Tablet computer

Apple's iPad (left) and Amazon's Fire, two popular tablet computers

A tablet computer, commonly shortened to tablet, is a mobile device, typically with a mobile operating system and touchscreen display processing circuitry, and a rechargeable battery in a single, thin and flat package. Tablets, being computers, do what other personal computers do, but lack some input/output (I/O) abilities that others have. Modern tablets largely resemble modern smartphones, the only differences being that tablets are relatively larger than smartphones, with screens 7 inches (18 cm) or larger, measured diagonally,[1][2][3][4] and may not support access to a cellular network.

The touchscreen display is operated by gestures executed by finger or digital pen (stylus), instead of the mouse, touchpad, and keyboard of larger computers. Portable computers can be classified according to the presence and appearance of physical keyboards. Two species of tablet, the slate and booklet, do not have physical keyboards and usually accept text and other input by use of a virtual keyboard shown on their touchscreen displays. To compensate for their lack of a physical keyboard, most tablets can connect to independent physical keyboards by Bluetooth or USB; 2-in-1 PCs have keyboards, distinct from tablets.

The form of the tablet was conceptualized in the middle of the 20th century (Stanley Kubrick depicted fictional tablets in the 1968 science fiction film A Space Odyssey) and prototyped and developed in the last two decades of that century. In 2010, Apple released the iPad, the first mass-market tablet to achieve widespread popularity.[5] Thereafter, tablets rapidly rose in ubiquity and soon became a large product category used for personal, educational and workplace applications,[6] with sales stabilizing in the mid-2010s.[7][8][9] Popular uses for a tablet PC include viewing presentations, video-conferencing, reading e-books, watching movies, sharing photos and more.[10]

The market for tablets is split pretty evenly between Apple's iPad and Android tablets, with iPads a bit more popular globally, still virtually all countries use Android tablets more.[11] Some countries favor one or the other to a large degree, while often the split is mostly even.

  1. ^ Editors PC Magazine. "Definition of: tablet computer". PC Magazine. Archived from the original on July 16, 2010. Retrieved April 17, 2010. {{cite news}}: |author= has generic name (help)
  2. ^ Editors, "tablet computer – 1 dictionary result",, archived from the original on November 8, 2011, retrieved April 17, 2010 {{citation}}: |author= has generic name (help)
  3. ^ Erica Ogg (May 28, 2010). "What makes a tablet a tablet? (FAQ)".
  4. ^ "Ulefone U7 7" LTPS MTK6592 Octa-Core review". June 28, 2014. Archived from the original on October 9, 2014. Every device with diagonal equal 7" or longer is practically tablet PC
  5. ^ "iPad Available in US on April 3" (Press release). Apple. March 5, 2010. Archived from the original on July 10, 2011. Retrieved March 5, 2010.
  6. ^ Chester, Brandon (March 12, 2015). "The Dell Venue 8 7000 Series Review". Anandtech. Archived from the original on March 24, 2015. Retrieved March 23, 2015.
  7. ^ "Tablets Are Dying. Do You Still Need One?". February 2017.
  8. ^ "The tablet is dead, says analyst". August 4, 2017.
  9. ^ "Where have all the tablets gone?". April 10, 2016.
  10. ^ "What is a Tablet PC?". Lenovo.
  11. ^ Cite error: The named reference map was invoked but never defined (see the help page).

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