Steve Jobs always argued that tablets are not PCs. He was right. Where a tablet was once thought to replace laptops, now it’s mostly seen as an entertainment or media consumption device. Also, the fast-growing popularity of e-readers such as the Fire and Nook further define at least some tablets as low-cost devices.

That isn’t to say some work gets done on tablets and e-readers. People read and respond to emails, for example. A few take notes during meetings. But those are relatively trivial applications, since users can take care of the former using a smart phone, and the latter any number of other ways.

As Microsoft gets ready to launch its own line of tablets, some argue it is getting to the party late. As Forrester Research notes, current tablet leaders will already be on their third generation tablets by the time the first Windows 8 slate hits. As time progresses, consumer interest in a Windows tab is rapidly slipping. Tablet demand

In the first quarter of 2011, 46 percent of potential tablet shoppers wanted a Windows tablet, but in the third quarter, that number dropped to just 25 percent. During the same time period, Android’s appeal gained some ground going from nine percent in the first quarter of 2011 to 18 percent in the third quarter, although it still trails Windows.

In the third quarter of 2011, 28 percent of potential buyers are interested in an Apple iOS device, compared to 16 percent in the first quarter.

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