Dell stopped selling tablets in favour of “2-in-1” devices, a move which also ends its foray into the Android market.
In a blog post, Kirk Schell said that convertible devices are “starting to become the preferred device for those in the workplace who occasionally want to operate the device in tablet mode, which is why we’re continuing to invest in the space, while beginning to divest from the slate tablet market”.
While Dell is hardly at the top table in the tablet market, the move nonetheless reflects the competitiveness of the space. While tablets and 2-in-1s could reasonably be seen as an extension of the PC business, the top three vendors (according to IDC figures for Q1 2016) are Apple, Samsung and Amazon, which have more of a consumer background.
Dell is now shifting its focus to larger screen (10-inch to 13-inch) devices with a “laptop-first experience with the convenience of a tablet when needed”. And rather than Android, this will be powered by Microsoft’s Windows 10.
The computer maker has had a somewhat chequered history with mobile products, having previously offered tablets (such as its Streak device) and smartphones using the platform, all of which failed to generate much traction.
Existing customers of Dell’s Android-based Venue line will no longer see any further OS upgrades, although it will continue to support active warranty and service contracts until expiry.