iPad (1st generation), a tablet computer
A tablet computer, or simply tablet, is a mobile computer, larger than a mobile phone or personal digital assistant, integrated into a flat touch screen and primarily operated by touching the screen and instead of using a physical keyboard it often uses an onscreen virtual keyboard. A tablet computer may be connected to a keyboard with a wireless link or a USB port. Convertible notebook computers have an integrated keyboard that can be hidden by a swivel joint or slide joint, exposing only the screen for touch operation. Hybrids have a detachable keyboard so that the touch screen can be used as a stand-alone tablet. Booklets include dual-touchscreens, and can be used as a notebook by displaying a virtual keyboard in one of them.
An early information tablet concept, named the Dynabook, was described by a Xerox scientist Alan C Kay, in his Aug 1972 paper: A Personal Computer for children of all Ages, the paper proposes a touch screen as a possible alternative means of input for the device. The first commercial portable electronic tablets appeared at the end of the 20th century. In 2010, Apple Inc. released the iPad which became the first mobile computer tablet to achieve worldwide commercial success. The iPad used technology similar to Apple's iPhone. Other manufacturers have produced tablets of their own including Samsung, HTC, Motorola, RIM, Sony, Amazon, HP, Microsoft, Google, Asus, Toshiba, and Archos. Tablets use a variety of operating systems such as iOS (Apple), Android (Google), Windows (Microsoft), and QNX (RIM).
As of March 2012[update], 31% of U.S. Internet users were reported to have a tablet, which was used mainly for viewing published content such as video and news. Among tablets available in the market in 2012, the top-selling device is Apple's iPad with 100 million sold by mid October 2012 since it was released in April 3, 2010, followed by Amazon's Kindle Fire with 7 million, and Barnes &...