Now here is a tablet device that can be considered to be the polar opposite of all the other tablet devices we have seen or heard of until now. Why? The India based tablet, iDuple, will have just one app – the web browser. There will be another unique aspect of the tablet – it would be sans a hard drive. Also featuring in the missing list is a regular operating system. However, if you think this is enough to write the thing off, well, there is an inherent advantage to such a set up – an extremely fast boot up time which the company confirmed will be just 5 seconds.
So of what good will be a tablet that has no hard drive, no operating system and can boast of just one app in the form of a web browser? After all, a tablet is used to run useful applications, store files as well as perform various other functions. Well, iDuple is claiming their tablet can also pull off all of these though the difference lies in the manner in which it is done since the tablet has been designed to connect to a remote server running a virtual operating system.
Or to put it in simple words, the OS is in the clouds, the storage space required is in the clouds, and the apps that are required are in the clouds, too. So the tablet will be able to run resource intensive applications without having any physical storage on it or a fast processor since all of this is actually taking place in a remote server. And for this, each user will be allotted 50 GB of storage in the clouds.
As for its advantages, the tablet need no longer be crammed with high end components so as to ensure decent performance, since all functions are based remotely and not on the device itself. The big plus of such a concept is how much you save, as it will be possible to produce a low cost tablet without exotic hardware. Another big advantage of the concept is that it will save users from remaining tied to a particular system, as it will make it possible for them to access their work environment from any computer with a web browser, thus making it really easy to upload or download files or make changes to your settings. In fact, with all of your details stored elsewhere, the device itself in no longer that relevant since all data will still be there even if the iDuple tablet gets lost or damaged.
However, there are several factors that might not work to the tablet’s advantage and the most important is that the tablet is only useful as long as there is constant Internet connectivity. A stable internet connection is the lifeline of the tablet and without it, it’s a dead device with no practical use. So for those who do a lot of traveling or you are in a place where the internet is still not a staple, the iDuple tablet will be just a showpiece item of no real use.
Another factor that can cast a cloud on the cloud computing concept and the prospects of the tablet is the question of security of data. Though iDuple did mention they are working to ensure security of data is never a problem, they are also offering private cloud services for business oriented requirements while making it clear privacy of data will be accorded highest priority.
Also, cloud-based operating systems, or the browser-based operating systems have never had a glorious history. We have seen how the JooJoo with a browser-based operating system fared.
These apart, there is no denying the uniqueness of the idea that can open up a whole new tablet concept. However, there are no hardware details available as yet though the company has a demo running on its official site. We do hope that the clouds clear off soon and we have a clearer picture of the entire concept.
Sovan Mandal is the senior tablet and tech corespondent for goodereader.com. He brings a international approach to news that is not just applicable to the North American market, but also Asia, India, Europe and others. Sovy brings his own writing flavor to the website and is interested in Science Fiction, Technology and Writing. Any questions, send an email