Tablet PCs to become popular at last?

— 1:08 PM on May 21, 2007

Despite a lackluster introduction, Tablet PCs may finally be on their road to fame, according to Ars Technica. The telltale sign may be Dell's decision to finally sell a tablet PC—nearly five years after Microsoft's introduction of Windows XP Tablet PC Edition. Indeed, as Dell revealed on its Direct2Dell blog last Friday, a Latitude Tablet PC is coming this year. Jeff Clark, Senior VP and general manager of Dell's Business Product Group, says in the announcement, "The technology, and customer, and usage models have evolved to the point that it makes it right for Dell to enter the marketplace."

According to Ars, Dell's sudden choice to jump in the Tablet PC market is simply due to the natural evolution of the platform. The site says Windows XP Tablet PC Edition-based systems felt like a "hack" a few years ago, but that the latest Vista-powered machines with Office 2007 show clear signs of maturity and make Tablet PCs a much more compelling choice. Nonetheless, Ars adds that Dell has work to do on the pricing front; Tablet PCs currently on the market are still fairly expensive compared to regular laptops with comparable specifications.

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