I’m glad to see tablets proliferating, although I have yet to “test drive” one which has a comparable feel, user experience and app selection to/as the Apple iPad. Yesterday in Independence Mall just outside Kansas City, I was interested to see Pocketbook tablets for the first time. These tablets were most notable for their prices: All under $200.

http://www.pocketbook-usa.com/

According to the sales rep I spoke with, this is the first U.S. retail outlet for Pocketbook. The English Wikipedia explains Pocketbook International started in Ukraine, is incorporated in Hong Kong, and has its US headquarters in Overland Park (a suburb of Kansas City.)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/PocketBook_Reader

2 of the 3 devices I examined Friday were eBook readers similar to the Kindle or Nook. These use eInk and are monochrome. One was color and runs Android.

While I am happy to continue using and enjoying my iPad, I recognize the development of tablet alternatives like the Pocketbook is essential for the eventual commoditization of tablet technologies in the classroom. Digital touch devices should become (and eventually will become) like pencils in today’s 19th century schools.

For more of my thoughts of the commoditization of digital devices, see my past posts:

http://wfryer.wpengine.com/2010/01/28/google-docs-is-not-clunky-old-pc-software/

http://wfryer.wpengine.com/2009/10/01/apple-ipad-rumors-netbooks-and-co…

http://wfryer.wpengine.com/2009/07/27/thoughts-on-macs-and-netbooks/

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