Do we really need a tablet?

tabletsIf you are even a little techie, the word you will most frequently hear nowadays is “tablet”.

Steve Jobs, the CEO of Apple Inc. is perhaps the only person who has the credit of changing the world trends multiple times.

First he did it with the introduction of Apple range of computers. He did it again by unveiling the iMac. Third time it was by introducing the iPhone and finally it is by the launch of iPad.

He sets the trends and others follow. This is what has happened in tablets as well. He launched iPad and since then, market has been invaded by tons of tablets.

But the question is, do we really need a tablet? Well, I spent quite a bit of time on finding it out and here is what I feel.

Tablet is indeed an amazing thing but it neither is a laptop nor a smart phone.

The things an ordinary user uses a laptop for are mainly web browsing, checking emails, word processing, making spreadsheets and designing presentations.

Why we use mobile phones is to make phone calls.

With tablets, we do all the stuff mentioned above but to be honest, it is not that easy.

Let me discuss in detail different scenarios as below.

Making office documents and spreadsheets on a tablet is possible, but the ability to format them is quite limited. Copy/paste is quite a hassle. Making a flat document is easy but I tried to make a few office documents with more advanced features and when it comes to formatting and adding tables, I missed my laptop a lot. So my vote here in this case is for a laptop and not for a tablet.

Using a tablet, you surely can browse the web, though you sometimes have to compromise with the small display by zooming in the screen. This zooming in brings a horizontal scroll on the screen which I hate to see, but even then, in this case, I have no issue using a tablet.

If you are good at virtual keyboards, you can manage to type emails and I think a virtual keyboard on this size of screen is quite acceptable. I have no issue using a tablet in this case as well but would prefer using my BlackBerry with a qwerty keyboard.

Games, this is another thing tablets are good at offering and I am quite OK with playing games on this device.

Now most of the tablets have mobile phone built in them but I do not think anyone of us will be comfortable carrying a 10″ or a 7″ mobile phone. Hence, we have to carry a phone separately in addition to a tablet, so I give a negative mark to tablet when it has to be used as a phone.

Below is a chart showing the ability of each device.


Below are my recommendations.


Summing it all, these are not ultimate words. Requirements and convenience levels differ from person to person. According to my requirement, I do not need a tablet but according to your requirement, you may need one.

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9 Responses to Do we really need a tablet?

  1. Aamir Barry says:

    When you are sitting in a coffee shop and a petty girl comes to youand ask you to give your tablet to have a look, guess that is where you are paid off :-P

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  4. saas says:

    I completely agree with your assessment. Ive bought one recently and spent almost a week using it. My experience so far – It is only useful for casual browsing. Rest not much. Even in gaming department – it is good for small time killer games.

    I am not sure why people are falling for the hype including myself. People need to ask a question – If I have a laptop and a desktop home computer and a smart phone – will I buy a netbook? Because tablet was suppose to be replacement of netbook.

    Finally – it is just an extra gadget doing same things as my computer would do with much more limited capabilities. Or you can put is this way – this is just an extra gadget doing same things as my smart phone would do with a little big screen and little more capabilities.

    • Tahir says:

      Nice to read so detailed comments from you. I think the best use of a tablet is when it is used for custom applications like order taking in restaurants, data collection, on production floor, airlines and many other places but at least not for general purpose like browsing and checking emails.

  5. Azhar says:

    Hello there, nice article here :)

    I’ve been looking around for this kind of discussion, is it really necessary to have a tablet PC while we already have the smartphones for phone / sms / GPS and laptops for work, gaming and internet.

    For me, the answer is *no*. Don’t think will buy one although I always like to check out the reviews of the tablets on youtube. For a person like me, I really think that if I got one, I’ll only use it for about 3-4 months and then will get bored. That’s what actually happen with my previous smartphones and the current one I had. I’ll always come back to my laptop for internet and gaming.

    But if someone is giving it away for free, I’ll definitely want one! :)

  6. ROCKY RAMAN says:

    We buy gadgets like the tablet because
    a) we are gadget freaks. We just itch to touch it,try it and own it.
    b) shopping is fun and feels good especially when there’s this shiny, nifty gadget involved.
    c) we follow crowds and buy into hype. Advertisements really work.
    d) we can. Money being no object and we are done donating to the millions of causes.

  7. ASANTOS says:

    I am glad I read the above comments before running to buy a tablet. At least for now, a good notebook and a mobile phone would do just fine.

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