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Summary:

Many on Capitol Hill are becoming fans of Apple’s iPad. Some view it as a way to replace the antiquated technology in D.C., as well as the stacks of paper and enormous binders of legislation. Some think it will have an bigger impact than the BlackBerry.

I’m not sure what’s behind our politicians’ sudden attempts to get hip to the latest technology, but I am all for it. After clamoring for Skype, it seems many on Capitol Hill have become fans of Apple’s iPad. They include folks such as Representative Darrell Issa (R- CA) and Zoe Lofgren (D-CA), and many others:

“This thing is the bomb,” said [Utah Rep. Jason] Chaffetz, who carts his mid-size tablet everywhere but the House floor, where technology like laptops is still banned. “It’s light; it’s portable. It’s accessible information. I love it.”

Apparently some view the iPad as a way to replace the antiquated technology in D.C., as well as the stacks of paper and enormous binders of legislation. Politico says the iPad could have an impact bigger than the BlackBerry. As our own Mathew Ingram quipped to me in an email, “So now they can fiddle with their iPads instead of paying attention to what they are voting on :-)”

Now, I’m not sure if that’s really going to happen, but using new technology is a step in the right direction. And an iPad fanboy myself, I can’t find fault with our politicians seeing the light.

In a related note, a research report from IDC says that the growing popularity of the iPad is going to help jump-start the demand for media tablets.

According to a new forecast from International Data Corporation (IDC), worldwide media tablet shipments will grow from 7.6 million units in 2010 to more than 46 million units in 2014, representing a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 57.4%. In comparison, IDC expects 398 million portable PCs will be shipped in 2014.

IDC defines media tablets as tablet form factor devices with 7-12in. color displays. They are currently based on ARM processors and run lightweight operating systems such as Apple’s iPhone OS and Google’s Android OS. This distinguishes them from tablet PCs, which are based on x86 processors and run full PC operating systems.

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