Microsoft, along with various hardware partners, entered the tablet market a decade ago, but it was never a big success for them. Now that the iPad has taken off, and with Android tablets also looking strong this Christmas, the New York Times has an exclusive report saying that Microsoft is about to release a series of new tablets at CES early next year. According to inside sources, Steve Ballmer will introduce devices from Samsung, Dell and others, and try to get Microsoft back in the race. However, unlike the iPad and Android tablets, they will run Windows 7 or 8, a full desktop OS, and include a slide out keyboard.
Of course the fact that they will run a full OS brings questions like how much battery life they will have. Also, some of the marketing points will be for people to "work on Microsoft Word, Excel or PowerPoint while doing work”. This seems very similar to what the UMPC and previous Windows tablets were about, and it seems like a repeat of previous attempts--including last year at CES where Ballmer announced their new tablet initiative.
Read More | New York Times
A 10-inch slate tablet seemed imminent when news broke that Dell had an iPad rival on the way, but that turned out not to be the case. The 5-inch Dell Streak was their first attempt, but ended up being more smartphone than tablet. Its second attempt—the Dell Inspiron Duo ($549.99 direct)—isn't even close. Although it is a novel take on a netbook convertible tablet, it's anything but an iPad rival. It features a cleverly designed flip hinge that exposes (and conceals) a physical keyboard, and is one of the few netbook tablets that run on an Intel Atom processor and a full blown Windows 7 operating system. Although it sports one of the most innovative designs we've seen in a while, the Inspiron Duo is no threat as a touch device to any tablet and completely misses as a netbook.
At a Rogers TabLife conference this past week David Neale from RIM provided a very interesting first look at their upcoming tablet, the BlackBerry Playbook. As he commented about the media skepticism on whether the recently announced tablet was up to par with the iPad and Android tablets, or if it even existed, he said "it does live!" The video presentation showed the fast processor, 1080p video, flash browser and multi-tasking. He also promised that the unit was not finished too and that it would be even faster. In the questions part of the interview he touched on the fact that the tablet is aimed at the "professional grade" audience. He also said security was a top concern, and that it would securely pair with BlackBerry smartphones via Bluetooth. He stated that 7-inches would be the form factor for the first instance, but that he could see more sizes coming in the future, and even devices with keyboards. Check out the video for more interesting tidbits from the 18 minutes presentation.
Read More | Vimeo
Coby has just released another Android tablet which is available now for $250. Coby’s new Android tablet, the Kyros MID7015, is equipped with a 7-inch resistive touchscreen, Android 2.1 (AppsLib marketplace only,) 4GB of built-in memory, a microSD card slot with an upgrading capacity of up to 16GB, and an HDMI port for 1080p video.
Read More | Coby
It’s no secret that Apple’s iPad is a hot-ticket item this holiday season. Though with its price of $499-$699, you better hope your secret Santa has the hots for you this year. No such luck? Well, if you’re in the UK then consider looking to Orange for a contract-tied iPad deal of the decade. That’s right, with a two-year contract of £27 ($42) per month (£25 for existing customers) you can get an iPad Wi-Fi + 3G at prices of £199 ($312) for the 16GB version, £249 ($391) for the 32GB, or £349 ($626) for the 64GB.
This two year monthly plan allows you 1GB of anytime data, 1GB off-peak data (basically between midnight and 4pm), and 3GB of BT Openzone Wi-Fi.
Read More | Orange
We have a Samsung Galaxy Tab in and wanted to give you guys a look at the first major competitor to the iPad. The Galaxy Tab is a 7-inch Android tablet available from Verizon, Sprint, T-Mobile, and soon AT&T. It sports a 7-inch display, and in all actuality, just feels like a really big Android phone. Hit the video above for the full scoop.
The line of Android-powered tablets seems to be increasing weekly, and indeed this week saw yet another contestant to the iPad being released, the Archos 101. It's a 10-inch tablet running the Android 2.1 OS, and powerful enough to play 720p video at a reasonable $299 price tag for the 8GB version, and $349 for 16GB. The main features include a capacitive touchscreen, a HDMI port, 802.11n Wi-Fi, front-facing camera, and an SD slot for more storage space.
Read More | Archos
This week, the Washington Post is the latest of the big, well known newspapers to add itself to the growing list of digital apps available on the iPad, alongside other well known names like the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, Globe and Mail, The Times and more. But are these worth your time? Do they replace their paper versions, and do they deliver a good value for the price?
While you can't really argue against the fact that the iPad has been a massive success for Apple, even outselling Mac computers last quarter, we know there are a bunch of people who write it off as just a fad and who don't really see anything special about the device. However, it's becoming increasingly obvious that Apple was on to something that goes way beyond the argument of a closed App Store and the simple OS that so many complain about.
In the video above, you'll meet a 7-year old boy named Owen Cain. Owen was born with a debilitating motor-neuron disease that has left him almost completely motionless throughout his life. Needless to say, communication for him has been difficult. Then, a nurse had him try to play with an iPad, and he was able to use and interact with the device immediately, on his own. Take a look at the video above for the
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