Who Needs a Tablet and What Does it Need?

Following the success of the Apple iPad, numerous companies are planning on releasing their own tablets. Listen to the rumors and Research In Motion (RIM) is secretly working on its own ‘BlackPad’ tablet. What I want to know is what you, the readers want inside of a tablet. Below are what I think is essential for a tablet to have so let me know if I am on the mark, if I missed something, or if I simply want too much (I’m greedy, I know).

What I think every new tablet needs

  • 1 GHz range processor
  • 1 GB of RAM
  • 16 GB of internal storage and microSD support
  • USB and FireWire
  • Bluetooth 2.1
  • Wi-Fi b/g/n
  • Front facing camera for video conferencing
  • Rear facing camera that takes 5 MP photos and does 720p HD video recording
  • Optional stylus support for actually drawing stuff on it
  • A UNIX based operating system underneath it but the simplicity of a smartphone OS
  • Apps that can work like Microsoft Office (sorry OpenOffice, you really stink)
  • Optional cellular radio with 4G abilities (make it a USB dongle?)

That is pretty much my dream tablet. I don’t want it to be a laptop/tablet crossover. I want it to be like an iPad but better. I think a 1 GHz processor with 1 GB of RAM is not too much to expect because I would use it on a daily basis and the technology is already available. Thanks to Google Voice and Gmail, it does not need a normal cellular plan to go packaged with its option 4G USB dongle. Why are companies like Apple and possibly RIM making you decide if you want cellular radio or not? Make it optional and more will buy it.

Some might wonder why I would want FireWire support in it. What if I want it to interface with a real video camera or professional audio recording equipment? Why lug around something else too? Why should I have to choose only a Bluetooth keyboard? What if I want to use a regular USB one I have lying around? This is stuff that saves consumers money and the manufacturers too.

Furthermore, I want some real office software. If I am going to be expected to pay in the range of $500-$900 for something that does all of this, I want some real applications. Not apps, applications. People have no problem spending hundreds on software for their PCs so if you can deliver a comparable experience on a tablet, I think they will be willing to spend some real money for real applications.

Would a tablet like this fulfill all of your needs? Am I asking for too much? Let me know in the comments section what you think of my dream configuration and if the BlackPad, the next iPad, or any of the coming tablets are going to be able to deliver any of this. And what I really want to ask is this: what do you want and need in a tablet? How would you use it for work or leisure?

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