∞ Modern tablet concept is Apple's; everything else is just a feature

Tablets have been around for years, and while there was a lot of interest in what the platform could do, they never really caught on. It wasn’t until Apple released the iPad that tablets became a popular device.

[ad#Google Adsense 300×250 in story]Apple didn’t invent the tablet, but they did perfect the way we use tablets in our modern lifestyle. The concept of the tablet is now Apple’s.

The proof is all around us. Look at Apple’s competition — everything being released today looks and acts exactly like an iPad.

Another point to consider is that nobody seems to want anything but an iPad. There are Android tablets, HP’s TouchPad, and RIM’s non-functional PlayBook — still consumers choose the iPad. Why bother with the imitators when you can have the real thing.

Some tablet makers and OS developers are trying to convince people that their products are better than the iPad. The fact is, all they are doing is adding features to Apple’s concept. Anyone can copy a concept and then add small things to it, but Apple still owns the original and consumers identify with that. Nobody is being fooled.

Until one of these companies stands up and makes a break from an Apple inspired design, Apple will continue to own the tablet — and phone — market. I honestly don’t expect that any of these companies will do it because they don’t want to roam too far away from Apple. That’s where the money is.

For Apple’s competitors, selling 1 million units a quarter is a windfall in revenue and market share. If Apple only sold 1 million iPads in a quarter, it would be devastating, and would be felt in the markets.

Some writers in recent days have said that Apple is going to face stiff competition in the tablet market because new Android tablets will be faster. They predict Apple will respond with a new, faster iPad 3. That’s just stupid.

Apple is not going to respond to anything its competitors put out at this point because it doesn’t have to. Speed, like most other things introduced these days, is a feature, not a fundamental shift in the way we interact with the device.

Apple has spent 10 years working on the iPhone, iPad and the integration with iTunes for app, music and video downloads. The competition would have us believe that in a few short years they too have perfected all of this.


  • Steven Fisher

    “everything being released today looks and acts exactly like an iPad”

    Perhaps it would be better to say it aims to look and act exactly like an iPad. Because if they actually did a better job of copying, surely someone would be having some success.

    • Probably the better phrase is “everything being released today imitates the iPad’s behaviour”. Because, to this day, no one has been able to achieve the same level of touch response and UI fluidity as Apple, in either the phone or tablet space.

  • Mrot978

    well maybe you should try using the galaxy tab 10.1 and galaxy s 2 last time i checked my s2 blew my iphone4 out of the water

    • Chark

      What your S2 does to your iPhone 4 on their own time is thier business. No need to post details here…

    • Gustav

      Tried one, didn’t like it. Android doesn’t have the attention to detail in the UI that iOS does. Through more MHz at it won’t fix it. Everything from the look of the controls down to the animation time curves is important to getting a good look and feel. Honeycomb feels forced and linear, the iOS feels fluid and natural.

      • Anonymous

        But I have heard that Google has a new Moto in mind and it will be atomic powered. And can be used to levitate. Try to beat that, Steve!

    • The Galaxy S II was released almost a year after the iPhone 4, I would hope it blows it out of the water, performance-wise.

      • D S

        Have you tried an SII

        • I haven’t… but the Galaxy series is Samsung’s flagship. As I said, if it doesn’t outperform a rival’s flagship from a year prior, that’s not a good sign!

    • Mrot, could you pass along the contact info for the Samsung marketing group that’s paying you to write posts like this? I sure could use the extra cash.

    • Anonymous

      Reading is fundamental! If you read the article, it clearly says that these other products (like the one’s you just mentioned) are copies. CHEAP copies! You’re delusional if you’re comparing a cheaply made, plastic, buggy, app-less iPad clone to the real thing. The iPhone 4 is the best phone out. Numbers don’t lie. Looks like you’re easily satisfied with the lowest common denominator. Why risk getting malware/viruses & use a ugly UI + crappy UX, just to hate Apple?? It doesn’t add up.

    • Anonymous

      Reading is fundamental! If you read the article, it clearly says that these other products (like the one’s you just mentioned) are copies. CHEAP copies! You’re delusional if you’re comparing a cheaply made, plastic, buggy, app-less iPad clone to the real thing. The iPhone 4 is the best phone out. Numbers don’t lie. Looks like you’re easily satisfied with the lowest common denominator. Why risk getting malware/viruses & use a ugly UI + crappy UX, just to hate Apple?? It doesn’t add up.

    • Steven Fisher

      There’s a variety of nice ways I could put this, but I doubt any of them would get through to you.

      So, bluntly: Nobody here gives a shit about your Galaxy S 2.

    • His Shadow

      Ah, the obligatory comment from the mythical “Gadget Guy” who has one of everything at all times and is ever quick to relay his experience from his daytime job of owning every piece of tech ever invented.

      Give it a rest.

      • Anonymous

        Those “mythical gadget guys” really do exist. I’m a computer repair and technology consultant during the day (and painfully, most nights), so my job literally requires that I become familiar with, and own in most cases, virtually every variation from every brand of every product category. After more real-life, hands-on experience with all of these products I can say without any shadow of a doubt that Apple’s stuff really is “better”. 6-7 years ago you could make a pretty convincing argument that it had the upper hand, but in 2011 it’s become indisputable fact. 

        It’s funny because technically speaking, I should be thanking Google and Microsoft. I make 2x more when my clients need devices based on their software setup, because it takes 2x longer than doing the same with their Apple counterparts. If I included the countless visits to remove malware and viruses in the months following, I easily make 10x more from businesses and other clients with Windows based systems vs those running OS X. Keeping that in mind, forget everything I said before. EVERYONE BUY PC’S AND ANDROID BASED DEVICES! APPLE SUCKS! You’ll be helping immensely to make sure I can afford that dream Ferrari before I’m 30.. 

        • His Shadow

          “Those “mythical gadget guys” really do exist.”

          Well, to be fair, supporting technology exposes one to a plethora of devices and systems and in that role, your experience would allow you to comment intelligently on the strengths and weaknesses of various platforms. In that context, you yourself do not necessarily possess a copy of every smartphone released in the last two quarters, but may possible have experience with a large number of them.

          My comment was directed at the common comment enabled blog hanger-on who never hesitates  to claim that he is currently in possession of no fewer than three cell phones, all major gaming systems, two Macs and a Dell running Ubuntu, even when the spelling and grammar is indicative of a 15 year old drop out, not a repair or support tech.

    • Anonymous

      Mrit978, BJs are poor substitutes for the real thing. Get a life.

      And I mean this in the nicest way.

  • Anonymous

    This was supposed to be under @Gustav but I ended up moving when I logged in 🙂

    I concur.  I think a lot of people think their “Android Phone of The Week” is better then the iPhone because they read somewhere the specs are better.  I have long term practical experience with several current models of Android phone, and none of them has a real world performance edge over the iPhone 3GS.  

    Perhaps they should be faster, but in the real world they are not.

    • Anonymous

      Android is very slow compared to iOS, for about 10,000 reasons.

  • Anonymous

    @54cd74783ff88b90b23fda1d3c41bce5:disqus Agree with your comments. Most people seem to think that having more MP on their phone camera or a larger screen seems to make a phone better. My guess is that most manufacturers are hoping that the strategy employed with phones can be replicated in tablets.

    I see Microsoft as the closest to future ipad competitor.What with Googorola – Samsung and HTC might hedge their bets with MS and MS might be better able to leverage their Windows dominance.

    • Anonymous

      If pixels mattered Nokia would still be on top!

      • Anonymous

        If pixels mattered, Canon would be on top in smartphones.

        • Anonymous


  • Moreover, speed is a perception, not a spec. Put the snappy response of an iPad up against the sludgy experience of any of the ‘competitors’, even with ‘faster’ CPUs. Its like the criticisms of the MacBook Air because of its slower CPU, when anyone who uses one feels that their using the fastest computer they’ve ever touched… because of the flash based OS and storage.

  • Anonymous

    Up until the iPad came out, Tablet Computing was really Pentop Computing. 

    3 years ago, no one could even dream of using a tablet with only your fingers.  Now everyone thinks it is obvious.

    This is what Apple does.

    • The funny thing about this is that Microsoft was soooo close, they just had the dimensions wrong. Surface showed the kind of interactivity people wanted from a tablet computer, but it was the size of a coffee table.

      • Anonymous

        Surface was introduced well after iPhone and was not Microsoft’s first attempt at touch computing.

      • Surface uses a rear-projector behind a reflective surface and 5 cameras to compute touch, costing multiple thousands of dollars… it will take more than a decade to get it remotely close to the right dimensions. No, it was never soooooo close. It was a research project bought by Microsoft and rushed out to simulate they were remotely in the same neighborhood as Apple.

        • His Shadow


      • Seriously dude, Surface? It was based on video cameras and stuck-on barcode labels. The thing was little more than an overhead projector.

        Classic smoke and mirrors from Microsoft to deflect attention from the iPhone. Worked beautifully. Obviously.

  • Randall Million

    I do not care that “Android tablets will be faster”. Specs are useless. Once you have an adequate level of processing, more doesn’t help.

    How will these new tablets change the way that I interact with the device and make my life easier/better?

    • Anonymous

      The Android tablets may be clocked at a faster speed than an iPad, but they will not be faster, because Android is so much slower than iOS. Android only started using the GPU in version 3. And Apple’s custom ARM SoC has by far the biggest GPU of any mobile chip. iPad is just way, way ahead in hardware and software than all these other tablets.

      • cortexa100

        Yh its a lot stressful only becuase of the compatibility issue get it write ask timm bray lol, anyway this is know not the case as oem are taking control of gui withing there phones and google are making custom api for oem making application specific for one device. how much do you really know about SoC because apple do not really make SoC its intresity u caint say that apple make better soc than samsung becuse their firs soc was th A4 which got beaten by samsung humming bird look below.they relied on samsung for there 3gs so really you dont know what your taking about. A lot of people are under educated thats where the problem lies. personal i dont give a crap about who really makes the device. but if you want expert advice about software are hardware. here it is; iphone 3gs 600mhz arm cortex a8 power vr sgx535 i got one because it was the best phone of the year. cpu made by samsung check it out. iphone 4 1ghz arm cortex a8 power vr sgx535 faster cpu based of ti 3630 but wat the hell same gpu galaxy s 1ghz arm cortex a8 power vr sgx540 umm..dats why igot this one galaxy s2 1.2ghz dual core arm cortex a9 mali 400mp give it this the best cpu that we will see this year but a mali 400mp is crappppppppppp. wat ghe fuck was samsung thinking driver support and dev support is rubbish iphone assuming it has same specs as ghe ipad2 just like the iphone 4 had thr same specs as the ipad. which is a shit a9 dualcore soc wigh the worlds most awsome gpu a dual core sgx543 dats far better than anythung ive seen troughout my years of being a sad reasearcher (except for psp vita which has a a 4 cire sgx543) thats why this year i am not going to stick with the galaxy s nice sgx540 and get myself a 5th gen ipod touch assuming one comes out. and dats for gaming. can not wait for next year when someone makesva phone with psp vita hardware then i will pre order :O

    • Divebus

      It’s interesting how everyone’s future unshipped products trounce Apple’s year old actual products.

  • Anonymous

    I love the ad in this article that tells me I can get a new iPad for only $23.74. I don’t have much confidence in the opinion of someone who would place such a blatant scam next to their story.

    • Anonymous

      Newsflash: writers do not place the ads next to their stories.

  • Anonymous

    It is becoming the same way with the PC also. The MacBook is now the archetype of the Intel notebook PC, and everything else is a MacBook clone, thicker and made out of plastic and running Starter Edition of a Wal-Mart OS.

  • Anonymous

    This is simple math! These companies are either delusional or really bad managers of their finances. The more they compete with Apple the more capital they’ll waste while they sell absolutely NO volume. They won’t earn any money towards manufacturing or R&D & will end-up cutting prices (loss) & spending their “tiny” profits on 2nd & 3rd generation devices (repeating the same thing over & over again). I agree, copying Apple right now makes NO sense. But, in reality, that is the “competitions” only option. Taking the time to R&D a completely new type of tablet will render a company obsolete by the time it’s ready for market. NO investor has that type of patience in 2011 & beyond. Especially when Apple is taking away so much of the money at the moment & seems like they won’t slow down anytime soon. These companies will keep making the same mistakes until they get takin’ over or whittle away until there’s nothing left but patents & IP. The so-called “competition” in the end will be responsible for Apple’s dominance in tech. After iOS 5 & iCloud change everything again, companies should be very worried about Apple’s future product releases & their ability to create categories. I’m hoping for MacBook Pro’s without the optical-drive next. Palm, Motorola, Nokia, RIM, Dell, LG, Borders, Nintendo, Sony, HP, Samsung, Google: Either out of business or losing money because of Apple/iPhone/iPod Touch/iPad/Macs. No one is buying TV’s as much, because they have a better screen on their iPhone/iPod Touch, iPad or Mac. No one’s buying computers as much because the iPad does all basic functions (e-mail, web-browsing, photos & social-networking) really well for a reasonable starting price (with NO prior computer knowledge). No one is buying magazines, comics or newspapers as much as they used to, e-books get a lot of credit for that, but iBooks in the iTunes & App Stores has added another dimension to digital books & how they’re stored. iOS isn’t perfect, but I’ll take it over the rest anytime! Plus, based on what’s already available, the future is looking even better. I can’t wait ’til these imitators DIE OFF!

  • Anonymous

    Tech blogs reviewing a new gadget will go down the easy route and compare using features. Rather than using a gadget for a week and then reviewing it – a review will be out 5 days before it hits to garner the most clicks/likes/tweets.

    People reading these blogs suddenly start doing the same – 5MP or 8MP .Dual core or quad core? 

    This finally leads to manufacturers building phones that compete purely by features. Apple wins because they release 1 phone a year – everything works as a complete package and they are not afraid to not include the latest buzz phrase till they get it right

  • Anonymous

    If apple were so convinced of this, they wouldn’t have tried to enforce a European design patent with doctored evidence.

  • You could have written this article in 1985, substituting “PC” for tablet and “Macintosh” for “iPad”.

    I’m a big a fan as any of the iPad, but let’s not get ahead of ourselves.

  • I wonder how the Motorola purchase will change the way HTC, LG, SONY, Samsung and others behave. Will they revive a common platform as before? In theory they can take over the “open” Android platform, loosing the right to call it Android. It would still be popular just because they would all be spending Marketing $ on it. They could even integrate a shared Ad system to help pay for the R&D.

  • The thing is Google was forced to buy Moto Mobile because they lost the first (or maybe 2nd) round in the patent wars …. to Microsoft, Apple, etc…  yeah Microsoft & Apple are in bed togther – on this.  Not since MS & Apple got together to create True Type fonts (to avoid heavy royalties on Adobe Postscript fonts) has this happened (well there is probably some exaggeration here).

    For some time, Microsoft has made more money on Android OS than they have on their WinMobile (or whatever they are calling it these days) OS.  This may well have been before Apple, MS, et al, bought the old Nortel patents.

    So Google now has an arsenal of patents, but they are already behind the 8 ball, because of the Nortel deal and well apparently there are internal Google emails were they wonder about “stealing IP” or some such (though I do think most of these patents are worthless – lawyers and court is not cheap).

    The other part of this irony is they now have a real hardware company to integrate and it already appears the Google geniuses are thumbing their noses at “dumb hardware engineers” … 

    However the real hardware company may give Google a clue as to how to improve their ‘open OS’ … so it can actually compete vs. the iOS devices head to head.

    I will give Android few props however… I do like some of the matte display screens, they are pretty cool.  Apple is almost all glossy screen – and the sad thing is they used to know how to make a real display (ie:  flat/thin/matte display).

  • Ddd

    Apparently you haven’t seen what FusionGarage came up with.

  • death by china

    Yes apple is loosing market share so this is how they respone sue them all so your family only have apple products at rip off prices. I would buy apple products only when they assembled in USA. Anyone who buy an apple products will donate money to China and making United State poorer, check out the book call DEATH BY CHINA.

  • Anonymous

    Why do people insist on calling these things tablets! A tablet is something you write on using an implement; a chisel, a sharpened rock blade, a stylus and maybe burnt sticks. Tablets were first made of wood or clay. Animal skins were also written upon but they weren’t called tablets for obvious reasons. Scrolls could be made of skin or paper from reeds or wood chips. They weren’t called tablets yet as they are more akin to pads like the iPad in that your work can continue below the visible as it is unscrolled. Parchment might even be a better word. 

    The car and truck were originally called horseless carriages which is akin to calling a pad or iPad a tablet. The original computing tablet weighted in at pounds, it was written upon by a stylus, it was four inches thick, looked like a brick or tablet of ancient times and was appropriately named and could be used like a hammer in difficult instances.

    Today the pad, or at least the iPad is measured in millimetres, is weighted by grammes and can be spoken to, waved at, and touched with fingers. It doesn’t just respond to little hammers or sharpened sticks.

    A pad is a computer but t is not a laptop, a desktop, a mainframe, or a tablet. I had a Palm TX tablet. I know the difference.

    However, the Android debacles do respond more like tablets so maybe the name is apt and they are just pads, yet.

  • Anonymous

    Jim, You Are the Man!

    And I quote: “Apple is not going to respond to anything its competitors put out at this point because it doesn’t have to. Speed, like most other things introduced these days, is a feature, not a fundamental shift in the way we interact with the device.

    Apple has spent 10 years working on the iPhone, iPad and the integration with iTunes for app, musicand video downloads. The competition would have us believe that in a few short years they too have perfected all of this.”

    These are wo important points (speed as a feature and 10 years of development) I have been saying over and over on TMO yet I cannot  recollect seeing in print, together, by any other pro, anywhere. I’m sure you noticed this very early in the iPads life. Kudos.

  • when apple makes an iphone with a keyboard, ill think about it.

  • cortexa100

    Wow stop this voilence lol i personaly hate the galaxy s2 becuase of the gpu mali400mp ghat iphone 5 will surpass but the galaxy s far better than the iphone 4 ….dont kill me specs from arm client iphone 3gs 600mhz a8 power vr sgx535(bear in mind this was made by samsung) iphone 4 1ghz cortex a8 power vr sgx535 galaxy s 1ghz cortex a8 power vr sgx540

    i dont care who its made by as long as it does the job better big fan of ipod touch 4th gen and upcomming 5th gen;-)

  • I’m going to reveal Appl’s secret. Make the most of what you have. While other manufactures may use the same or even better components, advertising their mega specs Apple takes the same component or even a less spec’d component and engineers exceptional preformance.

    Listen to an old Beatles record. They were Engineered so well Beatles music stands up well today. The Beatles weren’t the only band to wrirpte about peace, love & understanding. They just did it really well. That’s Apple’s secret. It’s not the technology, it’s the Apple people behind the technology. Vision, Implimentation