Tablets are changing the technology landscape in the Middle East.
There was a time only a few years back when tablets were newly announced and dismissed as redundant technology considering netbooks already captured that market. Today, they’re one of the highest selling technology devices and have single-handedly pounded the sales of netbooks around the world.
Forty-five years ago, the world got a glimpse of a futuristic device on the hit TV series, Star Trek. The flat slate-like device was literally a portable touch-screen computer that Captain Jean-Luc Picard famously flaunted. Today, this device is not just restricted to Captain Jean-Luc Picard. According to latest figures published by IDC, the shipment of tablets in Europe, Middle East and Africa is forecasted to reach 33 million units in 2012, an increase of 53 percent year-on-year.
Tablets are booming within the mobile devices industry, changing how people consume and create media content. Consumers and enterprise users across the GCC are rapidly adopting the new technology largely due to the tablets’ thin and light form factor and powerful computing capabilities. To meet the increased consumer demand, Samsung, a major player in the tablet industry, this year introduced its new generation GALAXY Tab 10.1 and GALAXY Tab 8.9 across the GCC. The launch of the new generation tablet builds on the success of the first generation GALAXY Tab which was launched in the region in November 2010. Similar to the GALAXY Tab, the new Tab 10.1 has Arabic language support and Arabic lifestyle applications developed to specifically cater to the Arab audiences.
Tablets, such as Samsung GALAXY Tab 10.1 and GALAXY Tab 8.9, are lightweight and relatively easy to carry whilst at the same time providing a new level of adaptability. Tablets can be easily adapted to suit the user’s entertainment, information, communication or work needs. Tablets combine a PC like computing experience with the mobility, connectivity and touch interface of smartphones, thereby bridging the gap between desktops and smartphones.
Enterprises, globally as well regionally, use tablets for varied purposes ranging from sales, field support, management, healthcare and more. Usage of tablets amongst regional enterprises is fueled primarily due to the growing number of powerful third-party business applications and the ability to create customized applications that cater to business’ unique needs. To cater to its business consumers, the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 and GALAXY Tab 8.9 include an industry-leading suite of solutions designed to give enterprise customers and IT managers more security. Developed in collaboration with industry-leading partners such as Cisco, Sybase, SAP and Citrix, Samsung’s enterprise mobility solutions provide flexibility and connectivity to mobile workforces, ensuring that users are able to operate more efficiently on the move.
Recently, Samsung Gulf Electronics collaborated with Sharjah Electricity and Water Authority (SEWA), a government owned utility agency in the UAE, providing it with the GALAXY Tab that will help increase the productivity and time efficiency of its workforce. Samsung also developed a customized application on its GALAXY Tabs, which would be used by SEWA officers in their day-to-day field operations, collecting and feeding data directly from the tablet onto the main SEWA server. This ensures SEWA from prevention of data loss, accurate reporting and reduced time and costs on data transfer.
Tablets have also introduced an innovative approach to learning amongst educational institutions. Tablets provide children the chance to use more advanced resources delivered by the latest mobile technology. They offer numerous benefits including applications that help them learn and practice their coursework in a fun and interactive way. While the adoption of this technology amongst schools in the GCC is in its infancy stage, the availability of new generation tablets by Samsung that tick all the right are poised to fuel demand.
Samsung’s new generation GALAXY Tabs have received an overwhelming positive response amongst its GCC consumers and to meet the unique needs of its Gulf consumers, Samsung will be soon expanding its portfolio of tablets with the introduction of yet another unique-sized GALAXY Tab 7.7. As the demand for tablets continues to grow, the outlook for this industry remains optimistic with analysts such as Gartner predicting that 294 million tablets will be sold globally by 2014.