The Motorola XOOM: Ever since it was first teased at D: Dive Into Mobile, the Android community hasn't been able to take its eyes off the tablet's dual-core processor, gorgeous 10.1-inch display, and - last but certainly not least - Android 3.0 (Honeycomb) operating system.
Well now the device has officially gone on sale, and I've been testing falling in love with a review unit for the last few days. Typically, I end up hating devices that I adore at first blush, but the XOOM is an entirely different story - the device is far from perfect (where are the tablet apps?), but I have yet to find anything truly upsetting about it.
You thought 1.2GHz was fast? That was just the beginning. The developer of the extremely popular SetCPU app has managed to get a 50% clock speed increase out of the XOOM's dual-core Nvidia Tegra 2, bumping it up to a screaming 1.5GHz. Now, this is sort of like attaching a very large turbo to your four-cylinder hot hatch - that is, your device life may be shortened a little if you're constantly pushing it to the limits.
It's launch day for the XOOM, and already the major news outlets have had a chance to spend a few days with the much anticipated device. Not only does the XOOM bring a new standard in high-end to the masses (a la Tegra 2), but it's also the first device to ship with Android 3.0 (Honeycomb) on board. It's also really the second major Android tablet to launch (the Galaxy Tab being the first), and the first to match the 10" form factor of the iPad.
OK, so unboxings aren't exactly the most exciting videos on the web, but when they involve a certain tablet called the "Motorola XOOM," they're definitely worth a look. Such is Wirefly's latest creation:
Items of note:
Android 3.0 (Honeycomb) - boot times seem really fast
10.1-inch 16:10 display - larger than an iPad
1GHz dual-core Tegra 2 processor
32GB of internal storage
2MP front camera
5MP rear camera capable of recording 720p HD video
Interestingly, the video mentions a slot for a 4G SIM card, which is odd since Verizon and Motorola say the XOOM will require a hardware software upgrade to connect to LTE.
Sony's tablet discussions never picked up much steam. The company has tantalized the community with its intent to mash its future portables with the monster PlayStation brand, except nothing beyond the word of mouth has surfaced to show any other indication of Sony’s tablet development. Until today, that is: Engadget has finally got the scoop on a still-internal Sony tablet, dubbed the “S1.” Though some details are apparently known, no true image of the thing exists in the wild except for this mockup:
The first question: What the heck is that curve up there at the top?
Earlier today at MWC, LG officially unveiled its most powerful upcoming smartphone: the Optimus 3D. We've already heard of the Optimus 3D before, and even witnessed both decent and disastrously cheesy ads LG put out ahead of the release, but what we didn't know is that the Optimus 3D would end up being the most powerful smartphone currently on the market.
Not only is the phone powered by a 1GHz TI OMAP4 dual-core processor (which seems to be just as beefy, if not beefier than Tegra 2), but it's also the world's first dual-channel and dual-memory Android smartphone to aid those 2 cores and squeeze every last bit of juice out of them.
Yesterday's announcement by Samsung of the Galaxy Tab 10.1 might have seemed like something of an echo of the Motorola XOOM. Well, with LG's recent unveiling of the Optimus Pad at MWC, we can still see some resemblance but with a few alterations making it worthy of further attention.
First up, the Optimus Pad refrains from the somewhat popular 10-inch screen diagonal seen on both Motorola and Samsung's tablets. If you have doubts about the handiness of a 10-inch device, it seems that LG shares your sentiments: the Optimus Tab scales the display back to 8.9 inches, while maintaining a similar 1280x760 WXGA resolution.
It's pretty much universally agreed upon that Honeycomb's UI overhaul looks awesome, with its Tron-inspired holographic UI touching just about every part of the operating system. But what about the boot screen? It turns out that looks just as slick - TechCrunch managed to grab a video of it, and - despite the poor lighting - we can see that it looks nothing like previous versions of Android, which featured the Nexus "X" animation.
We've already seen a few apps shown off at Google's live Honeycomb event, including two 3D games that take full advantage of both cores on the Tegra 2 processor. Monster Madness, ported from the PS3 to Android, is a hack and slash game with amazing 3D graphics and destructible environments, while Great Battles is an epic RTS that's also called an "educational game." While that doesn't sound that cool, just take a look at the pictures of the game in action.
Let's face it: Dell's new Streak 7 isn't exactly the hottest member of the CES Android tablet litter. In fact, the seven-inch tablet's mediocre screen and disappointing performance became painfully visible, even in the short period of time we spent with it at CES.
Well now the early reviews are in - and frankly, they don't give Dell's latest entry into the world of Android much hope, despite its low price tag ($199 on contract) and dual-core Tegra 2 processor.