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.

Apple Newton MessagePad (1993)

The Apple Newton launched in1993 with great fanfare. It was the device that helped coin the acronym "PDA", and aimed to redefine personal computing. It didn't go so well. Its initial launch was plagued with complaints about price ($700 at launch), weak battery life (four AAA batteries!) and handwriting recognition software that didn't always work. The negative perceptions were hard to shake. Steve Jobs, not around during the Newton's development, was famously not fond of the device. He killed it when he returned in 1997 and applied the Newton lessons to the methodical development of the iPhone and iPad.

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