Is your company prepared for the "year of the tablet"?

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Apple unveiled the highly anticipated iPad 2 Wednesday morning. It's thinner and lighter than the original iPad, boasts two cameras (one in the front and one in the back), and it's nine times faster than its predecessor.

Americans are on pins and needles, waiting for the March 11 release date. Yesterday, "iPad 2" quickly became a trending topic on Twitter and a hot topic on Google and Yahoo. If 2010 was dubbed the "Year of the iPad," you can expect 2011 to be the "Year of the Tablet." Apple will receive fierce competition as companies like Samsung try to improve, and revolutionize the tablet experience.

Tablet Usage Is on the Rise

eMarketer estimated in December 2010 that 24 million tablets (19.4 million iPads) would be sold in the United States this year - which is double the amount sold in 2010. In a poll conducted by Read Write Web yesterday, 60% of the respondents said they were going to buy an iPad 2, and more than 20% of the respondents said the iPad 2 will be the second iPad they've purchased.

As the popularity of the iPad 2 continues to grow, so will the need for content marketing strategies aimed at tablet owners. Brafton reported in February that online shopping, social networking, and general reference were among the fastest-growing content categories on mobile devices. Knowing this, you may want to plan new campaigns focused on users who are on the go.

A rise in the number of people carrying tablet devices will inch closer this year to the number of people lugging around bulky, heavy laptops. Delivering fresh content to tablet owners is a worthwhile strategy to implement as the iPad 2 and its competitors continue to usher in faster browsing experiences, and applications aimed at entertaining users and boosting productivity.

Tips for Developing Content

Listen to the wants and needs of your customers. Once you've done this, develop apps for the iPad 2 and Android powered tablets (like the Samsung Galaxy Tab). Although the popularity of Apple products is high, you don't want to leave your non iPad owning customers out in the cold.

Keep your editorial material and apps up to date. People on-the-go want to be in the know as soon as something happens. When they access your application from a wireless device, they expect to see new features that weren't available two weeks ago. They also expect application bugs to be fixed in a timely manner. Applications that constantly crash on mobile devices leave a bad taste in consumers' mouths. Develop a habit of producing blog posts frequently throughout the day (for users who frequently browse the web), offering promotions specifically for mobile users, and monitoring the performance of your apps.

Do you own an iPad or tablet device? How does the tablet experience differ from the PC experience? What applications would you like to see on your next tablet?




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