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2011: The year of the tablet?

New devices compete with iPad

NEW YORK -- While the release of the iPad in 2010 popularized tablet computing, 2011 may be the "year of the tablet," said Dan Woolley, a real estate technologist who moderated a technology workshop today during the Real Estate Connect conference. But the cost of the tablets -- even with more devices hitting the market -- is still prohibitive for many, said Mark Lesswing, chief technology officer for the National Association of Realtors and director of NAR's Center for Realtor Technology. "The platform itself has to come down (in price)," Lesswing said. He shared projections that suggested the price of tablet computers could sink from between $700 to $800 in 2010 to nearly $300 per device by 2014. Other data projects about 20 million tablet users by the end of this year, roughly double the number in 2010. And as more competitors to the iPad are introduced, Lesswing noted that trends in the use of smart phone operating systems may carry over into the rea...

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