In recent years the popularity of tablets has risen, as many casual users seek easy and fuss-free ways of staying connected on the move. The iPad arguably began the whole movement, and while many at the time questioned what the point was of a large smartphone without phone capability, it’s undeniable that the technology has had a huge impact on the marketplace. However, there are compromises to be made, and there are a number of common pros and cons cited when discussing the difference between tablets and their more complex portable counterparts.
Laptops have the instant advantage of being much easier to use – the keyboard makes typing a breeze, while USB and various ports allow the user to hook it up to hardware to make it even easier to work. This turns a laptop into a fully-fledged desktop PC in just a few short moves. The processing power and storage is another bonus – it’s safe to say that at the moment a tablet is unlikely to recreate the capability of even a mid-range laptop.
Tablets are definitely a more instant way to keep in touch, as long as you’re hooked up to the Wi-Fi. They’re easy to carry around and can be pulled out as easily as a smartphone, without the boot-up time or the table space required for a laptop. However, this massive convenience is offset by a lack of flexibility – you won’t run games on a tablet and it’s unlikely you’ll have a very productive meeting if a tablet is all you have with you.
While many people tend to choose one or the other, the past twelve months have heralded a spot-on compromise in the form of the hybrid laptop. Pioneered by Microsoft’s new Windows 8 operating system, which features a brand new touch-friendly interface, users of hybrid laptops can now get the best of both worlds with laptops that slide gracefully into tablet form by tucking the keyboard out of the way and switching to touchscreen control.
For an example of these impressive hybrids take a look at Misco’s range of laptops. You might be surprised to note that the new hybrids are a little higher in price than most laptops, and this is indicative of the build quality – as well as the processing power of a laptop you’ve got the built-in touchscreen (which, on most laptops, will still work while unfolded, meaning double the flexibility while you’re on the move), the folding mechanism itself and the ability to completely customise your tech experience depending on where you are and what you need to do.
Hybrid laptops are still relatively new but they’re making waves already, and slowly more and more manufacturers will start making their own competition. Keep an eye on the market now and you’ll see prices start to slip within the next six months – perfect for getting your hands on one of these impressive new devices.