New Intel tablets could slow iPad enterprise appeal

Tablets with Intel's Oak Trail chips could find a niche in companies using the Wintel platform

Tablets based on Intel's first dedicated tablet processor may not be a monster hit among consumers like Apple's iPad, but they could find adoption in enterprises, analysts said this week.

Apple's iPad is the poster child, but Intel's Oak Trail processor could bring a new wave of tablets that are more closely aligned to security, software and hardware needs in enterprises, analysts said. By supporting the Windows 7 OS, Oak Trail tablets will blend more smoothly than the iPad into IT environments relying on Windows.

Tablets with Intel's 1.5GHz Atom Z670 processor from Fujitsu and Motion Computing went on sale this month and start shipping in June. Fujitsu is taking orders for the Stylistic Q550 Slate PC tablet, which is priced starting at US$729. Motion Computing is taking orders for the CL900 Tablet PC, which is priced starting at $899. The business tablets come with Microsoft's Windows 7 OS and include solid-state drive storage. Intel has said 35 devices based on the Oak Trail chip will become available starting in May.

Apple may be spurring consumer tablet innovation, but computing needs are very different in the corporate world, said Stephen Baker, vice president of industry analysis at NPD. Outside the Apple ecosystem, there is a whole world of corporate applications and computing needs driven by Windows, Baker said.

"Products like these [tablets] will do well because Oak Trail provides a better experience for the user on a familiar platform, bridging the gap between corporate products and consumer ones," Baker said.

The iPad 2 has an ARM processor and offers outstanding power efficiency and performance features, Baker said. But for enterprises, iPad's software and hardware compatibility issues are more concerning than speed or battery improvements.

Oak Trail tablets differ from the iPad on hardware features, but provide the same level of comfort and compatibility for businesses that depend on a suite of applications they have developed, Baker said.

There is growing interest in the iPad in the enterprise, but Oak Trail tablets could also be a feasible alternative for enterprises concerned about security and application compatibility issues, analysts said.

"There's a security story that plays well in corporate. IT managers will be much friendlier to a Windows tablet than to an iOS one," said Roger Kay, president at Endpoint Technologies Associates. "Windows tablets will likely appeal to commercial customers, who, for compatibility reasons, want to stay with Windows," Kay said.

The Fujitsu and Motion Computing tablets offer Trusted Platform Management 1.2 (TPM), a hardware-based cryptography and authentication technology to enhance tablet security. Intel has also said future tablet chips will include VPro technology to remotely manage and disable tablets.

The Fujitsu tablet reflects the positioning pursued by Intel and Microsoft where tablets qualify as "companion" devices that complement smartphones and traditional PCs, said Charles King, principal analyst at Pund-IT.

"The primary target markets are largely businesses dependent on Windows that want devices which support commonly used IT management and processes, and easily synched with Windows business applications" King said.

Intel has said that device makers will ultimately release Oak Trail tablets based its Meego and Google's Android 3.0 operating system code-named Honeycomb. But Oak Trail tablets face a tough challenge against Apple's iPad in both the consumer and enterprise markets, King said.

"Whether they can make a successful run at the iPad is anyone's guess. Right now, Apple looks virtually bulletproof," King said.

Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags Applemotion computinghardware systemstablet PCslaptopsFujitsuintel

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Agam Shah

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Essentials

Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive

Learn more >

Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop

Learn more >

Mobile

Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive 

Learn more >

Exec

HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450

Learn more >

Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones

Learn more >

Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards 

Learn more >

Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive 

Learn more >

Budget

Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga 910

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?