Why tablets will be huge: media convergence

Tablets will finally cause true media convergence. It’s been often discussed how books, magazines, web and TV will all merge. But so far this hasn’t really happened. Watching TV on the computer is inconvenient, reading books on computers is inconvenient, reading the internet on the TV is inconvenient.

At home, most people just want to lay back on the couch and be entertained. Tablets will allow them to do this for all media. Every family member can watch the TV program of his choice on a tablet on the couch. No need to discuss what program to watch. Tablets will take the social out of TV-watching. It’ll become more like book reading. Everyone his own book. But combination of twitter and tv will enable new social possibilities for tv watching.

Regarding books, improved tablet-screens will replace dedicated ebook readers. You’ll be using tablets to read books. At the same time, not all ebooks need e-ink. Current lcd technology, as used on the iPhone, is great for interactive children’s books.

Same thing for magazines and newspapers. We’ve already seen some compelling video of what magazines could look like on a tablet. Not sure what the difference between a magazine and a website is, i think publishers just want an app-store like way of selling you complete magazines. Just like iTunes LP, a way to make you spend more than you really want to.

Most people just consume the web, reading articles, watching photo’s, reading facebook updates. No need to sit behind a desk, or have a heavy or very-small laptop on your lap. Web surfing can be conveniently done using a tablet. And should you need to enter text, on-screen keyboards are getting better, and you can always use a bluetooth keyboard if you don’t like the onscreen keyboard.

Tablets will have the same effect on home media consumption as smartphones have on mobile devices. Everything will merge into one device. I’m convinced tablets will be a big hit for personal use. I’m not sure yet what the impact will be on business use of computers. What do you think?

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