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5 Reasons Tech Companies Should Stop Trying To Top Apple’s iPad

Submitted by on January 10, 2011 – 1:00 pm10 Comments

Las Vegas transformed itself from Sin City into Nerd Heaven last week when the Consumer Electronics Show touched down to showcase the latest tech products that will be dropping over the course of the next year. From Sony and Samsung to Monster and Skullcandy, all of the big tech companies were in attendance to get the thousands of tech geeks that attended CES into a frenzy about the latest gadgets. Well, almost all of the big companies.

As is their custom, Apple, Inc. did not attend CES and did not drop any new information about the products they’ve got in the chamber (though, for the record, some unauthorized news about Verizon’s new iPhone4 did drop—and we’re excited!). However, just because the Apple brand wasn’t in attendance doesn’t mean Apple wasn’t on the minds of all those who took the trek to CES. Because once again this year, tablet computers—Apple iPad competitors, if you will—took precedence with a handful of companies, including everyone from Motorola to Vizio, unveiling new tablets at the event.

But, is that really a wise decision? After seeing Apple’s iPod crush its’ MP3 player competition for the last decade, should tech companies really be focused on trying to put out tablets that’ll have to best the iPad in order to pay off in the long run? Or, should they stick to trying to best Apple in other departments? We happen to think they should just let Apple run the tablet marketplace and stick to doing what they do best in other areas. Here are five reasons why:

1. The iPad is already considered the standard for tablets.

The iPad came first. Sure, there were other tablet computers before it, but the iPad is the one that made people sit up and take notice. By using the success of the iPod, the iPod Touch and the iPhone, Apple was able to schlep iPads for $500 to consumers—despite the fact that, initially, no one knew exactly what they were to be used for. Being a pioneer certainly has its advantages.

2. The iPad does everything you need a tablet to do.

Music? Movies? Apps? Checking your Facebook and Twitter pages religiously? Whatever you decided to use your iPad for initially, there’s a good chance you found something that made you love it. Now, you can’t live without it. That’s really how Apple won the war before it ever really started. They gave you a device that you enjoyed using and did it before anyone else could come along and do it for you.

3. The iPad is priced to move.

Starting at 500 bucks, the iPad ain’t cheap—but it also isn’t gonna break the bank, especially when you consider that many people are buying them in place of a new laptop or netbook. Some of the newer tablets may try to launch with lower prices. But if they can’t do everything the iPad can, isn’t the extra investment worth it?

4. The iPad isn’t tied exclusively to AT&T anymore.

For years now, the argument against the iPhone has been that it’s only available on the AT&T network. The same went for the iPad when it first launched. People didn’t want to pay 30 bucks a month for 3G service on AT&T. However, now that Verizon has started selling the iPad and offering 3G service, you’ve got the option of obtaining service from a different company if you want.

5. The soon-to-be-released iPad 2 is going to build upon the shortcomings of the original iPad.

The time to beat the iPad was last year. Shortly after it was released, people complained that it didn’t come with a camera, couldn’t handle Adobe and, in general, was missing some of the key features that they’d expected. By providing a tablet that included some of these features—even just a camera would have done—a tech company out there could have had a chance of cornering a small corner of the tablet market. None emerged, though, and a year later, Apple is reportedly working on the iPad 2, which will include a lot of the things that were missing the first time around. Sounds like it’s time for some of these tech companies to do the same and go back to the drawing board.

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