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Clean slate

Are tablet devices going to be a game changer for lawyers in the same way smart phones have been? Damian Blackburn investigates

1 November 2010

With the recent launch of the Apple iPad, tablet computing has seemingly come of age. In the few months that they have been available, several million iPads have been sold, and a number of manufacturers have put their own variations into production.

A tablet computer is generally defined as a portable device that has a screen as its primary or secondary input. The first tablet computers were laptops with touchscreens. The screens had a swivel mechanism to allow the device to be folded through 180 degrees, leaving the screen exposed for inputting.

Despite the potential usefulness of these devices, they never really took off until the iPad landed. Apple took the imaginative leap of following the format of touch screen mobile phones rather than laptops, and this has become the format for the genre.

Apple has enjoyed a monopoly since the launch of the iPad, but all that is about to change. Several manufacturers are on the verge of releasing their own versions of the t...

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