Can students use a tablet to replace a laptop?

Can a tablet replace a laptop?

It’s back to school season and for a lot of parents, that means buying your kid a laptop or new computer to help them do their homework. This is especially important for kids going off to college because it’s nearly impossible to be a functional student nowadays without a computer. But tablets are increasingly becoming powerful tools that offer similar capabilities while allowing students to be more mobile. Can students use a tablet to truly replace a laptop?

“It depends on how much content creation they’re going to be doing versus consumption,” said Nick Stam, director of technical marketing at NVIDIA. “That holds true for not just the back to school kids but for everyone.”

Can a tablet replace a laptop?Tablets like the iPad 2, Tegra-powered Xoom and HP TouchPad offer a variety of advantages over a traditional laptop or notebook computer as these devices have tremendous battery life, generally wake up in an instant and create a strong connection with the user due to the touch interface. There is also something to be said about the much more mobile form factor that tablets represent – it’s easier to just throw one of these in your bag than it is to transport a laptop.

These tablets are also becoming increasingly more powerful and flexible, as NVIDIA will soon have a quad-core processor inside a tablet which will rival what top-of-the-line computers used to be able to do a few years ago. The accessory market is also creating new possibilities for how well a tablet can be used for students.

Take a look at the Asus Transformer: this tablet offers a cheaper, powerful, Android-based alternative to the iPad 2 and it is ideal for casual web surfing, intense social networking and video calls. When you combine it with its keyboard dock, it turns into a computing device that can handle most word processing needs thanks to its built-in document editing software. The keyboard does take some getting used to but after a few hours, users will be able to type at blazing speeds.

Can students use a tablet to replace a laptop?The iPad also has a full keyboard accessory for your typing needs and more and more applications are targeting the educational market. It also helps that the iPad 2 is seen as being very hip and that many educational institutions are taking a hard look at how this can aid education. Heck, you could even look at devices like the View 4G with its capacitive stylus as a great way for art-inclined students to be more productive on the go.

It’s not all roses with tablets though, as many classes require applications that just aren’t available on iOS, Android, QNX or webOS. Even simple things like accessing a school’s grade-tracking program may not work as smoothly on a tablet as on a standard notebook. I also don’t think that computer science fans will be happy trying to do hardcore coding on a tablet. While many apps are migrating toward these mobile platforms, the ecosystem is just not quite robust enough for

“My personal stance is that many kids wants both and the price points are coming down to the point where they can have them,” Stam said.

It used to be that buying a high-quality laptop would set a parent or student back at least $1,000 but the prices have come down dramatically where a Windows machine can be purchased for less than $500 and be powerful enough to handle a student’s needs. Tablets are still going to cost about $500 but those prices are quickly falling – the 7-inch Acer Iconia Tab A100 will land in the not-too-distant future with Honeycomb and an attractive $300 price tag. Much like iPods become the must-have accessory for students, tablets could soon be a relatively affordable computing accessory which can actually help students be more productive.

Can tablets replace laptops for students? Will tablets ever be able to fully replace a laptop for students? That day may not be as far as you think and Microsoft may be the company which can finally bridge that gap with Windows 8.

While we haven’t seen much of the next generation of Windows and tablets running this platform probably won’t be available until next year’s back-to-school season, this promises to give us all the advantages of a tablet while still retaining the power of a traditional machine. If it works as Microsoft says, Windows 8 tablets will provide a cool touch-based interface for tablets on the go and plugging these into a keyboard dock will give you power and accessibility of a full machine. You likely won’t have to worry about specialized education apps not being available because it will be Windows and many apps will already work out of the gates.

Students may not be able to replace laptops with tablets yet but that day is rapidly approaching. For now, tablets make a great supplement to computers if you can afford it.

  • Anonymous

    When there are better apps to take notes and then print them, then maybe they can replace laptops. There are some things tablets can’t do. Also browsers on tablets need to get better, some edu websites just don’t work.

    • zacamandapio

      Buy a playbook.

      • DarkHorse

        I
        believe tablets/smart phones have already replaced traditional type computers
        among the latest generation of kids. Most consider a desktop computer/laptop as
        a relic of the past and don’t have an iota of interest in the traditional forms
        of computers!

        • ebinroo

          My laptop crapped out recently and I thought that I would replace it with a tablet.  I bought the top of the line Asus tablet with a docking station keyboard. I used it for a week.  Man…I was so frustrated with it.  The Android System is great for a phone, but for a laptop?  Some of the problems I encountered were:
          –  use of the keyboard is totally different.  No right click.  All screens come up in Android format…not Windows format.  This means that your normal screen layouts are completely different.  All of your banking and normal screens are limited.
          –  Laptops come with a faster processor, especially nowadays.  The Asus that I bought had a 1.6ghz processor and it lagged a lot bringing up web pages and anything else.
          –  The Tablet locked up too many times and I had to restart it.  It seems to not handle too many tasks at once.

          I finally got my laptop fixed and after using this tablet for a week I was so happy to have Windows 7 back again.  I started out hating Windows 7, but now…    Anyways, I’d only buy a tablet for the convienance of a small portable computer, not to replace a laptop.

  • http://twitter.com/windsety Benny Yu

    They won’t replace notebooks unless they have a good physical keyboard and a good app to take notes, write reports on.  As of now tablets are more internet surfing and basic note taking, but it still doesn’t compare to a notebook for students.

  • Anonymous

    Think it would be a little difficult to write any paper of real length with a tablet, except with maybe the transformer. Also with what a tablet costs you can still get decently specs pcs for about the same price.

  • H. Gardiner

    I think once prices go down, tablet use is going to be everywhere in school and businesses. adoption is already starting at the college level so it’s just a matter of time and prices. the tech will evolve by itself.

  • http://www.facebook.com/neiljain83 Neil Jain

    For some perspective on iPads in education my nine year old nephew who has his own iPad told me yesterday that his 4th grade class in a public school will be doing everything on the iPad i.e. homework assignments, tests, reading etc. The school will be providing them. Laptops are useless in schools they are heavy.

  • Richardteasley

    I believe as we progress more and more venues traditionally dominated by the pc market will be overrunn by tablets with increased usability and performance. At the rate in which tablets are going i dont see a single task they wont one day be integrated into.

  • Pakiser

    I don’t believe a tablet can replace a laptop due to potential issues of compatibility, ease of access, and reliability. That being said, I do think they are increasingly useful tools and will only improve with time.

  • Eengle1344

    no tablets wont replace laptops right now for students maybe in the future

  • http://twitter.com/ardyhsv ardyhsv

    My tablet has already replaced my laptop for college. Books are heavy enough to carry around without the added weight of a laptop. The availability of the keyboard dock on the Transformer as well as the versatile office suite included allow me to leave my heavy laptop at home!

  • http://www.facebook.com/TedofChicago Nick Perez

    I don’t know about Tablets. They just feel so… limited.

    • Anonymous

      You’re limited

  • http://www.facebook.com/TedofChicago Nick Perez

    I don’t know about Tablets. They just feel so… limited.

  • Alan T.

    You make many great points.  I too would like to see the prices of tablets fall to more reasonable levels for students.  I like using a physical keyboard for all work-related and school related projects and assignments.  Unless you buy a keyboard accessory for your tablet, I see that point as a limitation.  I might consider tablets as a secondary device to laptops for activities that don’t require much typing.  

  • Anonymous

    As much of a bane Flash is on PCs, it sucks even harder on tablets.  Until HTML5 comes of age, a tablet won’t be able to replace a laptop for a typical media-consuming college student.

  • PacoBell

    Everyone commenting on tablets’ limitation in content creation forget about one great technological enabler: remote desktop services. I believe Citrix and others have mobile software that allows any educational institution to offer desktop software to a variety of different platforms. At least with the LogMeIn Ignition app on Android, the experience has been nothing short of incredible. It truly its a joy to use.

    Just a word about the Transformer’s keyboard dock. Normally, I’d shy away from such things as they’re proprietary and don’t usually add any new functionality that a generic Bluetooth keyboard couldn’t duplicate. However, Asus’ decision to add an extra battery to the dock is exactly the innovation that makes it worth it. Kudos I say!

  • Kjblackbird

    Yes especially with a keyboard like the transformer!

  • Tracy Smith

    I much prefer touchscreen over a touchpad, it just comes down to how much you need to use the keyboard and how numb your fingers get typing on a touchscreen.

  • Uglyeuggie

    getting a tablet + the keyboard attachment makes it a very viable replacement for laptops.  You don’t really need it for a whole lot except for word processing/taking notes/writing code/music…. so i think you can save some money by getting the tablet

  • jsmith

    Still trying to decide this

  • jsmith

    Still trying to decide this

  • http://twitter.com/scabbard1 Dennis Moore

    Until schools move away from standardized use of Office and not require so much word processing, tablets will never take over. In addition, laptops that function well enough are cheaper than a comparable tablet.

  • http://twitter.com/ericwilborn Eric Wilborn

    The only way I see this as a possibility is with a Bluetooth Keyboard for devices besides the Transformer. Even then there is the (un)reliability of a WiFi network depending on the quality of campus on which you reside. Ethernet ports are an overlooked feature. USB ports also come in handy.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100002840772324 Chuck Gerage

    I think once software makers such as Microsoft start creating their apps to be used on tablets just like laptops, it will become more mainstream to use a tablet to replace a laptop. For now, I’ll be using Polaris Office and Google Docs.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1438487056 Shela Yos Triska

    I definitely think the table are good fits for a student.  Especially commuters students

  • Zain

    Tablets are sleek and the most portable form if device that can suffice the need for a laptop and as well as well as your cell phone to a certain extent. Students have access to apps like g docs and office available in the android market and app store for just $15 or $20 bugs which is the most cheapest alternative for the Microsoft Office. Adobe readers is available for free which fulfills the requirement of uploaded notes by the professor (in most cases). Besides that e book are way cheaper than paper books which in my opinion is the most prominent reason why tablets should be considered more by students as the touch interface makes it easier to surf through the pages (more convenient).

  • Punkdefied

    I am not fully convinced that a tablet can replace the need for a laptop.  I definitely think a tablet is great for taking notes during class but when you need to write those 20 page papers I know I would much rather have a laptop.  Also depending on your major if you have a lot of programming or other computer related classes you absolutely need a laptop with an OS that allows you to do those more specific tasks.

  • http://twitter.com/Kennjason Jason Kennedy

    I think you can absolutely replace a laptop with a tablet. That’s why I should win one. 

  • http://twitter.com/Snowx2k5 Neil T

    Generally speaking I would say no, tablets can’t replace a laptop.  But I think the Asus EEE Pad Transformer with the laptop dock could.  At the very least its as powerful as a netbook and in some cases I would say more powerful.  I don’t think the Apple iPad keyboard dock is nearly as useful so that’s why I don’t think the iPad could replace a laptop.

  • http://twitter.com/icecolddemon Phil Oakley

    Yep. My brother already does; uses an iPad for school and his MacBook Pro for homework and games.

  • Anonymous

    Tablets can replace laptops only when Microsoft innovates something with its next generation operating system, Windows 8. Android and iOS still need to have hardcore apps which can replace laptops. Until then, I am planning to go for a Lenovo based lappy by end of this August. 

    • Anonymous

      I agree. I believe that Windows 8 could be the solution

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Darrell-Waites/635788453 Darrell Waites

    They can be useful if you dont have access to computers.You can check email.Which is a big help sometimes.

  • http://twitter.com/bconner1 Brian Conner

    Taking notes quickly on a tablet may be difficult. If I was in front of a tablet, I’d probably want to play games and zone out so I stick to printed PowerPoint slides and taking notes ;)

  • Anonymous

    Tablets can’t replace a laptop, ever. Laptops will almost always have more features, such as more inputs, bigger screen, optical drive, physical keyboard, etc – features that will unlikely be found in any tablet. With that said, tablets are like supplements to laptops. They can be used for playing games, surfing the net, checking email, Facebook, typing a few notes in class, etc. all without the extra bulk!

  • Shane Horsley

    I think tablets can be very useful but I do not believe they are able to fully replace laptops, yet!

  • http://www.facebook.com/Chris.B.Barrett Chris Barrett

    As of right now, I think it may be possible to do with some of the higher end tablets with a few select majors that don’t require quite as hardware, or software for that matter (perhaps something such as the education field).  Another problem I think you run into is that most teachers are strict and require everything to be done in the variety of microsoft programs, which means you’d need to have those installed on the tablets as well.

    While this may not be the most viable idea right now, I believe if you give it just another year or so, this would most certainly work.  With the advances in the speed of these processors in just two years ( thinking back to how slow my Motorola Droid is in comparison to the dual cores now…), its hard to imagine tablets not being a students choice of computer in the near future, just as netbooks have allowed students to do that now.

  • Jamie Hooks

     Tablets are the new laptop in my opinion. Every friend of mine who has a laptop and a tablet seem to use the laptop as a desktop pc and they carry their tablet like a laptop! That makes plenty of sense to me, because a tablet is less bulky, easier to charge, and has tons of extra features that a laptop doesn’t have. I don’t have a tablet yet, and that’s mainly because every time I save enough money to purchase one, it seems like my daughters need something more important..but i plan on buying one asap. Then I will be able to give you a better comment about this subject from a users point of view.                                                                                      
     The tech world has blown up lately,and i love it! I see more and more people using tech gadgets everyday and it makes me smile. A lot of the older generations are using technology in everyday life now. The world is changing! I honestly believe that every school in the world should implement tablets into their classrooms. It saves paper, its less bulky than laptops or desktop pc’s, the teachers could mount them into the students desk so theft is not an option…the possibilities are endless! It may take some time for everybody to accept and understand the tablet concept, but I can definitely see the tablet replacing the laptop in students lives. This was a great article Mr. Perez. Keep on carrying the the tech torch for us!

  • http://profiles.google.com/collegefreedom John Wilson

    Even the keyboard attachments to tablets aren’t quite as good as a regular keyboard unless you’re comfortable with them. But students may have easy access to a computer lab and so a tablet might be a good option for them. Still, with laptops at under $300, it seems like a good idea to get both.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100001407857409 Elizabeth Tran

    Tablets and laptops cost around the same nowadays, but the laptop does have more features and capabilities than the tablet. However, tablets are more convenient for carrying around school.

  • Drcaseyjr

    would be nice to have one.

  • http://www.facebook.com/gaurav.rajasekar Gaurav Rajasekar

    Having just started my grad school, I feel like tablets are everywhere, closely followed by netbooks and I’m the only one who seems to be carrying a heavy 15 inch monster around :( Tablets are most definitely very very convenient to have at hand when you don’t need the full capabilities of a notebook on campus. When you need to do some quick browsing, find some info off the internet, run an app that can help you note down a few things a teacher or professor says, try out something mentioned in class but not be weighed down by a heavy unwieldy machine… then most certainly laptops can be replaced by tablets at school for most practical uses that don’t require massive computing power.

  • a marie hj saver

    Seems like tablets would be easier to take with you, but would they work as well using some of the online course programs like Blackboard and WebCT?  If so, I think a tablet would make more sense than a traditional laptop.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100001578678199 Kenji Yamamoto

    Before tablets can fully replace laptops, something will have to be done about the lack of a good replacement for the keyboard.  Perhaps voice recognition or some other type of interface which can transform your thoughts into written word.  Until this happens we need the keyboard.

  • Jessica Leung

    I can see why a tablet is nice…more mobile, lighter, etc etc. But tablets need to evolve their software before it can replace a laptop. Try going on things like WebCT, blackboard or pulling up podcasts or even trying to type as quickly as you can on the tablet – the laptop still wins. I have to say though, using the tablet for powerpoint slides while I’m taking notes by hand is much nicer than having my laptop on my tiny little desk.

  • melinda g

    I don’t think the tablet will eclipse the laptop for students. You have to have that external keyboard to be productive, that’s two items to keep track of, it doesn’t make sense to me.

  • Anonymous

    I don’t think that tablets could fully replace laptops, just because students would have to carry around a bluetooth keyboard along with the tablet to type quickly and effectively. That’s too much trouble in my opinion.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Clayton-Chabannes/1026344257 Clayton Chabannes

    I think a tablet is moving towards being able 

  • Tazo157

    Tablets are getting there. They have a lot of power and there are so many apps for them. Students can take notes and can communicate using cameras. They are portable and can last most of the the school period. If a tablet has an excellent keyboard that isn’t cumbersome, it can definitely be used to replace the laptop.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Octavio-Perez/100002783398674 Octavio Perez

    Yes, tablets can replace laptops because they are easier to carry around are touchscreen and some tablets come with a keyboard if the student wants to type something and some tablets are about half as strong as an xbox360 in regards to the graphics area of a tablet so the are starting to come out with decent power for most students that don’t need a laptop and all the equipment it to carry around. 

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100001804560507 Dung La

    Tablets is easy to take with you. It also has touchscreen and comes with full keyboard. If you are not a graphic design student. The tablet can replace a laptop for most students.

  • Anonymous

    Yes, because I’m sure fellow students aren’t actually taking notes in class.

  • Katie R

    I think one day tablets might replace laptops in the classroom. They just aren’t quite there yet. But one day I see them almost becoming a laptop/iPad hybrid and then they will take over the world.

  • Anonymous

    I say yes, tablets have been around for a while and they are now getting more powerful and more portable.  With the ASUS Transformer’s docking keyboard, it brings the worlds of tablets and laptops together.  Also the many selections of bluetooth keyboards for iPads.  You may not have the large software selection that laptops do, but for taking notes and playing some games, tablets are a great student device.

  • Jack Warman

    At this point, tablets may not be a full replacement for laptops, but certainly a reasonable supplement.  That is, we’re not yet at the point where a thesis will be authored on one (although, it is, of course, possible), but tablets can make great note taking and research tools.  And, using services like Dropbox, the notes can be easily stored back on a full computer for later review, edit and organizing.  And, services like SugarSync or remote desktop apps further extend the reach of a tablet back to the computer.  

    Lastly, as more kids become comfortable with on-screen typing via phones and pda-sized devices, the virtual keyboard becomes less of a barrier to true content creation on tablets. 

  • Kyle Weierbach

    Table are just too limited at the moment to be a viable replacement for a laptop. My perfect vision for a tablet would be akin to the Motorola Atrix 4g’s webtop technology. A tablet like the Transformer should become a laptop, running a full linux build, when connected to the keyboard dock. But, it should still show the phone interface in a window, like the Atrix’s webtop. This should be a stock feature for android.

    Maybe Windows 8 will fufill this fantasy before Android. If it does it well Android may finally have a real competitor.

  • Roddy Neff

    I think that eventually laptops will go the way of the dinosaur as tablets become more and more powerful.

  • http://profiles.google.com/toonces1989 Cathy Evans

    My daughter would love to have a tablet to carry to class instead of a laptop.  Laptops are portable but gets heavy lugging it across campus all day.

  • http://patmahoneyjr.com Patrick Mahoney

    Especially with all of these quad-core tablet rumors coming out, I totally believe that I will soon replace my laptop with a tablet.  I am also very excited for that day to come.  I really only have to do basic word processing on my laptop, so I think that I could probably already replace it with a transformer or the slider if it ever comes out.  I just got a bunch of big, fat textbooks too which barely fit in my backpack.  It would be nice to carry a 1.49 pound slab of awesome instead…

  • http://twitter.com/MyIntersperse Bruce Burke

    I would think that tablets are a natural for students. Our local high school here in town (Clearwater High School) has issued kindles in place of textbooks to all the students this year. Can moving all the lessons to the tablet be far behind? It just makes more sense, is greener and homework is easily turned in and graded with right infrastructure in place. In the days of yore the childern used an individual slate at their desk. So whats so different in Generation-M? Technology finally caught up to us…

  • http://twitter.com/kapakai kapa kai

    I love my iPad but I still need to switch back & forth to my laptop cause it can’t do everything I need to do like alot of typing with a keyboard, flash, some sites aren’t made for mobile,etc. So right now now, but hopefully soon….

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=57104459 Eric Geders

    I have not jumped on the tablet wagon yet, but I do agree that tablets are very quickly catching up with laptops. I expect to get a tablet in the next year or two, so we’ll see.

  • Jennifer Evancho

    I am open to the concept of tablets to replace laptops but I believe a windows based tablet would be the most appropriate choice for young students due to the fact that there are inappropriate for the classroom applications available on Android, iPad, and Blackberry devices. A Windows “traditional machine” would be a great option for students.  My self, I believe the Asus Transformer would be a second option due to the attachable keyboard.

  • http://www.danielruby.com/ Daniel Ruby

    I find it hard to see tablets replacing laptops for students. To really effectively take notes, you kind of need a physical keyboard. Adding a keyboard to a tablet just makes it a disassembled laptop.

  • Lance

    I’m an IT student and will be getting a Transformer 2 when they are realeased.  I plan on leaving my big gaming laptop (ASUSG74) at home and carrying this with me on campus.  If I need anything I’ll just remote desktop into my laptop and I have everything stored on my NAS so I can access all my files from either device.  It takes a little more to make it work for power usage, but the keyboard dock of the transformer make it much more useful and able to replace a laptop.

  • Joshua

    I have been using an iPad for school for a bit now. Like others have said, a keyboard is huge for note taking. There needs to be an easy way to pack a really keyboard. Logitech’s cover/keyboard and asus’s transformer are on the right track.

    Stronger Word compatible programs are needed too. I need different headers and styles for my anthro classes vs my polysci classes vs other ge classes. A real laptop with the full versions of word or pages is still required for me. I’ve worked around this by making custom templates on my computer and then moving it over.

    Lastly Ethernet ports are still a necessity. This summer term I did I study abroad in china, and took only my iPad. As I’ve traveled arund Asia, Ethernet ports have been easier to find than wifi. Also, mobile safari freaks out sometimes when a login page is required before access to the Internet is granted.

  • Pete Mansfield

    I love my Xoom and I use it all the time.. for consumption.  There is a lack of productive applications for tablets thus far that I think limits their usefulness when compared to a laptop.

  • http://twitter.com/bigvincec li

    I think it’ll be easier to use a laptop in the classroom. If trying to use a tablet you’ll need a stand and a keyboard.  Too much of a hassle

  • http://twitter.com/SamuelDH7 Samuel DH

    I still think the normal laptop is better, although a tablet might be easier. You just can’t beat a normal physical keyboard. I haven’t used a tablet for school yet though, it would be a learning curve for anyone.

  • Anonymous

    I work on Laptops and Tablets, and i am going to school online for my masters degree, i have tried to work strictly on a tablet for a week and see how it did and to many times i get irritated and want my laptop, there is incompatibly issues with many things and tablet browsers are another issue for example my school site will not work on the tab 10.1 browser, so i need Firefox, but other sites on Firefox take you to the mobile site. also with windows 7 i can put two screens side by side and work that way, as well i am able to type allot faster just to name a few things. maybe with windows 8 tablets can replace them but not with android and no way will the ipad with no flash support

    • Batista

      That degree majoring in…Bation?

      • sl

        With your mom!!

      • sl

        With your mom!!

  • Anonymous

    I have to go with the laptop. Tablets are great for travel and short tasks. If you need to do heavy duty work, you really still need a laptop.

  • Anonymous

    I have to go with the laptop. Tablets are great for travel and short tasks. If you need to do heavy duty work, you really still need a laptop.

  • Anonymous

    I have to go with the laptop. Tablets are great for travel and short tasks. If you need to do heavy duty work, you really still need a laptop.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100001235596936 Jason Wilkinson

    Tablets can only replace computers if the tablet can do everything that the computer would need to do. I am an engineer and a tablet can run AutoCAD, but for 3D CAD like Autodesk Inventor and  other programs that haven’t been ported to the tablet, I would need a computer. I could use a tablet for notes and for typing reports, but to do the CAD designs, I need a Windows PC or Mac

  • http://twitter.com/fortunzfavor David Marseilles

    OneNote made up the bulk of my netbook usage during school.  Mobilenoter SE, which syncs with OneNote is still a little light on features on Android, but it’s getting to the point where a good tablet could replace a netbook for me.

  • Tom Yu

    I’m a Psychology and Communications student, minoring in Japanese.  To me, if you have, let’s say another computer at home, or, if you want to spend time at the school library to cramp up your last minute homework, then yes, it can replace a computer, or a laptop for that matter.  Personally, I’d love to have a laptop for school, for the purposes of taking notes, read articles, calendars, etc., the basics, since I think tablets are so much better at these than laptops.  However, when it comes to writing papers, as far as I know, none of the word editing applications support the academic formats, such as APA or MLA.  It is frustrating how it won’t do simple tasks as “different-on-first-page” headings, or make a page in a document landscape, etc.  But in general, the day-to-day tasks can be completed in a better manner if it is on a tablet I would say!

    • Tom Yu

      I’m a Psychology and Communications student, minoring in Japanese.  To me, if you have, let’s say another computer at home, or, if you want to spend time at the school library to cramp up your last minute homework, then yes, it can replace a computer, or a laptop for that matter.  Personally, I’d love to have a laptop for school, for the purposes of taking notes, read articles, calendars, etc., the basics, since I think tablets are so much better at these than laptops.  However, when it comes to writing papers, as far as I know, none of the word editing applications support the academic formats, such as APA or MLA.  It is frustrating how it won’t do simple tasks as “different-on-first-page” headings, or make a page in a document landscape, etc.  But in general, the day-to-day tasks can be completed in a better manner if it is on a tablet I would say!

      • Batista

        and you, YU, apparently stutter.muuuuhahahhaa

  • http://twitter.com/skip2k3 skip2k

    At this point I would have to say no, they do not replace laptops. The tablets are great for entertainment purposes but the reliability and the ease of use of laptops do not compare to the tablets at this point. Who knows maybe in the near future they will replace laptops when the software catches up and becomes more stable.

  • Liz M.

    Fascinating! With the new keyboard docking stations for tablets, tablets seem to be becoming a more viable alternative, not just something for touchscreen games and web browsing! Like the author, I don’t see them as a totally solid alternative just yet, but the day is on the horizon (and I’m sure lots of people are sick enough of lugging around their laptops that using tablets as laptop supplements is becoming increasingly common too.

    • Batista

      don’t get the whole lugging around the laptop thing. people are that lazy…wow!

    • Batista

      don’t get the whole lugging around the laptop thing. people are that lazy…wow!

  • David S.

    There is one reason and one reason only why a Tablet cannot replace a laptop.  The vast majority of people use Microsoft Office, and Microsoft is NOT going to create a version of its software to operate on Android, WebOS, etc.  It would be a huge revenue stream for Microsoft to have a cloud based Office OS that you could rent for .99 month and use on any mobile platform.  Until that day, or until Android/Google come out with their own Office Suite that is Microsoft Office compatible, not going to happen. And with Windows 8 coming out, and their recent acquisition of Skype, it looks like Microsoft is here to stay. 

    • http://www.facebook.com/originalcopy Travis Carroll

      There’s alternatives such as Google Docs, which is cloud based. Sure, Office is the most used but there is definitely other options that will allow people to use a tablet. The biggest problem is that the average words per minute on a tablet is a lot less than a laptop and keyboard (assuming a student isn’t using a keyboard dock station with the tablet).

      • Batista

        then if ur carrying a doc station that defeats the idea of the tablet and its portability.

      • Batista

        then if ur carrying a doc station that defeats the idea of the tablet and its portability.

      • Batista

        then if ur carrying a doc station that defeats the idea of the tablet and its portability.

      • Batista

        then if ur carrying a doc station that defeats the idea of the tablet and its portability.

      • Batista

        then if ur carrying a doc station that defeats the idea of the tablet and its portability.

      • Batista

        then if ur carrying a doc station that defeats the idea of the tablet and its portability.

    • Batista

      yeah i’d say here to stay. oh and google doc!

    • Batista

      yeah i’d say here to stay. oh and google doc!

    • Batista

      yeah i’d say here to stay. oh and google doc!

    • Batista

      yeah i’d say here to stay. oh and google doc!

    • Batista

      yeah i’d say here to stay. oh and google doc!

    • Batista

      yeah i’d say here to stay. oh and google doc!

  • http://www.facebook.com/originalcopy Travis Carroll

    I think it really all depends on the class and the student. For instance, some lecture classes may have a lot of notes at the end of the day, and a tablet simply cannot withstand the typing speed of a laptop (unless using a keyboard dock). But even then, when I’ve used a keyboard dock – I still don’t type as fast as if I were using a full QWERTY laptop keyboard. So I think, tablet hardware and accessories is definitely one boundary. On the other hand, classes where notes are not the core of the class, and other things like organization, and quick notes then the tablet could definitely replace the laptop. Also, as one use stated – tablets don’t have Microsoft Office and some people don’t know of alternatives or don’t want to try something else. I know for myself, a tablet could definitely replace my laptop. I take short hand notes, and could easily use freehand software for doing that. And of course the biggest perk for me, is that I wanted to purchase all my textbooks and books as e-books, but I don’t have a tablet and reading e-books on my laptop just isn’t efficient.

  • http://www.facebook.com/originalcopy Travis Carroll

    I think it really all depends on the class and the student. For instance, some lecture classes may have a lot of notes at the end of the day, and a tablet simply cannot withstand the typing speed of a laptop (unless using a keyboard dock). But even then, when I’ve used a keyboard dock – I still don’t type as fast as if I were using a full QWERTY laptop keyboard. So I think, tablet hardware and accessories is definitely one boundary. On the other hand, classes where notes are not the core of the class, and other things like organization, and quick notes then the tablet could definitely replace the laptop. Also, as one use stated – tablets don’t have Microsoft Office and some people don’t know of alternatives or don’t want to try something else. I know for myself, a tablet could definitely replace my laptop. I take short hand notes, and could easily use freehand software for doing that. And of course the biggest perk for me, is that I wanted to purchase all my textbooks and books as e-books, but I don’t have a tablet and reading e-books on my laptop just isn’t efficient.

  • Mtw4991

    Best option ever because regular laptops take up too much space in your backpack and are too heavy to lug around campus along with all your books. I’d kill my calc teacher for this prize! 

  • Sastover17

    This would be awesome to win!!! Thank you for the opportunity :)

  • Sastover17

    This would be awesome to win!!! Thank you for the opportunity :)

  • Jennifer Morgan

    Would love to win this!

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=655601008 Emily Ward

    I currently have an Ipad 1st generation. I am curious about the new tablets and what they can do.

  • Anonymous

    I think it’s certainly an uphill battle for tablets to replace laptops, especially tablets without physical keyboards. Tablets are luxury items for the most part and were introduced essentially as toys. Until you can show me one practical, educational thing that a tablet lacking a physical keyboard can do that my cellphone or my laptop cannot do, tablets as portable devices will remain nothing more than toys. That is, until a text input revolution emerges…

    Tablets with physical keyboards, on the other hand, could make great laptop replacements. I’m an undergraduate and all I use is my Atrix lapdock for written assignments. I don’t own a traditional laptop or desktop and I love it. Profs. here at Yale highly discourage technology in the classroom so I try to get my money’s worth out of my $20 moleskins. Asus has the right idea. They are perhaps the one tablet manufacturer that seemed to actually sit down and try to make a practical tablet at a reasonable price unlike others who seemed to see the ipad and produce an inherently impractical device because Apple was making a profit. I believe Apple could have charged $4,000 and they would have sold just as many ipads to the same amount of people as they did sell in reality. Luxury item = status symbol.

    The galaxy tab, on the other hand, was incredibly similar to the ipad and served as a great alternative for those who wanted the luxury item without eating the bourgeois apple. I would love a galaxy tab even if it’s just a luxury item.

  • geekchic21

    I still prefer a lap top. The only tablet I can maybe see taking the place of a lap top is an iPad.

    • Batista

      so let us totally dismiss the Android platform then.

    • Batista

      so let us totally dismiss the Android platform then.

    • Batista

      so let us totally dismiss the Android platform then.

    • Batista

      so let us totally dismiss the Android platform then.

  • Enoch Freeman

    Absolutely not. Maybe if you could install Microsoft Office or Apple desktop applications. But as the market is now, no.

  • Enoch Freeman

    I say no.

  • http://twitter.com/123nitin Nitin

    I think it will take some time before tablets replacing laptop. But then technology never fails to amaze you.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000589404738 Trasina McGahey

    Too many programs require Windows that are needed for projects for school. Because of that I don’t think that it’s realistic to expect tablets to replace laptops anytime soon. A tablet can work well in conjunction with a laptop to use for many other research type things and for easier portability and use.

  • Anonymous

    I’m so not understanding the Microsoft Office objection.

  • Anonymous

    I’m definitely agreeing with a lot of the posts here.  Microsoft Office is still really important – and the apps aren’t yet available.  Maybe when there is a stronger competitor to Office or there are Office apps – I’d bite.

    • Batista

      Google docs, Sun Micro Office…

    • Batista

      Google docs, Sun Micro Office…

    • Batista

      Google docs, Sun Micro Office…

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000066546819 Kovács Ádám

    There are only a few things that one cannot do on an android powered tablet in school. Like 3D modeling and animation. But who cares for that? The usual stuff (taking notes, learning) can definitely be done with a tablet and the portability and touch screen makes it a better choice.

  • betsmom

    we don’t even own a laptop to replace with a tablet

  • http://www.facebook.com/tparral Tracy Parral

    i think we almost there, but it could happen, but of course some of use don’t even have the laptop yet.

    • Batista

      coulda woulda shoulda education at its best!

    • Batista

      coulda woulda shoulda education at its best!

    • Batista

      coulda woulda shoulda education at its best!

    • Batista

      coulda woulda shoulda education at its best!

  • http://twitter.com/doorboy1970 Justin Ritter

    As long as you have a comfortable keyboard that you can plug in, and a secondary monitor, I’m guessing most students can get by with a tablet.  The instant-on capability is one of the greatest assets – you can just bring it right to your textbook or note-taking app for each class without having to power down or even hibernate between classes like you would with a laptop.

  • http://twitter.com/rutgers2k tony

    Tablets are better laptops with no one knew til now. 

  • http://www.facebook.com/chris.mcnair Chris McNair

    I think the iPad or tablet is a great concept for school, especially if the text book companies get on board and port all their books to the tablet format and lower their prices. I’m worried though that I’ll be paying for my son to major in Angry Birds. :)

    • Baptiste

      They will NEVER lower the price for books. Education and the costs interleaved with it are and have been out of control.

    • Baptiste

      They will NEVER lower the price for books. Education and the costs interleaved with it are and have been out of control.

  • Anonymous

    I definitely think a tablet can replace a laptop, but only if it can support flash!

    • Dognrun

      It does have flash its an optional choice… I think it will… because in some air port by the end of this year will replace on board T.V s with 6,000 samsung galaxy tab 10.1 1s… Thats how popular and by 2012 and 13 may be…

  • http://www.facebook.com/fgowdy Faison Gowdy

    In my opinion, tablets can be used for laptop replacement in certain areas. Areas like word processing, PowerPoint, and spreadsheets. I mean iPads got iWork apps and Android got documents to go so they’re good for writing research papers and presentations. Plus, they’re also great eReaders, so that also covers novels, digital class notes in PDF format, and some textbooks. Also, they’re super portable so compared to carrying around a laptop that’s a lot of weight off your shoulders (literally). But even with all these great features, they still lack in certain areas. Like, certain college majors require some additional applications that only works laptops, not tablets. Like, I’m an Electrical Engineering major and that also require some Computer Science so I need to use programs that will allow me to write, compile, and run computer codes and programs that will allow me to create schematics and current tablet OS’s can’t do any of those things. Hopefully Windows 8 can take care of that problem.

  • http://twitter.com/LC3186 lily

    yes! the tablets are way better. they are lighter to carry they wifi so in school it wont be a problem you can take it about anywhere and there not as big and heavy. so yes a tablets i think is way better.

  • elaine joy

    yes the tablets r so much better!

  • http://www.agentnerdy.com/ abitnerdy

    I can definitely see tablets replacing laptops in the future, if they can remedy the touch keyboard. try as I might, its hard to type very fast on a tablet, and that’s what I use my laptop most for during class.. to type. Yes you could just attach a keyboard, but then that sort of defeats the whole point of tablet vs laptop. 

  • Francisgonzales

    Tablets can replace a laptop especially that they are getting better and faster like the ASUS transformer it supports Android which is a huge plus and you can download apps to give you better tools for school and daily activity. and tablets is compatible with either keyboard mounts and blue tooth keyboards. You don’t need to bring a extra mouse for the tablet cause its touch screen aswell and can run flash which you can turn on or off base on increasing speed. HDMI output and expandable storage makes it a great tool for school projects notes and to prepare for you’re mid terms and finals.

  • Luisana109

    I strongly feel that technology and education go hand in hand, especially since I attended one of the first campuses to actually provide all their students with laptops. Will tablets ever replace laptops in a school environment in the near future – I’d bet no. Especially since I feel there are several things still missing from this equation before it could ever be used as the sole piece of working equipment in classrooms.

  • Jkclark89

    I’d say there’s a distinct possibility that tablets could overtake laptops for general student use. Once you move into the more specialized areas of study regarding design, drafting or editing, obviously a laptop would have to come into play, but for day to day note taking and organization, I’d say a tablet is easier and more accessible than a laptop.

  • Beth Elder

    I think the point here is that someday tablets will take over but for now laptops are still the computer we should buy.

  • Ldkjiac

    Is there a way to download school software to a tablet?  (obviously there isn’t a disk drive in the tablet but wondering if there is a way to transfer a different way).  The software I am referring to is an online algebra software, required for homework and quizes.

  • Baptiste

    another but that DAY IS COMING article. blah blah blah

  • Baptiste

    another but that DAY IS COMING article. blah blah blah

  • Baptiste

    another but that DAY IS COMING article. blah blah blah

  • Adhi

    Whichh tablet can be used to create powerpoint presentations

  • ss

    can c ,matlab etc softwares work on  asus transformer prime?

  • http://www.smartappsforkids.com/ best educational apps for kids

    In this article you will find the best iPad and iPhone apps or we can say Smartphone’s apps for the kids, their importance, usability and significance. More specifically best iPad apps in terms of usability, ability to hold interest, artwork, music and sounds, and value for money. There is lot of kids apps on the market already. In fact, there are so many, it takes some effort to find the best ones. There seems to be an endless amount of pair matching games and puzzles but not that many kids apps with original ideas

  • itz3mkxwolf

    im a student but i cant lol

  • knowledgenotebook

    Has anyone done any sort of survey of student ownership of laptops vs. tablets?

  • yoyu

    Tablets are useless until only thing you need is facebook, music, photos, and some games. No engineer will work on this Mickey-Mouse Cinema.
    This are gadgets. Will be there for some people but will never replace the PCs.

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