The hybrid-PC rationale

Windows 8 is the first hybrid OS.

Although it has been designed from the ground up to for multiple input types, supporting both touch based tablets and traditional mouse\keyboard laptops and desktops, the true strength of Windows 8 is in how it empowers hybrid PCs.

Indeed the perception of success will largely rely on the ability of Windows 8 to popularize the hybrid PC.

However this shift in computing brings with it confusion...

I've seen a lot of people questioning the rationale behind the hybrid-PC.

The comment normally goes something like this:

By trying to achieve everything Windows 8 ends up doing nothing well. Why would I want to use Photoshop on a low powered device with a 10" screen? I’d rather use my tablet as a tablet and my laptop for everything else.

The way I see it a hybrid device simply expands the functionality of a tablet.

A device like the iPad is fantastic for reading email and writing short responses, but not so good for composing longer responses. It's great for watching a TV show or movie, but forget it if someone starts messaging you at the same time. It's hard to imagine a better device for Skyping someone... but try taking notes at the same time and the experience is horrible.

With the tablet + PC configuration you are continually forced to switch between device types to avoid having a sub-optimal experience.

Will a 10" hybrid tablet offer a good solution for tasks like running code development, CADCAM, Photoshop or composing a 50 page report? Probably not. However it certainly fills in more of the functionality "grey area" between a tablet and a full PC.

Steve Jobs envisioned a "post PC" world where they would be devices akin to "cars" and "trucks". In this new world the hybrid PC offers another choice... the "SUV".