Tablets are niche, tablets are useless, bladiblah ... lots of diminishing talk about tablets here.
Let me offer a different perspective:
I happen to be an accidental tablet user turned convinced tablet user. I got the HTC Flyer back when it's price was coming down. For programming and fiddling. I ended up carrying it with me every day pretty quickly. 1,5 years ago I replaced it with a 10" Yoga 2. Awesome device. 18hrs battery time and aside from programming and typing the best computer-stuff consumption device ever.
However, for tablets to gain attention and usage again, they need upgrades:
1.) Pen input. The HTC Flyer was sort of feasible with its pen, but not quite there yet. iPad Pro shows how it needs to be done, but those are way to expensive - an MB Air is cheaper. ... This will take another generation or two, but when we have affordable feasible pen input with that necessary maximum 20 millisecond delay, we can really start ditching paper finally and for real.
2.) Storage. The amount of storage on these devices is a joke. A tablet is also a prime media consumption device and as such should have the appropriate storage. 256 or 500GB minimum IMHO. I'm still waiting for that to happen. My trusty yoga falls short in this dept. just as much as any other old tablet for 99 euros.
3.) Battery time. The Yoga is the only tablet that is truly mobile in that regard and way ahead of anything else on the market. Way over 15hrs of uptime off the grid. Very nice and - IMHO - an absolute minimum must. Any tablet running under 15hrs should be ashamed of itself.
4.) Ruggedness. A tablet has to survive everyday use. Again, the Yoga is one of those rare exceptions, although even it could do better with an all aluminium back for sturdiness and heat dispersion. The flimsy thin apple devices aren't really setting a good example. Given, you do get a bazillion cases for the apple stuff, because Apple, but that bumps the already steep price of those by another 100 - 150 Euros. Meh.
5.) Zero-fuss file handling and transfer. Here's where all tablets, including the recent android ones, fail miserably. They all force you to go through a silly amount of hoops, half of which don't really work that well and reliably, to transfer data and files to and from them. Unacceptable. How am I supposed to accept a tablet as a serious device if this doesn't work??
6.) Repairablility. A tablet device even more than a smartphone lends itself to the idea of being opened for battery or screen replacement or storage upgrade. This needs to come before people use them for really serious stuff, no matter how powerful they are. Sturdy cases with screws and solid repairablity is what's needed.
7.) RAM. 2 gigs of RAM is silly, and that's a lot by tablet standards. 4-8gigs are minimum for a tablet in regular use and with reliable pen processing. This should be a no-brainer aswell, but tablet vendors have yet to deliver (and no, that MS tablet notebook surface thingie for north of 2000 euros doesn't really count as a tablet as an everyday everywhere universal handheld consumption and computing device)
8.) Convergence. Last but not least, tablets need to be fully ready for convergence by the next generation - that's just about a no-brainer. Apple is preparing that already in their slogans and, for once, Ubuntu & Aquaris/BQ and Remix/Jide have actually gone ahead and shown how it's done. This has to be a regular thing, also if mobile OSes are involved. I expect tablets to be way more positioned to lead the convergence revolution than smartphones. I'm sure that's going to happen within the next 3 years.
Bottom line: I love myself a good tablet (as outlined above) and I love the fact that they are basically the upgrade to books, magazines, notebooks and portable TVs/VCRs all wrapped into one. I think they shoudln't go away and have yet to reach their actual potential.
My 2 eurocents.