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BlackBerry CEO: Tablet Market Is Dying

Soulskill posted about a year ago | from the wishful-thinking dept.

Blackberry 564

Nerval's Lobster writes "BlackBerry CEO Thorsten Heins believes that tablets will be dead by 2018. 'In five years I don't think there'll be a reason to have a tablet anymore,' he told an interviewer at the Milken Institute conference in Los Angeles, according to Bloomberg. 'Maybe a big screen in your workplace, but not a tablet as such. Tablets themselves are not a good business model.' That may come as a surprise to Apple, Google, Amazon and Samsung, all of which have built significant tablet businesses over the past few years. Research firm Strategy Analytics suggested in a research note earlier this month that the global tablet market hit 40.6 million units shipped in the first quarter of 2013, a significant rise from the 18.7 million shipped in the same quarter last year. So why would Heins offer such a pessimistic prediction when everyone else — from the research firms to the tablet-makers themselves — seems so full-speed-ahead? It's easy to forget sometimes that BlackBerry has its own tablet in the mix: the PlayBook, which was released to quite a bit of fanfare in early 2011 but failed to earn iPad-caliber sales. Despite that usefulness to developers, however, the PlayBook has become a weak contender in the actual tablet market. If Heins is predicting that market's eventual demise, it could be a coded signal that he intends to pull BlackBerry out of the tablet game, focusing instead on smartphones. It wouldn't be the first radical move the company's made in the past year."

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First (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43593725)

First Post!

I agree (2, Insightful)

DogDude (805747) | about a year ago | (#43593735)

I agree completely. Tablets are a fad. The form factor is terrible and the functionality is lacking. I think that most people are going to continue using phones and laptops.

Re:I agree (5, Insightful)

SuperKendall (25149) | about a year ago | (#43593777)

Who wants an automobile? The form factor is terrible; the tiny wheels can hardly get through a foot of mud or ford a stream. You have to fill it up with "gas" constantly, instead of simply letting the horses wander around in your pasture.

No, there's simply no future in the automobile, once people try them out and find how limiting they really are.

Re:I agree (5, Interesting)

Tmann72 (2473512) | about a year ago | (#43593947)

This isn't even remotely the same and you damn well know it. Horse drawn buggies existed for a very long time before cars and cars were seen as a natural progression of that mode of transportation. The fact we measure engines in horse-power to this day is a testament to that fact. Tablets could be seen as the next phase of computers, but the fact remains they are not as useful for many purposes as real computers are. Whereas with your car example a car completely and thoroughly replaced all functions of a horse drawn carriage in its entirety.

Re:I agree (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43594031)

I love how all the nerds who creamed their jeans over netbooks and chromebooks are in such a rush to declare tablets dead on arrival.

The difference between netbooks/chromebooks & a tablet? One has a keyboard attached... one uses a bluetooth keyboard.

Re:I agree (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43594185)

The difference between netbooks/chromebooks & a tablet? One has a keyboard attached... one uses a bluetooth keyboard.

And one has a touch centric interface and the other does not, and one sucks for content creation and the other does not...

Re:I agree (-1, Flamebait)

MrHanky (141717) | about a year ago | (#43594115)

SuperKendall is an Apple fanboi and will make any semi-plausible argument to support his master. Don't take his arguments seriously, he's just here to sell things.

Re:I agree (2)

sudden.zero (981475) | about a year ago | (#43594217)

Not in it's entirety! A car will not mow your lawn for you but a horse will :P

Re:I agree (1)

synapse7 (1075571) | about a year ago | (#43593985)

Probably also had better insurance rates.

Re:I agree (4, Insightful)

Kjella (173770) | about a year ago | (#43594085)

Who wants an automobile? The form factor is terrible; the tiny wheels can hardly get through a foot of mud or ford a stream. You have to fill it up with "gas" constantly, instead of simply letting the horses wander around in your pasture.

No, there's simply no future in the automobile, once people try them out and find how limiting they really are.

I heard something extremely similar in a discussion recently about the Tesla Model S, and it was in all seriousness. "foot of mud" and "ford a stream" was replaced with "drive a 1500 mile road trip" and "pull a trailer", replace "gas" with "charging". There was totally no way they could possibly have a future once people found out how limiting they really are. You can people said what you just wrote in full seriousness back in the day.

Re:I agree (2)

hedwards (940851) | about a year ago | (#43594233)

Except that chargers are not all over the place, and I'm sure there are plenty of places where you can go 1500 miles without having the opportunity to charge. What's more, even if you do have a charger available, due to the lengthy time it takes to charge, you might not have the luxury of plugging it in.

It's less of an issue for gasoline and diesel cars because of the ubiquitous gas stations and the short period of time it takes to refill the gas tank.

I'm sure that in the long run it will be solved, they solved the mud and stream fording by building up the interstate highways so that it wasn't an issue. I'm sure that when they have more charging stations and can figure out how to make the batteries charge more efficiently, that the 1500 mile road trip standard will be less important.

Re:I agree (1)

TWiTfan (2887093) | about a year ago | (#43594265)

Ug no like horses. Ug walk. Ug think horses only good for meat.

Re:I agree (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43593821)

Exactly. The major issue is that tablets are great content consumption devices for watching video or reading but piss poor content creation devices. Try to write anything more than a few sentences or code on one, try to edit video, images, etc.

Re:I agree (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43593897)

It may be news to most nerds, but the vast majority of electronics purchasers use gadgets purely for content consumption, not creation.

Re:I agree (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43594127)

I really like watching movies on my laptop. The screen stays up when I'm in bed and I can lay down. I have to prop my tablet up on a pillow. My laptop is also much easier to type on.

Re:I agree (1)

saveferrousoxide (2566033) | about a year ago | (#43594231)

I have to prop my tablet up on a pillow

OH!! the HUMANITY!! ;)

Re:I agree (1)

hedwards (940851) | about a year ago | (#43594255)

I don't know about that, even my grandmother used to use her computer for email, which was much less efficient on a tablet than on even an entry level netbook.

Re:I agree (1)

firex726 (1188453) | about a year ago | (#43593917)

Well I think part of that is the UI in place. Many SW devs will in effect replace the mouse pointer with the finger on a tablet, which simply will not do, and the SW ends up being hard to use for any length of time.

Re:I agree (5, Insightful)

mmcxii (1707574) | about a year ago | (#43593933)

The major issue is that tablets are great content consumption devices for watching video or reading but piss poor content creation devices.

This is like comparing the number of people who own music versus the number of people who play music. "Content creation" hasn't been on the radar of most people since pre-recorded media has been made available at a good price point. I remember being about 12 or 13 years old with a Commodore 64. Of the 6 other kids I knew at the time who owned computers about 5 of us could code simple games and such. That's roughly 85%. How many kids can code today? The difference is that for a 12 year old pre-recorded media was too expensive and my parents weren't shelling out 20 dollars for the latest SSI title every other week.

Not that old chestnut (2)

SuperKendall (25149) | about a year ago | (#43593955)

The major issue is that tablets are great content consumption devices for watching video or reading but piss poor content creation devices.

The real issue is that anyone still thinks that.

People who actually own tablets know they can be great for creation also.

Re:Not that old chestnut (1, Insightful)

BitZtream (692029) | about a year ago | (#43594017)

In my experience, the only people who make those sort of statements were either paid a metric fuckton to do such a project by a tablet maker so they can get some news ... and people that are so bad at 'creating content' that the tablet being a shitty way to do it is going to have no measurable effect on their output.

Re:Not that old chestnut (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43594117)

In my experience, the only people who make those sort of statements were either paid a metric fuckton to do such a project by a tablet maker so they can get some news

In my experience, the only people who make the kinds of statements you just did are assholes who believe their opinion controls the world when in fact nobody gives a shit.

Big fucking deal, in your little world, you don't want to believe something. That doesn't make it a fact, just an opinion; and like assholes, everyone has one.

Re:Not that old chestnut (4, Insightful)

hedwards (940851) | about a year ago | (#43594271)

I disagree, unless you're plugging a keyboard into it, they are piss poor as a means of creating content. At which point, you have a device that's barely any smaller than a laptop and quite a bit slower.

are you kidding? (1)

Chirs (87576) | about a year ago | (#43594299)

I'd say they're okay for creation at best...at least the kind that I do.

Given the choice I'd *far* rather use a full-sized keyboard/mouse and big monitor (1920x1200 but I want to go bigger) for just about anything creative--writing code, retouching photos, editing video, or even just writing this comment.

Re:I agree (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43594077)

And what percentage of computer users are actually using it to create content? I use a computer mostly to write code. Just about everyone else in my family uses a computer primarily to consume content.

Re:I agree (1)

HaZardman27 (1521119) | about a year ago | (#43594169)

Which is exactly why my Nexus 7, which while my wife and I appreciate very much, mostly stays on the nightstand if we're not traveling. It's a great device to watch a show on before bed, read a bok, or do some light browsing, but with my line of work and hobbies I'm almost always near a desktop. That's also why the $200 price point for the Nexus 7 was great for me, despite its limited storage capacity, but the $400+ for a larger tablet is too high for what I'm interested in a tablet for.

Re:I agree (2)

synapse7 (1075571) | about a year ago | (#43593833)

However inconvenient they may be for certain uses, they are still convenient to carry around and are "popular". What would replace tablets? phones with large screens, essentially a tablet. I don't agree. Even if he can't catch the gravy train, RIM is missing out on market penetration with the BBOS or whatever it is now.

However, I wish Microsoft thought this way and produced separate tablet and desktop operation systems.

Re:I agree (4, Interesting)

Teckla (630646) | about a year ago | (#43593869)

I agree completely. Tablets are a fad. The form factor is terrible and the functionality is lacking. I think that most people are going to continue using phones and laptops.

Laptops are bulky and heavy. Netbooks offer a terrible user experience (mostly thanks to Microsoft forcing lousy specs on vendors as a prerequisite for Windows Starter licensing).

I've taken my iPad with me on my last few business trips. It was light and with a big enough display for comfortable use without being too big (or too small like smartphone displays). (Although I'm not happy Apple has already abandoned updates on my not-even-3-years-old iPad 1 -- might have to consider an Android tablet next time.)

Not sure where the market will go, but tablets aren't a fad for me, they're just the best compromise of all the alternatives (when traveling, at least).

Re: I agree (1, Insightful)

tysonedwards (969693) | about a year ago | (#43593979)

I've got news for you... Most Android manufacturers stop providing updates the day their devices hit the market. If your sole concern is that yoy want a tablet that is going to have updates for years to come, there are a variety of Windows slates on the market.

Re: I agree (2)

MightyMartian (840721) | about a year ago | (#43594035)

My Nexus 7 flashed up an update to the operating system about ten minutes after I bought it. My wife's Kobo Arc has had two system updates since Christmas.

Re: I agree (1)

Teckla (630646) | about a year ago | (#43594081)

I've got news for you... Most Android manufacturers stop providing updates the day their devices hit the market. If your sole concern is that yoy want a tablet that is going to have updates for years to come, there are a variety of Windows slates on the market.

I've gotten burned by Microsoft enough times over the years (decades, actually) that I fundamentally don't trust them anymore.

That being said, next time I'll be more careful to research devices where I can reasonably expect they'll get updates for at least 5+ years.

Re: I agree (1)

mattack2 (1165421) | about a year ago | (#43594267)

Which, as has already been pointed out, does NOT include most (any?) Android devices.

BTW, I agree with your main point.

Re: I agree (1)

symbolset (646467) | about a year ago | (#43594335)

Updates for legacy Android devices are handled by the Cyanogen team, and others in the modding community. It's a nuisance, but less of a nuisance than installing Windows upgrades. Here is your list of supported devices [cyanogenmod.org] .

BTW: Android for tablets is barely over two years old. The pace of change in tablet devices is so swift that you're unlikely to be able to run any device longer than that before it's hopelessly obsolete. The first few tablets were pretty bad. The top end this year will have 8-core 64bit processors with better than PS3 graphics and ~300 dpi displays. Five more years of such progress will bring, well, I don't know what - but I'm sure it will be amazing.

Re: I agree (1)

Psyborgue (699890) | about a year ago | (#43594219)

Like the Windows 7 phones that will never get 8? Compare that to an iPhone or a Nexus device. You're right that a lot of android phone manufacturers suck at releasing updates, but iPads and Nexus devices do get updates for years. There is really no guarantee that will be the case with Windows RT, or even the 8 tablets (at least not officially).

Re: I agree (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43594029)

>> Although I'm not happy Apple has already abandoned updates on my not-even-3-years-old iPad 1 -- might have to consider an Android tablet next time.)

Good joke. Apple is the best in the business for providing updates. The closest you will get on the Android side is the Nexus 10 and that's just a theory that they will update it long term. Most android devices are not updated more than one version.

Re:I agree (0)

DogDude (805747) | about a year ago | (#43594331)

So you're saying that tablets have an audience of people who are too infirm to carry around a laptop that weighs a few pounds...?

Re:I agree (2)

prelelat (201821) | about a year ago | (#43593885)

I think that's hard to say for sure. Phones are getting bigger and bigger and you can get some now that I would classify as a tablet anyways. So if that's what your suggesting then yes the tablets now are going to go away. I highly doubt it though. They aren't usually good for work devices but as technology in them keeps improving they are turning out some really awesome features. The note 10.1(I currently own), surface, lenovo, and a few others have wacom tech in them. While it's not as nice to use as say a cintiq it could be(I believe the mike at penny-arcade reviewed the surface for this).

In the classroom(I'm a tech at a school) they can serve as a tool to assist in research, building video/audio projects, and so on. The new tablets out now have attachable keyboards that can make them operate like small laptops. The windows tablets can have full office suites for some projects. It's not going to replace the cart of laptops we have or the lab of computers but it's a huge classroom resource.

I'm not saying that the tablet isn't a fad I could have raved about netbooks as well and the well kind of faded. But to say that the functionality is lacking is just obsurd. They have a place be it on a work bench with a schematic(it's easier to look at something flat then up at a screen sometimes) in the kitchen as a recipe book to on the road as a very portable video player, magazine/book. There are uses for them but saying in 5 years something new won't come down the pipe to replace them is silly. I'm sure everyone wants the next ~40 million unit device.

Re:I agree (1)

mattack2 (1165421) | about a year ago | (#43594329)

I think that's hard to say for sure. Phones are getting bigger and bigger and you can get some now that I would classify as a tablet anyways.

AKA "phablet". Yes, it's dumb, but it's widespread.

Re:I agree (3, Interesting)

gstoddart (321705) | about a year ago | (#43593941)

I agree completely. Tablets are a fad. The form factor is terrible and the functionality is lacking.

Well, that's an valid opinion, but I don't agree with you.

My tablet isn't used for work, so the form factor is actually quite nice for what I use it for (surf the web, movies, email when I travel). And the functionality is exactly what I want out of it.

There's just some stuff I have no interest in doing on my phone. I like the bigger size of the fondle-slab. My phone is too small to watch a movie or read a book.

I expect you and Mr. Heins will be proven wrong over time. BlackBerry's tablet was crap, but that doesn't mean people who own tablets don't like them.

Re:I agree (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43594235)

They'll be proven right eventually, but not about the 5 year timetable. Once we can stretch or unfold a tablet-sized screen out of our phones, tablets are done. I do not expect this in 5 years.

Re:I agree (1)

ganjadude (952775) | about a year ago | (#43593953)

I said the same about netbooks. I thought they were a fad (and still do since my dad is the only person I know who enjoys using a sub 14 inch laptop) I have a tablet, Ive had a few over the years (yes before the iPad) and truthfully there is one maybe 2 that I find usefull today and the reason They are useful is that they have keyboard docking stations. I am talking of the transformer series and while I havent worked with it yet the windows surface, but it looks like it does have potential

Re:I agree (1)

MrHanky (141717) | about a year ago | (#43594171)

Netbooks were a fad, and the reason for that is that you can get an i3 laptop now for pretty much the same price you'd pay for a well-specced netbook just a few years ago. Personally, I had high hopes for the Transformer type of computer, if only there was a good OS for it. Perhaps Linux with KDE5.

Re:I agree (3, Informative)

neverwhere9 (2597405) | about a year ago | (#43593983)

I have a 7" tablet and I disagree. I don't have to pay monthly for a phone because I can use Text+, it's smaller and more portable than a laptop, and the screen is the perfect size for eReading. I mostly watch youtube videos on mine because the screen is better than my laptop (yes I have a ~$250 youtube machine), but I know students who love them for school and artists who use them to draw. It all depends on what you want to do with it. If you want to code or write a novel, then the laptop is obviously the better choice.

Re:I agree (1)

GodfatherofSoul (174979) | about a year ago | (#43594037)

Tablets obviate laptops for all but those who genuinely need a mobile work environment; e.g. students, work-at-home folk, etc. Plus, tablets do "mobile" better than a laptop. Try traveling on vacation with a laptop as compared to a tablet or looking up that actor from that thing while sitting on your couch, or reading a recipe you found online with a laptop. I've got a laptop as well as a tablet, but I will RARELY if ever move mine now that I have the tablet.

Re:I agree (1)

Aerokii (1001189) | about a year ago | (#43594135)

Eh, different tools for different jobs. Tablets have their uses, especially as content consumption devices and for those who have difficulty using regular computers, while regular computers are usually much easier to do work on. Or, we go the gaming route- tablets have some fun little games out there that people have used to waste a ton of time and money, but traditional computers allow for some pretty darn awesome things too. It's just a matter of preference and what you want to use it for.

Re:I agree (1)

hedwards (940851) | about a year ago | (#43594205)

I'm not so sure about that. I could see something like the Asus Transformer becoming the standard in a few years.

The main problem that Tablets have, IMHO, is that they are an awkward compromise that nobody has really figured out how to make work. Without a keyboard, the input tasks for text take forever compared with touch typing, and you have to give up a portion of the screen in order to have the onscreen keyboard. Because they need to be so small, you have to give up processing power and the ability to replace components.

But, I do like the basic idea behind the Transformer, and I think that's going to be much more common in the future as it seems to be a pretty good compromise that actually has real world utility.

Should be in reverse! (5, Funny)

Virtucon (127420) | about a year ago | (#43593743)

World to Blackberry: In five years there'll be no reason to own a Blackberry.

Re:Should be in reverse! (1)

stanlyb (1839382) | about a year ago | (#43593815)

Blackberry what? But i like blueberry..

hahaha. oh they're not joking (4, Funny)

redemtionboy (890616) | about a year ago | (#43593749)

I might be able to take their word seriously if they didn't paint the blackberry playbook in a positive light at all. After running one of the worst launches in history, no wonder that thing fell flat on it's face. My favorite review said something along the lines of "It's like paying $200 to see Bruce Springsteen and having to settle for a homeless guy in the subway air guitaring it"

Re:hahaha. oh they're not joking (3, Funny)

larry bagina (561269) | about a year ago | (#43593837)

Sounds like he ate too much of his own dog food.

in fact (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43593751)

In five years, I don't think there will be a BlackBerry market

Yea (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43593753)

Because BlackBerry is doing so well these days, ofc they know what's going on. I'd trust them more than Apple for example or even Samsung.

And this is why BlackBerry will go out of business (5, Insightful)

mkraft (200694) | about a year ago | (#43593761)

BlackBerry seems incapable of judging where there market is going. That's why they were blindsided when the iPhone came out. They still had a chance to adapt, but they pretty much pretended like the iPhone didn't exist. Even after Android came out they had their heads in the sand. By the time they finally woke up, it was too late.

Re:And this is why BlackBerry will go out of busin (2)

Psyborgue (699890) | about a year ago | (#43594305)

They didn't want to alienate the people who loved their devices because they had full physical keyboards. They tried a full touchscreen device with the Storm and Storm II, but it failed miserably. The touch screens [wikipedia.org] were horrible, buggy, and their attempts to provide tactile feedback were not very well done (you had to not only touch a key, but also apply pressure, which made it awkward). The Torch was a nice device, with a decent touchscreen and a full slide out keyboard, but it was, as you note, way late to the party.

Hahahaha! (4, Insightful)

MightyMartian (840721) | about a year ago | (#43593763)

From the company bleeding money for the last three years because it has absolutely no idea what customers want, comes the grand declaration "Customers won't want tablets."

Maybe if Blackberry had released a tablet that had full access to the Android market, they might have sold some. My daughter got a playbook from her boyfriend's parents a few months ago, and while the hardware is nothing to sneeze at, the fact that you couldn't even install the Netflix app was a revelation to me as to just how clueless RIM/Blackberry really is.

Re: Hahahaha! (4, Funny)

tysonedwards (969693) | about a year ago | (#43594013)

Nothing says f-you, future mom-and-dad like a BlackBerry Playbook.

Re:Hahahaha! (1)

ganjadude (952775) | about a year ago | (#43594055)

Well to be fair that is like saying

If only android had access to the Itunes store when it first came out it might be selling better today

I mean I wish all devices could access all stores. but I would blame netflix for that just about as much as I would blackberry

Re:Hahahaha! (0)

RobbieCrash (834439) | about a year ago | (#43594317)

Yeah, bleeding money. Like 2.5B profit in 2010 [zdnet.com] , 3.4B in 2011, [bgr.com] , 1.1B in 2012 [marketwire.com] .

I dunno about you, but I wish I were bleeding money like that. 7 Billion dollars is a lot of blood.

DCW (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43593765)

Blackberry is dying. That's correct

Dead company walking.

End of tablets? Not likely (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43593769)

Considering that laptops are basically turning in to hybid tablets, I believe you will see the opposite. I believe that laptops will continue to reduce in size and become high-end tablets. Dell just released a really cool 18inch i-series tablet.

Re:End of tablets? Not likely (1)

Tmann72 (2473512) | about a year ago | (#43593973)

This really hasn't caught on in the main stream. If anything it's mostly the laptop manufacturers struggling to stay relevant with gimmicks. For business purposes even those tablet/laptop hybrids really aren't that useful. Hell even for school when I lugged a laptop to class I'd still prefer a more durable laptop than these gimmicky looking laptop/tablet cases.

Three words... (4, Insightful)

alanshot (541117) | about a year ago | (#43593771)

Screen Real Estate.

There is some stuff you Just. Cant Do. On a phone. The screen is too small.

IF his idea that phones will be a little bigger, do we really want to look like an idiot walking around with a giant brick to our head? Or have to wory about always using a bluetooth earpiece? And where will you stick that larger than you prefer phone?

IMHO an iPhone 5 is starting to get a little too big. The larger samsungs are even worse.

Re:Three words... (2)

CMYKjunkie (1594319) | about a year ago | (#43593883)

Amen! I've actually been thinking of, at the end of my contract of course, ditching my iPhone for a "burner" and then getting an iPad for the screen real estate. I find it wasteful to have an iPhone and a tablet, but just a tablet with a cheapola phone makes sense.

Re:Three words... (1)

Tmann72 (2473512) | about a year ago | (#43593991)

1) Some phones are already insanely massive and are basically tablets. Some people don't care about holding a brick to their face. 2) Samsung is outselling the iphone because of those larger screens. Poll after consumer poll constantly pegs screen size as the reason.

Re:Three words... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43594247)

I actually want something bigger than my 4th gen iPad. A 13-14 inch screen so that it matches Letter or A4 paper, but even larger would be better. Of course it would be heavy so I'm happy to wait until battery tech improves, but I feel quiet limited on my IPad. I hate zooming in when reading. Text is too small.

Re:Three words... (1)

BasilBrush (643681) | about a year ago | (#43594251)

I suspect his argument is about physical keyboards rather than size. Maybe they have a plan to replace their Playbook with something that has a keyboard.

Re:Three words... (1)

steveha (103154) | about a year ago | (#43594337)

do we really want to look like an idiot walking around with a giant brick to our head?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WRLRjKCGHek [youtube.com]

P.S. My favorite bit is at the very end of the video.

In other news... (1)

Frosty Piss (770223) | about a year ago | (#43593773)

...Apple CEO Tim Cook believes that RIM will be dead by 2018. 'In five years I don't think there'll be a reason to buy a BlackBerry anymore'.

Re:In other news... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43593929)

...Most people believe that RIM will be dead by 2014. 'In one year I don't think there'll be a reason to buy a BlackBerry anymore'.

TFTFY.

Re:In other news... (1)

gstoddart (321705) | about a year ago | (#43594025)

Is there any compelling reason to buy a BlackBerry now?

They've always been heavily focused on business users who need to view Excel documents on their phone and connect to a corporate Exchange server.

But for everybody else, there's plenty of other options besides BlackBerry. And my wife's experience with the PlayBook I bought her -- well, that isn't exactly making me think I'd ever buy anything from them again, because it didn't provide the best user experience.

Re:In other news... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43594105)

By 2018 the whole landscape could have changed. Apple could be on the ropes again and AMD whipping Intel again...

Tablets have their place. They are going (have) to replace huge swaths of what people were buying netbooks and laptops for. However, the laptop market will not go away. The keyboard interface is just too useful.

Now that Jobs is gone we have not seen anything really radical come out of Apple. It has been mostly polishing the chrome. Which they did from 85-99 (that got them real far...) . My money is on Amazon/Samsung taking this market away from Apple. Jobs was willing to risk it all. The new guys will never do that. The 30% of the top that all devs pay is going to hurt Apple in the long run. The days of just making an app for iOS and doing ok are long gone. Its work now. Why not do the same work on android and pay less...

Blackberry knows what they are talking about (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43593783)

Since they are in the tablet biz and their other form-factors have done so much better...

Talk to the hand.. (0)

stanlyb (1839382) | about a year ago | (#43593787)

Keep talking, no one is listening anyway :D

What do you use your tablet for? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43593799)

I personally don't have a tablet as I can't find any use for it. My phone does everything the tablet can do (except having a bigger screen, but bigger is not always better) and if I want to do something more productive I start up my computer.
Most people seems to just use it for entertainment - and if that is the case, there is no reason to upgrade it everytime there is a new model.

Re:What do you use your tablet for? (1)

CannonballHead (842625) | about a year ago | (#43594073)

We use it for media consumption primarily. Don't want to drag your laptop to bed for reading a couple web pages, articles, Facebook, or checking your e-mail? Tablet is nice. Want to just sit on the couch and read some articles, e-mail, or Facebook? Tablet is nice. How about reading PDFs? Tablet is nice. What about when you're out and about and just want something for the occasional downtime or coffee shop? Tablet is nice.

Phones could fill this niche, too, and I know many people that use their phone for this ... but, having used some phone-sized screen devices ... I really do like the tablet better for a lot. I can actually see pictures inline in the webpage without having to horizontally scroll or zoom way out. I can actually watch a video WITH MY WIFE (or friend or whoever I happen to be with in a coffee shop at the time)! Shocking.

Sure, for browsing or reading little things, phones may be fine. But for ... more prolonged and "serious" media consumption (books, articles, webpages) and "social" consumption (watching a movie together, even if that's youtube or something), I really prefer a larger screen.

"there is no reason to upgrade it everytime there is a new model" - couldn't you say the same thing about basically everything? When's the last time you NEEDED to upgrade your phone? your desktop? your laptop? Anyways, we don't upgrade our tablet very often. I used to have a Viewsonic gTablet, replaced that with an ASUS Transformer (TF300). I've had the TF300 for just about a year now and don't plan on upgrading, at least as long as ASUS continues to provide updates. But I haven't upgraded my desktop computer (except with an SSD) in ... I dunno, 6 years? I'm still on DDR2 and an Intel Q6600.

The "oooooh, new iPhone! must have!" people are crazier than the tablet people, seriously. I know far more people who have the same tablet they had a year ago than phone. Most people seem to want to upgrade their phone every time a new one comes out... but people seem more content with their tablet. I dunno why. Marketing, perhaps? Or software updates? Then again, I guess the "new phone!!!" people tend to be iPhone users (and I do know a lot of people that still have iPhone 4s).

Re:What do you use your tablet for? (1)

jonbryce (703250) | about a year ago | (#43594075)

I use it when I want to get information quickly. I can get to my emails or to a website in less than a second from picking it up, whereas with a laptop it takes maybe 20-30 seconds if it is on standby, or a couple of minutes if it is switched off. Yes you can do these things on a phone, but the bigger screen does make a difference. If I see an email that requires a reply of more than a few words, then I will get out my laptop or go over to the desktop to compose the reply on a proper keyboard.

I agree there is no reason to upgrade everytime there is a new model. I'm quite happy with my iPad 2. If I was buying one today, then I would buy the iPad 4 or possibly one of Google's offerings as they are better, and will last longer before they become obsolete, but as it stands, Apple will probably release the iPad 6 before I consider replacing my existing slab.

Re:What do you use your tablet for? (1)

MightyMartian (840721) | about a year ago | (#43594095)

One of the big reasons I bought a Nexus 7 is because we get a helluva lot of PDFs where I work, and I don't want to print them all off or drag my notebook in to every meeting. I installed a VPN client and a file system browser on my Nexus that allows me to get on to the file server and directly access PDFs. The Adobe PDF android client is good enough for that purpose. I do quite a bit of email on it, have an ereader and do most of my leisure reading on it. It's a handy device with a long battery life. I like it quite a bit. It could be better, but I picked up a 32gb model for cheap, so can't complain. It's a nice device.

Tablets are already dead (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43593809)

Mats and tables are the future!

This just in... (5, Funny)

Brucelet (1857158) | about a year ago | (#43593823)

Guy who was late to the party says the party was boring anyway.

Two words (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43593853)

Market saturation.

The people with disposable income that want gadgets have them already, the people who need to do work own ultrabooks and laptops, the consumer level crowd have smartphones that are nearly at "I can't fit this in my pocket anymore."

We just witnessed a microcosm of what's happening in the PC market happen in the blink of an eye.

BlackBerry Is Dying (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43593889)

BlackBerry Is Dying

In some ways, he's right (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43593893)

I think he's right, but perhaps not in the way that people think.

I predict that within 5-10 years we'll see tablets that are really hybrids of today's laptops and tablets. They'll have the small tablet screen and run tablet apps but will also run full-fleged apps when given a keyboard and maybe a plug-in monitor or portable 15" LCD display.

So, I think tablets (as in small and almost-but-not-quite laptops) will die.

It is just a fashion accessory (1)

DrGeorge995 (2659661) | about a year ago | (#43593899)

Most tablets sold are used for cutting fruits in games and just because "everyone has one".The years to come will test its real value and whether the tablet has any real uses. I believe that the sales will start declining soon , because it is not really essential to buisness or home and its uses are limited since phones can do most of the stuff a tablet can plus all the phone functionality. I am dissapointed by software makers that decided that they should ignore all their customers using laptops and desktops,and started adjusting everything just to fit in the tablet market(like windows8)

Personal experience (4, Informative)

Picass0 (147474) | about a year ago | (#43593961)

I've had several smart phones but recently picked up my first tablet. I do most of my smart phone stuff on the tablet now. I'm now looking at the end of my current cell contract and realizing I'd be better off going to a basic cell.

I have an Asus Transformer TF700T tablet with a detachable keyboard. I can VNC remote desktop. I can access SMB shares. I can game, surf, and do stuff I never would do on a phone (or Blackberry).

The thing in my house that's collecting dust? My old dell laptop. If I need to do real work I'm on my desktop. It's been months since I opened the screen on my laptop. I'm going to wipe it and give it to the kids. There's your dying form factor.

Re:Personal experience (1)

CannonballHead (842625) | about a year ago | (#43594083)

The detachable keyboard is remarkably handy when you need to ... say, type an e-mail. :)

Cmdr Taco, is that you? (3, Funny)

drunken_boxer777 (985820) | about a year ago | (#43593969)

Did he hire Cmdr Taco to perform his market research?

Says a Man Out-of-Touch with the Education Market (5, Interesting)

HBBisenieks (2884173) | about a year ago | (#43593975)

As someone who works in educational technology, I can say with confidence that tablets are going to be sticking around for well beyond 2018. Take a look at all the schools that have or are starting 1:1 programs, and you'll see that more than half of those programs are using iPads or some other tablet. Look at the OLPC tablets and what's been happening with them. Certainly there's a certain group of people who might not "get" tablets because they're not "traditional" computers, but that does nothing to discount how intuitive they can be, especially to children and the elderly. No, you're not going to be doing extensive command-line work from a tablet, but nobody is suggesting that tablets will entirely overthrow traditional computers. Tablets are an educator's dream. You don't have to teach a child to use a mouse--they just touch what they want. Hell, you hardly have to teach any of the basic functions of a tablet to a child at all; they can figure just about everything out themselves.

I agree (1)

Tmann72 (2473512) | about a year ago | (#43594015)

Despite blackberry's performance lately I tend to agree. I've got a iPad 3rd gen, an android tablet, and a Samsung s3. I use the s3 everyday for all the same tasks I would have used tablets for. I'm not even sure the other two tablets are charged right now. When I do real computing I use my laptop.

Yep. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43594021)

Oh, and the laptop is dying.
And the desktop.
And the smart phone.
And TVs.
And VGA.
And DVI.
Have I left anything out? I'm sure there's plenty.
Some random dude, especially an idiot CEO who's only proficient at spending money, saying "THIS IS DYING" isn't newsworthy, and they're almost always wrong.

Google Goggles (1)

BenSchuarmer (922752) | about a year ago | (#43594041)

Fun to say and fun to type! On the other hand, I'm not sure how two people could share (view, point, manipulate) the same image with google goggles.

Are tablets going to go away? (4, Insightful)

skine (1524819) | about a year ago | (#43594069)

Of course the tablet market isn't dying. It could possibly be described as a bubble at the moment, but that doesn't mean that that sales are going to disappear within the next five years.

The issue is more that tablets are essentially as powerful as they'll need to be for the next five years, if not longer. They're designed to be highly portable devices that can access the internet and be used as ebook readers, but are large enough to be easier to read from than a smartphone. Aside from the people who need to have the new shiny, most people who own or are thinking of buying a tablet will only upgrade when it can no longer handle their needs, much like Windows XP computers.

Re:Are tablets going to go away? (3, Insightful)

Ironhandx (1762146) | about a year ago | (#43594239)

You've got it nailed.

Those that have a first gen tablet may upgrade to reduce lag, but everyone thats buying one right now? Its entirely possible they won't need to upgrade except in cases of breaking the existing one for 5+ years. You're going to hit saturation similar to whats happening with desktop and laptop PCs right now, except I believe the total saturation number is much lower than for PCs and we're going to hit that number much sooner because the days of needing to upgrade a tablet every 2-3 years... never existed in the first place.

I disagree (3, Insightful)

asmkm22 (1902712) | about a year ago | (#43594139)

I think tablets are fine for the niche they fill. They make great little consumption devices that are somewhat inexpensive, and handle web content just fine. I have a few sitting around at home that we can just pick up and check email with, or my kid can go watch netflix on the bed, or whatever. They certainly aren't going to be replaces computers for anyone but the most casual of consumers, but they do fill a technology gap very nicely.

One thing that he hints at, which I agree with, is that tablets aren't going to change too much in the next five years. Overall sales will level off once everyone has one, and I do suspect the wifi-only versions will be the primary sellers after that. Prices will probably settle in the 100-200 dollar range, at most, with plenty of $50 options. They'll basically take the same route that MP3 players took 10 years ago.

tl;dr: blackberry butthurt tears (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43594155)

so many delicious tears, mah bucket cannot hold dem all

I'm so confused. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43594191)

Not a single "Netcraft confirms it." This just isn't the slashdot I used to know. Now get off my lawn.

Translation (1)

eWarz (610883) | about a year ago | (#43594201)

Translation: Tablets are skyrocketing, just not ours. Maybe if we tell everyone tablets are dying they'll buy ours!

tablets (4, Interesting)

hypergreatthing (254983) | about a year ago | (#43594215)

They were in star trek. They'll be around. Everyone likes phones for communication. Tablets will replace books eventually. Tablets will replace phones even.
Think about a tablet with a flexible screen. One that you can roll up. Now think about a cell phone type stick device that you can put to your ear. Now think about pulling out a display for when you need to use it's screen. And then when you're done just let it roll back into the device.
Welcome to the next tablet device.
Blackberry is completely short sighted.

Cheap tablets can be useful. (3, Interesting)

Robert Frazier (17363) | about a year ago | (#43594225)

I have a couple of cheap tablets with the Allwinner A10 SOC. One is running Ice Cream Sandwich, and one is running Jelly Bean. The Ice Cream Sandwich one could be running Jelly Bean, if it were worth the bother. So, they are reasonably up to date. Use? One is used mostly as a glorified remote control for MPD[1]. But it also lets me know when I have emails (I go to a real computer to deal with the emails) and is used as a clock. The other is used as a clock, and both a MPD remote control and streamer. Very useful they are. I can only afford to use them like this because they are reasonably inexpensive. (I even have an old Nokia N800 in the shed (garage) which I use as a MPD remote control and streamer.)

They are fine when used in this way, and I think that the touch interface helps to make them ideal MPD remote controls.

[1] I used to use it for steaming as well, but now have a Raspberry PI with pulseaudio in place of it, so I can have the music in that room in sync with the music in other rooms.

Best wishes,
Bob

Tablet instead of laptop/desktop...I agree (1)

aklinux (1318095) | about a year ago | (#43594229)

But I think the tablet is just to useful in mobile situations, and phone screens are often just to small. For my work purposes, Real Estate, 10" tablets are useful, but cumbersome. Phone screens are to small when trying to show a client something. 7" to 8" seems to be a good balance.

I still keep a desktop & laptop [Chrome devices] going for the 'hard core' stuff. Marketing, word processing, contract writing and the like.

Not sure I agree with this.... (1)

erp_consultant (2614861) | about a year ago | (#43594263)

Keep in mind...this assessment is coming from a company that released a tablet...without the ability to use email on it. You couldn't use what is arguably the best feature on the Blackberry...rock solid email integration. I used to think that tablets were going to be a fad too. But I'm seeing more and more of them and at the end of the day, most people are consumers of content not producers. Sure, tablets suck for coding but how many people are coding vs. the general public? A very small percentage I would venture. Are tablets going to replace laptops and desktops? I doubt it. But I see tablets evolving, not dying out.

To me the most compelling feature of the tablet is all day battery life. With a desktop, you're tethered to the desk. With a laptop you've got mobility but only for a few hours. Then you're looking for an electrical outlet to charge up. Only the tablet and smartphone currently offers 8-10 hours of battery life and that's huge. When laptop batteries can last that long I see a big upswing in laptop sales. Until then, I see more and more tablets getting sold.

The other thing tablets have going for them is that they are so damn easy to use. Compare iOS or Android to Windows. Windows is far more complicated and, for a lot of people, they just want the simplicity of the tablet OS.

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