free and comfortable leather chair-free the Tablet PC is a great tool.
The problem is that this market is extremely price-sensitive. These are people in transportation, healthcare, logistics and even education.
Healthcare? I must be kidding right …. ? wrong!
Just read the other day that hospitals and clinics spend only 2% of their annual budget/revenue towards IT infrastructure. Doctors with beepers or B&W Nokia’s are still the norm in many of these places!
Same with logistics and transportation … these companies are being squeezed from all sides, and reducing technology expenditure is the easiest way for them to keep operational costs low.
If you want to get better adoption for Tablet PC, stop looking at the trendy end of the market.
I like to call this new target market the unsexy industries.
Unsexy because very few technology companies look towards them, unsexy because people don’t design their products with them in mind and unsexy because IT companies assume there isn’t enough scope for growth in these industries.
(Of course, Symbol Technologies is making a killing in this market … and they still sell $1000+ Pocket PC devices because they are “industrial” ?? Are you kidding me?)
Why isn’t Dell in this marketplace? Why isn’t HP competing with Symbol? Why is Microsoft thinking of moving it’s mobile offerings just to SmartPhones? Why isn’t Toshiba targetting this market with the same toughbook-like quality devices?
Look at Nextel, learn. How many college students buy Nextel service and the … go on, say it …. unsexy looking phones provided by Nextel?
Does Nextel care? Going by their bottomline, they don’t need to.
Here’s a question for the Tablet PC faithful?
Media Center Tablet PC edition is just one end of the spectrum …
where are the details on a industrial-strength Blue Collar Tablet PC edition?
And remember, price is the problem … and it needs to be solved NOW.