Chris Anderson: The Tablet is Going to Sell ‘Millions’ in Its First Year

The iPad has had a lot of naysayers since its unveiling in January. Wired editor Chris Anderson isn’t one of them. Tablet devices are going to sell “millions” in their first year, he told the American Assocation of Advertising Agencies in San Francisco today, and tens of millions in subsequent years. “The world is finally ready for a light, long-battery life, slim device on which you can live your life.”

He pointed to three main trends:

  • With the proliferation of the iPhone, people are becoming used to using their mobile devices for a range of things they previously could only do on a computer.
  • The proliferation of the Kindle shows that people like devices that make the acquisition of content more convenient. “The Kindle is not a better way to read a book,” Anderson said. “It’s a better way to get a book.”
  • As people store more and more of their content out on the cloud, new devices don’t need to be as powerful as before.

    And here’s the real test, Anderson said:

    Every time I go on a business trip, I ask myself: “Is this trip where I don’t take my laptop?” As my phone becomes more and more powerful, that becomes a valid question: Can I actually run my life on my phone? And the answer has been: Not quite yet. I’m still taking [my laptop] in case I have to write long emails or I have to do a lot of Web browsing.

    The tablet, with a bigger screen and a bigger virtual keyboard—or a bluetooth keyboard if you want—and a really good Web browser and all the connectivity you’ve come to expect with the phone, [increases the chance] that I won’t take my laptop. I’ll take my phone, and I’ll take my tablet, but I won’t take my laptop.