On the topic of touch screen tablets we sure have come a long way in a short period of time, there’s no denying this fact. We can use our portable tablets for video conferencing, to record videos, listen to music, check emails and even rescue kittens out of trees according to Samsung.
Combined, tablet PC sales are off the charts, you can’t even begin to try and keep up with the plethora of new apps that are constantly being developed and the tablet computer industry is growing at an exponential rate. It’s now been over 16 months since the original iPad was released and many other model slates from various companies have since followed suit. In other words, it’s obvious that tablets are much more than just a short lived fad, an over-sized smartphone or a device that can’t do much else other than consume media.
With all that being said there are still quite a few features that tablet computers continue to lack, thus the reason for this article. I have selected 5 key features that I believe tablets should have but still don’t, at least not yet that is but of course despite all the hype and technological advancements these dazzling new devices are in fact still in their infancy. The following list is not in any particular order of importance.
Why aren’t more slates able to be inductively charged? The HP TouchPad was one of the first to have this ability, but as we all know that tablet is no longer being manufactured. It just makes sense to me that more companies would take something like this into consideration, but they haven’t really, at least not yet. The technology has existed for some time now so why aren’t companies making their tablet devices compatible with it?
What would be even better of course is self-powered tablets, how cool would that be? Of course a feature like this probably won’t become mainstream for a while yet, so I’m sure we can settle for inductive charging for now without any complaints. After all, you have to crawl/walk before you can run.
Many people have been patiently (or not so patiently in some cases) waiting for an iPad model that comes equipped with retina display. Of course there’s been no shortage of iPad 3 rumors the past few months, most recently that the newest iPad will come equipped with a retina display roughly around March of 2012. I guess we’ll just have to wait and see.
What Is Retina Display?
Retina Display boils down to pixel density, also known as resolution. Studies show that the human eye is capable of clearly viewing roughly 300 pixels per inch. Basically, higher resolution results in higher quality, more realistic and smoother looking text and images on a display screen.
Even today’s best touch screen tablets on the market with the most advanced displays fall under the 200 pixels per inch (PPI) range. The 7″ Galaxy Tab for example has a resolution of 600×1024 and 171 PPI. The Galaxy Tab 10.1 has 149 PPI with a resolution of 800×1280.
The 3.5″ Apple iPhone 4 has 640×960 resolution and 326 PPI. Getting such screen technology to work on smartphones is one thing however and matching that resolution on a larger capacitive touch screen tablet is a whole new challenge. Thus the reason for the delay of a retina display tablet.
Tablets are the perfect device to have biometric features integrated in them, but you don’t hear much about this for some reason. Fingerprint scanning, retinal scanners, sure this use to be so sci-fi many years ago but c’mon people let’s get up to speed here this is 2011 not 1811 after all.
High Quality Video Recording
Sure you can record video with most slates nowadays but if you’re looking to film a movie or capture high-def video forget it. Camera quality still has quite a ways to go as far as touch screen tablets are concerned.
I’ll admit, due to the shape and size of the average 10″ tablet it makes for an awkward device in regards to filming something of any great length. Mind you, there are tripods and other types of external equipment available to make the process easier and more stable.
Information and data travels incredibly fast these days. With ultra high-speed LTE connections and advanced mobile technology you can text, email or video chat with someone in real time practically no matter what part of the world they are located at. This is wonderful and all, but what about cases where guaranteed connectivity is critical though? This is where tablet PCs with satellite connections come to mind, and I don’t mean just AGPS or assisted GPS.
Advancements with 4G connections during the past few years have been incredible, we’ve made giant leaps in this area but in case of extreme and severe weather conditions such as a tornado, earthquake or as a most recent example something similar to hurricane Irene you cannot fully rely on a 4G connection to warn and notify people of such events because a 4G connection, however fantastic and advanced as it is, can still only be accessed if you are within the coverage area of any given server.
When it comes to avoiding injury or God forbid possibly even death during the event of a hurricane every second counts. I understand satellite connections are more expensive and require more infrastructure and so on, but it would be nice if the option did at least exist. If a tablet PC with satellite connectivity abilities can help save even one life by providing up to the second details then in my opinion it’s well worth it. Not to mention, it can be beneficial in other not so critical areas such as people who travel a lot and say for example are doing research in a desert or some other secluded area on the globe.
I understand that it has to be worthwhile and affordable for a company to provide such a service and the small customer base would be a large contributing factor. Nonetheless, I still believe there would be a market for this even if it is a smaller one compared to common day to day wireless services and usage.
What are some of your thoughts and opinions on the topics mentioned above? Do they sound like reasonable expectations and required features for tablet PCs by today’s standards or are they still too far ahead of our time as far as mainstream use is concerned? Are there any other features (or lack of) that you would suggest or feel deserve to be added to this list? What are some of the features you’d like to see in future slates?