Once upon a time, there was a desktop. Then came the handy laptop that widely replaced the desktop in no time. Next was tablet, which somewhat served the purpose of a PC, though couldn\’t replace laptop. And then¦hybrid computers were born a crossbreed of laptop and tablet.
Widely categorizing, there are various kinds of hybrid computers. Some hybrids have a dedicated detachable keyboard, in some other cases sold separately. Hybrid tablets have a standard tablet base with a detachable keyboard that resembles a laptop keyboard. They are usually sold together as parts of the same product, unlike slates, whose keyboards are an optional accessory. Other variations are laplets and convertibles. Laplet is a portmanteau of the words laptop and tablet; it is a cross of these device types. Convertible tablets have a slate tablet top-half with a keyboard bottom-half. They more closely resemble laptops, usually considered more as laptops than tablets, and are heavier and larger than slates.
The timeline of hybrid computers dates back to 2009 when the first products were officially launched. Among them was the Archos 5, a pocket-sized model with a 5-inch touchscreen, that was first released with a proprietary operating system and later (in 2009) released with Android 1.4. Many more products followed in 2010. Several manufacturers waited for Android Honeycomb, specifically adapted for use with tablets, which debuted in February 2011.
Tablets that evolved as hybrids¦
Tablets are the new darling of consumer technology. The burst of fanfare generated by the iPad\’s initial release never faded, nor have sales. Dramatic success has encouraged definitive proclamations from industry prophets. The PC is dead long live the tablet! Recent sales figures seem to back up the arguments but a challenger approaches. Hybrids, a category so small that its sales are not individually tracked, is the real heir to the PC\’s throne.
Hybrids are a step towards a vision of future computing that replaces the PC with a dockable device that connects to a wide variety of peripherals. Future consumers will forgo a wide range of partially redundant devices in favor of a master computer that can do almost everything.
Most enthusiasts dreaming of this future peg the smartphone as the heir to the PC\’s throne. This theory is interesting, yet unrealistic. How can a powerful processor and sufficient battery be crammed into such a small space? How can a user fully enjoy a device with such a small screen? There are no easy answers to these questions which may be why Samsung\’s Galaxy Note II has had become popular despite jokes about the junk in its trunk. And that is not the only one in the joke-book!
The future of computing will be a story of convergence, not divergence. Multiple devices will fuse into a single master computer. This will not be tablets or smartphones, which are incapable of replacing modern PCs hybrids will rise to take on this new role. The tablet will remain, but it will be pushed into low-cost markets or sold as an add-on to a computing ecosystem built around the hybrid. Viva la hybrid!
But the trend?
Everyone is talking about hybrid and many have already been scoring at the stores. However, the trend didn\’t start until the mighty three tech-biggies stepped in to the market of hybrid computers. And that\’s exactly what we are trying to prove in the following pages.
There was Asus Transformer Book, there was Dell Convertible Ultrabook, there was Acer Aspire Switch and there was HP convertibles to name a few¦but the revolution has begun the day Microsoft Surface Book, Google Pixel C and Apple MacBook Pro came to the stage. And the real game has started since then. The evolution of hybrid laptops has just begun thanks to these mighty threesome.
The current scenario showcases that the comparison is going strong and tough between these, although the Pixel C can\’t stand the other two! Let\’s peek at a quick comparison between the much talked about Apple MacBook Pro, Microsoft Surface Book and the Google Pixel C.
Apple MacBook Pro 15-inch specs:
- Display: 15.4-inch screen with 2,880 x 1,800 display resolution (220 PPI, Pixels Per Inch).
- Processor: Intel Quad-Core i7 processor clocked at 2.5GHz with Turbo Boost up to 3.7GHz(Can be configured to 2.8GHz of the same processor with Turbo Boost that can reach up to 4.0GHz.)
- GPU: Intel Iris Pro Graphics with AMD Radeon R9 M370X with 2GB DDR5 dedicated VRAM
- RAM: 16GB
- Memory: 512GB PCIe-based flash storage that can be configured to 1TB.
Google Pixel C specs:
- Display: 10.2-inch screen with 2,560 x 1,800 display resolution and 308 PPI
- Processor: Octa-Core nVidia Tegra X1 chip
- GPU: nVidia Maxwell graphics card
- RAM: 3GB
- Memory: 64GB built-in storage
Microsoft Surface Book specs:
- Display: 13.5-inch screen and a display resolution of 3,000 x 2,000
- Processor: Intel Skylake i7 or also known and referred to as Intel i7 6th gen
- GPU: nVidia GeForce GPU with 1GB dedicated VRAM
- RAM: 8GB that can be upgraded to a maximum of 16GB
- Memory: Choice of 128GB SSD, 256GB, 512GB or even 1TB SSD
Quick conclusion: In terms of specs, Pixel C doesn\’t really stand to the comparison of the other two, but it is certainly one of the trend-setter hybrid computers. With the advent of these convertibles, we are sure the next tech-trend is all about hybrid computers and it would be faster and wider than ever.