Will Tablet PCs Become Big Sellers?
Despite Microsoft's high hopes for its Tablet PC, set to be formally launched on Thursday, the device will not be flying off of the shelves any time soon, according to a forecast Wednesday by research company Dataquest, a division of Gartner.
Tablet PC shipments will reach 425,000 units, representing 1.2 percent of worldwide notebook shipments in 2003, Dataquest predicts in a statement promoting it research paper, "Tablet PC Is Coming, But Slowly."
Microsoft has put considerable muscle behind both the Tablet PC device
and the pen-based operating system,
Nevertheless, the high price of devices (expected to be around $2000),
coupled with clumsy
Though the Tablet PC will appeal to businesses in vertical industries that already use applications with pen-based tablets, even the most interested potential customers will likely evaluate one to ten Tablet PCs for between six and nine months before deciding to make any volume purchases, Dataquest says.
Microsoft can take heart: Interest will eventually translate into Tablet PC sales, and by 2007 at least 35 percent of all notebooks sold will have screen digitizers with a convertible or separable keyboard design, the research company says.