The tablet genre as defined by Apple’s iPad is beginning to look just like portable music players did back in the early days of iPod dominance. Mike Elgan on why Apple’s mobile devices succeed:
I’ll say it as plainly as I can: The iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad succeed mainly because of their user interface.
No, it’s not because of Apple hype, fanboy delusion, media gullibility, dirty tricks or anything else. Apple’s multi-touch user interfaces are appealing to use for reasons most users, reviewers, bloggers and journalists don’t fully understand.
Elgan’s observation points out the reason behind Apple’s loyal Mac users, too, despite the wild success of Windows (for reasons other than user interface). What would an iPad killer need?
Any “iPad Killer” will have to at least approximate the interface sophistication of the iPad itself. So far, nobody has come even close. Quite the contrary. Competitors thus far have demonstrated a conspicuous lack of emphasis on user interface design. And that’s why they fail.
One notable difference, too, is that imitators use PowerPoint and list page after page of features—USB, HDMI, et al—but never have bullet points which describe user interface capability, which is exactly where Apple focuses great attention.
It’s all about the experience, not a bullet point list of features.