Feel free to come back here in a couple of weeks and tell me I was wrong, but my gut instinct on this whole tablet thing is that the speculation so far mostly ignores one key ingredient, and that is that Apple will be wanting to completely change the game in some area or other. That area isn’t going to be tablet computing as the only people who bought a tablet PC in the last 8 years were sales reps. Nobody wants a tablet PC, they’re useless (I’m looking at you Crunchpad). So, I’m going to predict that Apple are going to change two games here.
The first, and widely guessed one is print media. The new device will provide beautiful seamless ways to purchase and consume magazines, books and newspapers in a digital format. This one is a fairly safe bet.
The second is TV. Media centres currently are generally the preserve of the nerd. In my entire family, I think I’m the only one who has a computer hooked up to the TV. Normal people don’t want the hassle of maintaining a computer just to watch movies or record broadcast programming. But what if they could have a touchscreen device which lets them rent the latest movies in HD through an easy, intuitive interface, and then instantly stream that movie to any TV in the house? What if this device could also let them buy content to keep, store it on the internal drive and provide a beautiful, visual way of browsing their media library? What if this device could provide TV on demand from most of the major broadcasters?
All of a sudden, we have a game changing device and Apple have taken over your living room by just making everything easy enough that your mum wants one.