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2012: When the tablet became affordable

Nidhi Singal     December 31, 2012
Nidhi Singal
Nidhi Singal
Tablet evolved like never before in 2012.  As the year progressed, they started adding more processing power and better displays, even as they became affordable. The 7-inch tablet also became more popular, mostly due to the fact that it was cheaper than a 10-incher and was more convenient to use. And by the end of the year, we were winding up to welcome the Windows 8 tablets and hybrids.

The year started with the launch of Apple's 'new iPad' which came with a new Retina display and an advanced processor, good enough to keep it at the helm for the rest of the year.

Meanwhile, Google decided to take the Android challenge to iPad's dominance a step ahead by pairing up with Asus to design and manufacture the Nexus 7. But while this tablet has a very affordable $199 price tag abroad, it costs almost double at Rs 20,000 in India. The popularity of this 7-inch tablet even forced Apple to come up with a 7.9-inch iPad.

Meanwhile, Samsung introduced its popular S-Pen functionality to its 10 inch tablet as well as the Ativ Smart PC for Windows 8. The later is among the first wave of Windows 8 hybrids to hit the market.

There was a lot of action in the affordable segment as well. The first quarter of 2012 say a host of 7-inchers in the Rs 12,000 to Rs 15,000 price range. The prices fell drastically after that and now there are options even for under Rs 5,000. While Datawind made up the bottom with the commercial Ubislate versions of its Aakash II tablets, Micromax's competitively priced Funbook did extremely well in the market. HCL, Zync, Mercury, Penta too came up with affordable tablets.

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