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Dell Reports Drastic Profit Drop: Will Tablets continue to Outperform Traditional Laptops?

Is Dell's drop in profits indicative of the the death of traditional laptops?  Yesterday one of the world’s leading laptop manufacturers, Dell, reported a 79% drop in their profits for the first quarter of the financial year. Dell’s experience stands in stark contrast to that of key tablet manufacturers, (among them Apple and Samsung.) As IDC, (a global provider of market information) notes, shipments of tablet devices have continued to surge, totalling 49.2 million units in the first quarter of 2013. (http://www.idc.com/getdoc.jsp?containerId=prUS24093213 ) Dell has been attempting to compensate for its poor performance in the computer market by providing its customers with other products such as business software and hardware for servers. The future of the laptop industry   Traditional laptops vs. tablets   Is Dell's attempt to branch out into other services a sign of the future? Despite the recent development of a broad variety of hybrid laptops by a number of key manufacturers, (including Dell,) the future of the laptop industry seems less than certain. Will traditional laptops soon be devices from a forgotten era? Does the future belong to the tablet and touchscreen technology? Are we witnessing the end of one age and the beginning of another? Analysts suggest that one of the only ways key laptop manufacturers will be able to compete with  tablet devices is by designing an affordable, easily portable machine with excellent all round specifications.If such a product were to appear, perhaps the computer industry could be reenergized. Which do you prefer: the traditional laptop or the tablet?