The Next Tablet Battleground: “Make Mine a Mini”

google-nexus-7-tablet (1)Apple is brilliant. They have successfully captured and owned the tablet market since the introduction of their iPad in 2010. Since then the category has exploded, The Tablet Breakout. Thought by many to be a niche product (alas, me included) tablets have quickly become commonplace in American homes and business. Tablets, Tablets Everywhere.

Apple dominates the category at roughly 60% market share. No one else is close. But the $599+ price for the iPad has been a deterrent to some.

At $199 Amazon’s Kindle Fire was thought to be the right entry price for many with a smaller (7 inch vs. 10 inch product). It was for some yet still is a distant second in the category . However, the next wave of “minis” could change the category in the coming months.

First of all, Google has introduced its brand new Nexus 7, which will ship in 2 weeks to those who have already pre-ordered it. The Nexus 7 is a small (7 inch), thin, 12 ounce tablet which operates on the Android operating system, which to date has not done well in the tablet format. That may change. The Nexus 7 works on the latest Android software, version 4.1 Jelly Bean, is easy to operate and solves many of the differences of the mini pioneer, the Kindle Fire. It has a voice feature like Apple’s Siri and, at $199, is great value for those wanting to get into the category but unwilling to fork over $599 or more.

But not to be undone, Apple is in the process of creating its own mini which will be introduced this October. Pricing has not been announced, but the price point of $299 has been rumored, which would represent a significant discount from the larger iPad. Furthermore, Amazon will be launching 3 newer, better versions of the Kindle Fire this fall as well. Additionally there are reports that Amazon is also creating a rival smartphone to Android phones that run on Google’s mobile operating system.

Lots of new technology this holiday season. No lack of interesting holiday gifts as the newest technologies become mainstream.

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