Laptops vs Tablets is Like Theatre vs TV

It is pretty tough to visit a tech bloggers site these days without stepping into a debate slinging insults back and forth about whether or not the iPad will replace laptops.

Technology evolution follows similar cycles, you just have to find the right paradigm.

At the turn of the 1900's most urban households made use of ice boxes that literally used ice. In northern climates the ice was cut from rivers in the winter, covered in sawdust, and sold throughout the year. The ice cutters were replaced by ice making companies who used refrigeration to make ice, and the ice makers were replaced by home refrigerators. No ice cutters, and few ice makers survive to current times.

By comparison theatre productions were not replaced by movies, and movies were not replaced by television. The parts and size of the market these entertainment technologies serve have changed over time, however they all survived.

It seems that the computer field with main frames, desktops, laptops and tablets will be closer to the theatres’ paradigm than the ice cutters’ paradigm. While few people have invested in a main frame for home, having a desktop personal computer, a laptop personal computer and an iPad does not seem out of the ordinary.

While preferences will vary, most people can selectively enjoy theatre, movies and television, without feeling like they have to take sides.