"Rather than using the D pad and buttons to input text, DS owners can use the stylus to write on the DS's touch screen, which features PDA-style handwriting recognition. The browser will also feature an onscreen keyboard. " link
Sounds like the evolutionary step to PDA functionality, which leads naturally to "why doesn't Microsoft make Tablets this easy to use"
I don't know - perhaps Tablets will get different form factors all the way down to the handheld size. We already have the Motion LS800 and the Fujitsu p1510d. Windows XP is a much larger beast than the DS' operating system, for one thing. Ink-enabled application software is indeed getting better, but in the ISV world, Tablet suffers from a chicken-or-egg problem. Given the latest sales numbers, I suspect that writing Tablet applications is becoming more attractive every day.
In talking with some of our Windows Vista TAP participants, I learned that Tablets are very eagerly received among large corporations, and not just as executive status machines, but in the sales force and field engineers. While this is not scientific research, I am concluding that ink-enabled proprietary apps for form-filling and internal corporate productivity are not far off. Anything to reduce the volume and cost of documenting process on paper (think expense reporting and order forms, with their multiple signature fields) would be a welcome change, don't you think? What about Real Estate title and escrow practices? Talk about blizzards of paper!
What I know is that in one year, I have purchased twice as much software at retail $ than my Nintendo DS itself cost. Just think if we could apply that math to full Tablets! Maybe Microsoft should think about ink-enabling the Dynamics line of business software. Just thinking out loud, y'know...jumpstart the application side of the business.
Hope your Valentine's day was nice and that your President's day will be nice. I will be in the office on the 20th, testing on Touch-enabled prototype hardware.