10 Features an Apple Tablet Must Have to Succeed

News Analysis: A report has surfaced claiming Apple has ordered 10-inch displays that will likely be used in the company's rumored Apple Tablet. It makes sense. Apple has no reason to acquire 10-inch displays unless for use in the upcoming mobile device. Apple is up to something. And it's becoming increasingly likely that that something is the Apple Tablet.

A report has surfaced claiming Apple has ordered 10-inch displays that will likely be used in the company's rumored tablet PC. Assuming Apple does finally release the Apple Tablet, it will need some features to help it achieve the kind of success the company has enjoyed with its iPhone. The Apple Tablet can't simply stand on the fact that Apple is offering it. That's not enough to justify consumers or businesses spending hundreds of dollars just to have it.

The device will need strong integration with the products in Apple's App Store. It will require a usable keyboard. It needs to have the features that users really want in order for Apple to create a real value proposition for customers.

So let's take a look at some of the features the Apple Tablet should have when it makes its rumored debut on store shelves sometime in 2010.

1. A useful keyboard

Since the Apple Tablet will feature a touch screen, the device's keyboard will become an extremely important feature. If users have a hard time typing URLs or information into any office-productivity software that will be installed, it could significantly limit the device's appeal. Overall, the iPhone's virtual keyboard isn't too bad. Apple should mimic its functionality. But whether or not a larger device with more screen real estate can recreate that experience is a big question mark.

2. App Store integration

The Apple Tablet won't have nearly enough appeal unless it plays nice with Apple's App Store. Admittedly, that's a hard sell. Right now, applications in the Store are designed with the smaller displays of the iPhone and iPod Touch in mind. Developers would need to modify their applications so that they work with the Apple Tablet. That said, there are over 100,000 applications in Apple's App Store. The hardware company needs to exploit them as quickly and efficiently as possible.

3. A responsive display

In order for the Apple Tablet to be a success, its touch screen must be responsive to any and all gestures the user makes on the display. The iPhone wouldn't be the iPhone if it didn't have such a responsive (and accurate) display. The Apple Tablet will be just another useless tablet computer if it doesn't have that same precise functionality. By the time it hits store shelves, the Apple Tablet must provide an iPhone-like experience.

4. True Apple design

Identifying Apple's devices isn't so difficult. Typically, they are the best-designed products on the store shelves. They have all the features that users really want. And they feature a "sexiness" that most products just don't have. For the Apple Tablet to be successful, it must have all those elements. Customers expect a certain design aesthetic from Apple. The company needs to deliver.

5. Uniqueness

Tablet PCs are nothing new. In fact, they've been around for years. Realizing that, Apple needs to find a way to make its tablet unique. Providing multitouch gestures on a lush display is a good first step, but it might not be enough. The device needs to do something special that customers haven't seen yet.

Don Reisinger

Don Reisinger

Don Reisinger is a longtime freelance contributor to several technology and business publications. Over his career, Don has written about everything from geek-friendly gadgetry to issues of privacy...