(+) Will Your Next Primary Computer be a Tablet or a Smartphone?

The following is a Plus Edition article written by and copyright by Dick Eastman. 

One of the trends amongst today’s computer users is the move from traditional desktop and laptop computers to tablet computers and also to the so-called smartphones. While the desktop and laptop computers remain much more powerful than the smaller devices, the tablets and smartphones are all “more than good enough” for most tasks, and their mobility is proving to be much more useful than using a big computer on the desk or even a laptop in a briefcase.

71.44 million tablet computers were sold worldwide in 2011 but that number more than doubled to 163.3 million in 2017. See https://www.statista.com/statistics/272070/global-tablet-shipments-by-quarter/ for the details. The statistics for smartphones also grew during that time although exact numbers are difficult to find.

Most of the time, many of us use our computers primarily for accessing the World Wide Web, for Facebook (which is one of the popular services on the World Wide Web), for word processing, and for email. These functions are all that many of us need day-to-day. For more advanced uses, both Microsoft Office and the Apple’s equivalent productivity programs are available for tablets. For me and for many others, these tasks are all I need perhaps 99% of time.

In fact, when sitting in the living room and watching television, I generally use the iPad or even a smartphone as a convenient computer at my side. When I want to check sports scores of other games or to read more about an actor in a movie I am watching, using a tablet computer is far more convenient than getting up and walking over to the big desktop computer in the next room. When talking with my next-door neighbor in the yard about last night’s big game, I can quickly retrieve the game statistics or even watch the entire game on streaming video, although I probably will be using the smartphone, not a tablet, when I am in the backyard.

Millions of other computer owners are doing the same. For most of my tasks, the tablet or smartphone is more than “good enough.” I suspect the same is true for you as well. I really don’t see why most of us need more power for checking email messages, surfing the web, using Facebook, playing games, or writing newsletter articles.

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