In Pictures: The evolution of the tablet PC

We live in explosively innovative times for tablet computing and mobile apps. But it didn't all happen overnight. Most attempts to build a tablet-like computer, going back to the '70s, were not successful. Yet every failure was a lesson learned that led us to the iPad. Here's a look back at how the modern tablet came to be.

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AT&T EO Personal Communicator (1993)

The EO PC was AT&T's venture into the fledgling personal digital assistant (PDA) market. The device was created by GO Corp., which was acquired by AT&T mainly for its PenPoint operating system. The $2,500 pen-based device was jam-packed with ports and features, which may have overwhelmed business customers. It contained I/O ports for a modem, parallel, serial, VGA out and SCSI, and came with a wireless cellular modem, a built-in microphone and a free subscription to AT&T EasyLink Mail for both faxing and e-mail. The EO PC never reached mainstream use and was shut down in July of 1994.

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