Is 2012 the Year of the Tablet?

The Year of the Multimedia Tablet

One day, the year 2012 may be remembered as the year of the multimedia tablet device. At least five companies--Amazon, Google, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, and Microsoft--have released upgraded or new tablet devices, all aimed at competing with Apple's iPad, the undisputed king of the tablet computing realm. Indeed Apple also released a new device--the iPad Mini. Once again, tablets and digital readers are poised to dominate holiday gift giving, thanks to a marketplace crammed with reasonably priced, high-performance devices. Here is a chart of the most popular tablets that offer consumers a place to read e-books and other content.

iPad, iPad Mini

Price: iPad: ($500, 16GB) to start; iPad Mini ($329, 16GB) to start; iPad 2 ($400, 16GB)

Screen: iPad: high res 9.7-in. screen; iPad Mini: 7.9-in. screen (no Retina Display on iPad 2 or iPad Mini)

Operating system: iOS6

Processor: 1.4GHz dual-core

Camera: front and back facing

Titles/apps: 1.5 million free and for-pay books/250,000 iPad apps

Battery life: 10 hours (video)

Storage: 16GB, 32GB, 64GB

Connectivity: Wi-Fi/cell

Hype: It's an iPad, and now iPad Mini, world--the small unit's already sold millions. Other tablets are fighting for second place.

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SOURCE: Publishers Weekly
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