Whether the tablet will replace or just supplement PCs is a question that’s continuously being asked. Each have their place and each person needs to decide for his or herself whether a PC is overkill or a tablet is too minimal.
My sister just bought her first house. She contacted me with a list of big purchases she needed for the new house. On her list she had a fridge, washer, dryer, couch and…an iPad. That’s right, my sister sees an iPad as an essential for a new home. She doesn’t own a PC. She uses an iPad for e-mail, Facebook, YouTube and various other apps and games.
This iPad is filling a niche where a PC would be overkill for my sister to use. Knowing my sister, her hobbies and her profession (she’s a nurse), I cannot think of a single advantage that a PC would have over an iPad.
The iPad is also the better pick for her two year old daughter. I’ve seen this kid first-hand: swipe to unlock, swipe to the YouTube icon, to her favorite video and then tap the play icon, repeatedly. At two years old, this task wouldn’t be so easy on a PC. She completely relies on visual cues to find what she wants. This is allowing kids today to utilize technology at an even younger age than was possible with just the PC.
While the tablet has replaced PCs for my sister, for me it’s just a supplement. As a developer and all-around computer junkie, I’d have a hard time living without a PC. However, there are what I call circumstantial niches. When I traveled for a whole month in Europe, only having an iPod Touch fit the bill. I had access to internet, a map and travel apps and could fit it in my purse. On late work nights, I’ll leave my computer at work when I’m done and get by just fine with just an iPad at home. It’s impressive how I can do nearly everything I do on my computer on my iPad. But when I code, I require my computer.
The post-PC era is giving us many options so that each person can find the right device necessary for their lifestyle. Fortunately, buying a PC is not the only option for those that want the internet, want a few apps and want them on something larger than their smart phone.