Categorized | Featured, Tablet News

Nvidia, the trouble with Tablets

In 2010, processor firm Nvidia couldn't get enough of tablets. "Without question, 2010 is going to be the year of the tablet," creative strategies president Tim Bajarin said. Fast-forward a year, though, and the firm is more pessimistic. Tablets are rubbish!

Those aren't Nvidia's exact words - they'd be crazy to say that when so many devices use the firm's Tegra processors - but CEO Jen-Hsun Huang reckons there are definitely some big problems to address if tablets are to sell as many units as they should. Speaking to CNet he said "tablets should have a Wi-Fi configuration and be more affordable" - a remark interpreted as a dig at Motorola, whose 3G-enabled Xoom isn't exactly the cheapest tablet around. Huang also argued that Android tablets have suffered from a lack of apps and poor marketing.

So is Huang right? Should firms cut back on the tech to keep the price down? We think the answer is yes. For most of us, 3G is an unnecessary expense - especially if you've got an Android phone or iPhone 4, all of which can create Wi-Fi hotspots (for a fee) when you're nowhere near Wi-Fi. You'd need to do a lot of mobile browsing to justify the extra hundred-odd quid the 3G models usually cost.

We'd cut some other things too. Cameras are pointless on kit that's the size of a large book, and in many cases paying more for extra storage is unnecessary too. Do you really need to install your entire music and movie library on a tablet? The exception is for long trips with little people, as it doesn't take many Disney movies to fill 16GB.

The most pointless gimmick of all, though, is 3D. LG says its hugely expensive Optimus tablet is 3D-enabled, but it doesn't actually display 3D: for that, you need to connect it to a 3D TV. Given the huge price tag of the Optimus, we suspect it would have been a better idea to stick to two dimensions and cut the price instead.

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