Skip to main content

Why the Motorola Xoom Failed

In a recent CNET article, it describes how the Xoom has had little impact on the tablet market and attributes this failure in light of the outstanding success of the iPad to the Apple Stores and their focus on the tablet.

I disagree. I think the Xoom fails because it tries to do what the iPad does but not be the iPad. It's roughly the same size and same specs and almost twice the price. Why would anyone shell out almost $300 dollars more for a product that's just a mimic of the iPad? Better to go with the original.

The only tablet that I've seen that differentiates itself from the iPad is the Galaxy Tab 7 inches. It's used in Spain's EOI (Escuela de Organizacion Industrial) a prominent Business School precisely because of one of it's advantages. It's open-source. But I'm sure the fact that it's cheaper than an iPad had something to do with it too.

The 7-inch tablet is much smaller than the iPad allowing it to be used in a more portable way. In education I think, open source has an edge, and the small size might be useful for children who may find the iPad unwieldy.

The trick for success (in the Tablet space) is not aping the iPad, but being what the iPad is not. The iPad is not perfect, but trying to copy the iPad would leave you with price as the big determinant and price, is (this time) one where the iPad dominates and probably will for the near future.

The Xoom has no chance as a would-be iPad for more money.

[Ed. This past weekend I went to Best Buy and they had the Xoom listed for $800, today  I saw it priced $600 at Staples (after I did the original post). Looks like Motorola got that it was priced to high and lowered. We'll see what happens thought I still see it as a long shot. The Xoom is too similar to be anything but an iPad wannabe for the moment.]


Popular posts from this blog

How to configure Ubuntu's keyboard to work like a Mac's

Typing accents on a PC is a complicated Alt + three numbered code affair. One feels like a sorcerer casting a spell. "I summon thee accented é! I press the weird magical key Alt, and with 0191 get the flipped question mark!" For a bilingual person this meant that writing on the computer was a start-and-stop process. With Mac's it a whole lot easier, just Alt + e and the letter you wanted for accents and alt + ? for the question mark. No need to leave the keyboard for the number pad and no need to remember arcane number combinations or have a paper cheat sheet next to the keyboard, as I've seen in virtually every secretaries computer in Puerto Rico.

Linux has a interesting approach to foreign language characters: using a compose key. You hit this key which I typically map to Caps Lock and ' and the letter you want and voilá you get the accent. Kinda makes sense: single quotation mark is an accent, double gets you the ümalaut, works pretty well. Except for the ñ, wh…

Contrasting Styles of Writing: English vs. Spanish

There is interestingly enough a big difference between what's considered good writing in Spanish and English. V.S. Naipul winner of the 2001 Nobel prize for literature publish an article on writing. In it he emphasizes the use of short clear sentences and encourages the lack of adjectives and adverbs. Essentially he pushes the writer to abandon florid language and master spartan communication. This is a desired feature of English prose, where short clipped sentences are the norm and seamlessly flow into a paragraph. In English prose the paragraph is the unit the writer cares about the most.

This is not the case in Spanish where whole short stories (I'm thinking this was Gabriel Garcia Marquez but maybe it was Cortázar) are written in one sentence. Something so difficult to do in English that the expert translator could best manage to encapsulate the tale in two sentences. The florid language is what is considered good writing in Spanish but unfortunately this has lead to what …

Fixing Autocomplete in Github's Atom Text Editor for Ruby

I really like Github's Atom Text Editor. I really like that it's multi-platform allowing me to master one set of skills that is transferable to all platforms and all machines. 

On thing that just burns me of the default set-up in Atom is the Autocomplete feature that seems to change my words as a type them. Because Ruby uses the end of line as a terminus for a statement you usually finish a word with pressing the return button and you get really annoying changes to your finished typed word a la MS Word. I find myself yelling "No that's not what I wrote!" at the screen in busy coffee shops.

I disabled autocomplete for a while but it is a very useful function. Then I found out they changed the package that gave the autocomplete to a new one called "Autocomplete Plus" that gives you more options. All that I needed to change to make autocomplete sane again:

1. Open Atom's Preferences
2. Search the bundled packages for "Autocomplete Plus"

3. Go to t…