iPad rivals still can't find a tablet market

iPad rivals still can't find a tablet market

Apple has proven time and time again that they're driven to innovate regardless, that they can successfully compete against themselves, but nothing drives them to innovate and compete faster and in a more focused fashion than a successful rival. Sadly, when it comes to iPad, rivals are proving anything but successful at the point.

Meanwhile the Galaxy Tab 10.1 from Samsung can now once again be stocked in the EU, but the Motorola Xoom LTE update has been once again delayed, this time until fall, and we've yet to get sell through numbers in any meaningful volume for any of the them.

Part of this is certainly the unbaked nature of virtually all iPad competitors to date, so perhaps the race should now switch from who can ship a rival tablet first, to who can make a much better, much more compelling tablet at a much better value first?

Bad news for everyone if the answer to that continues to be "nobody".

Rene Ritchie

Editor-in-Chief of iMore, co-host of Iterate, Debug, Review, The TV Show, Vector, ZEN & TECH, and MacBreak Weekly podcasts. Cook, grappler, photon wrangler. Follow him on Twitter and Google+.

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There are 36 comments. Add yours.

johncblandii says:

"Part of this is certainly the unbaked nature of virtually all iPad competitors to date"
I'd agree on some but the Tab 10.1 is far from unbaked. Granted, prior to TouchWiz you could argue that but with TouchWiz it is top notch.
Agreed [re: the rest].

codespiro says:

Problem is that the touchwiz ux has been pulled until further notice. The result is two different looks for the same product and a lot of frustrated buyers.

johncblandii says:

When? I bought my Tab last week and TouchWiz was available. Have a source?

johncblandii says:

Gotcha. That's temporary though. They are working out a dot release and will push better build.
Unfortunate? Yep. Did they drop the ball? Yep. Concern of mine? Nope...I have TW running perfectly fine. :-D

codespiro says:

Just google toucheiz ux. You will find several links.

d2globalinc says:

Ditched 2 ipads for Galaxy Tab 10.1's - Can't beat the screen / resolution and as far as apps.. Pulse, a good web browser that views any content, and all other major apps available or equals. Sorry but iPad has 1 thing going for it and thats APPLE marketing... Its a good starter tablet, but to me its too fisherprice.

cardfan says:

That answer could be Microsoft with windows 8. Apple won't be hurting for some competition.

AlienSix says:

Windows 8 I think will be interesting to watch, that will be true iPad competition

TKFox007 says:

I totally agree, Windows 8 will be what people want, a desktop OS in a tablet

Erik Bock says:

You mean "Another Desktop OS on a tablet"?

johncblandii says:

Not really. Windows 8 has a tablet portion but you can drop down to regular Windows as well.

Top Gear says:

People want that? And the proof is...? Certainly not the fact that Windows on tablets has been tried before and has failed each time? And you do realize that those desktop apps won't magically transform into touch friendly apps, right? That when you want to use one of those apps like legacy Word, it will convert back to the desktop version of Windows, and that will be no different than those failed tablets of the last 10 years.
Not saying it can't succeed, but it will be starting from the ground up, just like Honeycomb tablets and the Touchpad. In other words, apps like Word will have to be rewritten for touchscreen friendliness. In other words, Apple is off to a head start with iWorks, which I think will continue to be more advanced than any tablet version of Word for a long time to come.
I'm going to put my money on people not wanting a desktop OS in a tablet.
They want an iPad.

Brian says:

yup, its all about app support. I much prefer my touchpad over my iPad as far as ease of use, UI, multitasking, however its missing some apps that would really make it great, sadly that's all most people care about, apps over function. Its great using flash on my touchpad!

Wayne Williams says:

You people kill me with the Flash thing.

johncblandii says:

"You" people????? j/k. lol.
Having Flash is way better than being told you can't have it. :)

Erik Bock says:

I agree. I can count on 1 hand the number of times I've been burned by the "No Flash" support. Come on people Flash is terrible and has live out its useful life. Time to move on to the next technology, even Adobe realizes this.

johncblandii says:

Adobe told you they realize Flash is done?

johncblandii says:

@ trenen I'm an Adobe Community Professional. Look me up. ;-) I'm very aware of Adobe's roadmap for Flash and their HTML5 direction.
Adobe makes tools. They've made HTML/CSS tools for years. The same continues today.

johncblandii says:

@ trenen I understand your assumption but they have been pushing Dreamweaver [which has had html animations for years] and PHP integration even though they own ColdFusion. Are they phasing out CF? Nope.
Adobe provides tools for both sides and truly believes HTML and Flash live together, not against each other. If Flash was being phased out they would have stopped dev'ing AIR and the Flash Player but here are Lab links to beta builds for both:http://labs.adobe.com/technologies/flashplatformruntimes/air3/http://labs.adobe.com/technologies/flashplatformruntimes/flashplayer11/
You are simply incorrect. I understand why but it doesn't change the fact.

OrionAntares#CB says:

So, I read the article title on the feed list and before even opening it the first think that came to mine, "oh another one of Rene's articles." Was not disappointed, at least in that respect....

Todd Colbert says:

Blackberry Playbook a rival? HP Touchpad a rival? Give me a break, anyone with a hint of knowledge about Android in general knows both those tablets are garbage. It's either an Asus, Samsung, or Moto at the moment. HP is junk and Blackberry went down the drain a while ago. Sadly Orion you are right. I could have assumed it would be an article by Rene. Don't get me wrong, I am typing this on a MBP but I still much prefer Android over iOS for mobile any day. And yes I had an iPhone 3G and 4.

GibMcFragger says:

Its true. I had two of the top of the line android phones and the ASUS transformer tablet before I came BACK to the iPhone 4.
Nothing beats iOS as far as fluidity and ease of use. Android is trying but the apps just aren't there. I ended up using the tablet as an e-reader most of the time because the browser was horrid and the productivity apps were marginal at best.
The HARDWARE in the android phones and tabs is top notch, but it really means nothing when Gingerbread/Honeycomb is slow and bogged down by the crappy UI (Touchwiz, Sense, Motoblur, etc) that the companies stick on top.
They are better when you root them and run custom roms and kernels, but they still don't run as smooth as iOS or have the app support.

Top Gear says:

I ended up using the tablet as an e-reader most of the time because the browser was horrid and the productivity apps were marginal at best.
Had the TF too. Same here, though it was too heavy as an ebook reader. :P

Lupe says:

I have to agree. webOS on the touchpad is very easy to use. I had bought my mother an iPad because at the time, it was easy for her to use what she mostly wanted. Browsing the web, email, and sadly enough..facebook. I demo the touchpad to her and she loves the ease of use over the touchpad. Its mostly due to the notifications and the multitasking aspect. I informed her about the hit home button twice but she knows that and its pretty spotty when she does it so she doesn't do that :/.

Robert Blum says:

The FusionGarage Grid 10 looks like it might have the stuff, and be pretty intuitive and easy to use out of the box. Its apps catalog relies on Amazon for Android apps and Grid apps are probably few, but it has potential. I will say I'm impressed that it appears to be competitive. It isn't so much unbaked and invisible, so who knows.
I'll stick with my iPad for now.

Jonessports44 says:

It's all about being part of the Apple culture. I don't really think consumers are ready for tablets for the most part or know what to do with them. Thus you won't see any true competitor for a really long time if at all. Tablets are huge phones that you aren't particularly mobile and you'd never want to use them to talk or text. Sure it's a really nice luxury item but you'd be hard-pressed to find anyone that really needed a tablet. That's why these other products fail. There's no compelling reason at all to buy one. People buy ipads for the thrill of being part of the Apple culture and then feel justified when there's a few things that you can find to do with it. It's also comforting knowing you have a very well made product that will always be supported and always be improved upon. I love Apple products and own an Ipad however this is the reality.

Jay Mobile says:

I am sorry sir but if it were not for the last sentence in your comment I was ready to say that this is a post made by someone who does not own an iPad. The iPad is extremely convenient and whether or not anyone likes technology is moving forward and not backwards. If we are against iPads then we should be against fast food place that basically makes the same things that you could make at home, but the point is that it is convenient to just stop and grab a burger on the way too or from work. The same way it is convenient to type a paper on an iPad (yes it is possible) without having to sit in front of a desktop or wait in your school's computer lab. I love being able to read a book on my iPad and take notes without wasting paper or walking around with a bunch of notebooks.
In hindsight when I think about it I wonder if another company made the iPad and not Apple would there be such hate towards this "Apple fan club" that supposedly exist. The point is when a company makes a good product it will sell, when you make crap you get crap sales and every other tablet has proven that. People should not get upset with Apple for doing what they say that they will do.

Erik Bock says:

I completely disagree with this. I have almost replaced my laptop with an iPad. I rarely go to meetings with a laptop anymore. I definitely leave the laptop in my room when I go to a conference and I'm thinking there are several million people that have purchased iPads that would disagree with you as well. What should be said is that there is no compelling reason to by an Android tablet. (I know that was really fan boy sounding) The reality is that the apps available on the iPad are much better even the apps that are on both platforms. Granted Google might be making a run at Apple overall now in the world of mobility (Phones and Tablets) but Apple has a lock on ergonomics and style that nobody can currently compete with. Throw on top of it a much friendlier UI in iOS and Google has a long way to go.

TKFox007 says:

But Apple does strong arm their competition with all sorts of frivolous lawsuit patents as they try to control the market.
But yes, a bunch of the Android tablets are garbage, the best ones are either the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 or the one made by Asus. The Xoom is junk and slow as molasses. The HP Touchpad is awesome but has no app support and the Playbook is the Blackberry Storm all over again.
The iPad was the first successful tablet and iOS is also the most popular mobile OS, it's the one that everyone wants to develop for. Because they'll make the most money from it. And it's doing so well because of the iPhone, the first touch screen smartphone that was well polished and user friendly and didn't have the stink of Windows Mobile or Palm OS.

Erik Bock says:

You hit that pretty much on the head though I kinda disagree with the first statement as Samsung kinda started this with Apple wanting them to disclose all their IP on on the iPhone 5 and the iPad 3

troyanthony says:

Uhm, if there is no viable competition on the market then why is Apple crying foul over the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1? If the iPad is on another level then why fight an endless battle over a non-factor?

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