1The Acer Iconia Tablet
Its hard to find too many worthwhile features in the Acer Iconia Tablet that cant be found in other devices. The slate comes with a 2-megapixel camera, a dual-core Tegra 2 processor, and a 10.1-inch display. However, its running Android Honeycomb 3.0—an issue for those looking for the more-reliable Android 3.1. Combine that with the fact few people even know about the device, and it might not be long before the $400 tablet fades from the market.
2Dell Streak 7
When Dell first got into the tablet market, the company tried its luck with a 5-inch tablet, called the Streak. After that device failed, Dell offered a 7-inch version, called the Streak 7. So far, the tablet hasnt caught on with consumers, and enterprise users have all but ignored it because of its Android integration. Plus, its screen is still too small, which doesnt help matters. Simply put, the Streak 7 falls short.
3RIM BlackBerry PlayBook
The Research In Motion BlackBerry PlayBook was supposed to be the option for enterprise users. The device, which comes with a 7-inch display and runs RIMs new tablet operating system, delivers much of the functionality corporate users are after, including support for BlackBerry Enterprise Server, but so far, it hasnt been widely adopted in the business world. Perhaps thats because of the tablets seemingly consumer-minded features. Either way, it might be time for RIM to head back to the drawing board.
The Cisco Cius has yet to be released, but already the device doesnt look like an ideal option for its target market. The Cius is designed for enterprise users. However, the device will come with Android and sport a small, 7-inch display. Considering the security issues Android is confronting right now, it might not take long before IT decision makers turn their backs on the Cius.
5Coby Kyros Tablet
The Coby Kyros tablets biggest issue is that no one even knows about it. The tablet comes with a 7-inch screen and runs Android 2.2 Whats more, it has 512MB of on-board memory. Those looking for a larger display can get the 8-inch option, which comes with 4GB of memory. But all that means nothing when the average consumer has never even heard of the product. Its $159.99 price tag is attractive, but its obscurity thats killing Cobys tablet.
When the Motorola Xoom launched earlier this year, the tablet was supposed to prove that Android slates could hold their own against the iPad 2. But then customers actually tried out the device, which comes with a 10.1-inch screen, and found that it falls short in many ways. The biggest issue with the tablet was its Android 3.0 Honeycomb installation, which some critics said, was quite buggy. Now, months after its launch, the Xoom is languishing on store shelves. It might be time to retire it.
7Asus Eee Pad Transformer Tablet
The Asus Eee Pad Transformer is arguably one of the most interesting devices in this roundup. The device comes with a big, 10.1-inch display, Android 3.2, and a whopping 16 hours of battery life. The device can even be docked into a physical keyboard, turning it into a netbook. However, few people in the marketplace know about it, as the iPad continues to cast its huge shadow on the market. If a better-known company offered up the Transformer, the device might have sold better. But Asus is behind it, and the mainstream consumer just doesnt know enough about the company. Thats too bad.
8HTC Flyer Tablet
The HTC Flyer tablet is unique in this roundup for one key reason: it supports a digital pen. Users can write on the graphics, take notes and much more. However, theres no indication that todays consumer or even enterprise user is even looking for such functionality. When judging a device, the leaders in the space must be considered. Apples iPad 2 and the Galaxy Tab 10.1 dont offer digital pens, and theyre selling exceedingly well. That should tell HTC that perhaps its digital pen idea wasnt the best idea. Or perhaps it needs more time and better marketing to get the idea across?
9Lenovo IdeaPad Netbook Tablet
The Lenovo IdeaPad netbook is arguably the least tablet-like of any of the devices in this roundup. It comes with a physical keyboard and it seems to perform best as a netbook rather than as a tablet. However, its display can double as a tablet, and users can opt to work with it in that way. However, like the Flyer tablets pen, Lenovos decision to basically combine a tablet and netbook in one is not well-thought-out. Consumers arent looking for two-in-one devices; they want a single product that does something really well. They can find that in a tablet and a netbook. But who knows if theyll find that in a netbook tablet? If Lenovo is serious about getting into the tablet business, ditching this device might be a good idea.
107-Inch Samsung Galaxy Tab
When Samsung launched its 7-inch Galaxy Tab, the device sold fairly well. However, once Samsung offered up its 10.1-inch model, the smaller device became redundant. In todays mobile marketplace, consumers and enterprise users are looking for devices with large screens. With the Samsung Galaxy 10.1, the company is trumping the iPad 2. But the 7-inch option doesnt provide any advantage over the iPad. It seems like an extraneous device right now. And it should go.