The Consumer Electronics Show debuted several new products meant to whet the appetites of electronic lovers everywhere. In 2010 the hot item was iPad the first widely successful consumer tablet. If 2010 was the dawn of the tablet then 2011 might be the beginning of its reign. Several manufacturers released sneak previews of their tablets — many that run on the Google supported Android operating system.
Plenty of companies are issuing products to challenge the dominance of the iPad. Some of the companies, including Motorola and Samsung, are major players in the consumer electronics market. Even with major companies backing entries into the tablet market competitors to the iPad face an uphill struggle. Even tablets that can meet and exceed the performance of the iPad must overcome the massive head start that the iPad enjoys on cornering the market. The word iPad has come to represent the tablet technology in the eyes of most consumers. Getting a head start on the marketplace has served Apple well with other technologies.
The iPod has been on the market for nearly a decade. Even though other companies have attempted to issue their own MP3 players none have been able to seriously challenge the position of the iPod. Creative Labs, Microsoft and Sony have all failed to gain a foothold in this market. The iPod has a powerful secondary market of hardware, software and services that are attached to it. Consumers are as attracted to familiar services such as the iTunes store as they are to the actual iPod.
Apple faces plenty of competitors in the tablet market, but the company appears to be in a strong position to maintain its market share. Apple enjoys the strong advantages of product awareness, a massive marketing budget and a powerful supporting system of products and services that will ensure that the iPad will remain a leader on the tablet market for years to come.