After a surprise from Andy Rubin at D:Dive Into Mobile, a tease from Motorola themselves, and many rumors surrounding it, the Honeycomb powered Motorola Xoom is finally official. Announced today at CES, the Xoom will pack a dual-core 1GHz Tegra II processor, 1GB of DDR2 RAM, and vanilla Android 3.0. The Xoom eschews the recent trend of 7-inch displays on tablets, and instead opts for a 10.1-inch 1280x800 (16:10) (gorilla glass) display, which should complement the 720P video playback capabilities nicely.
Remember back when Samsung first introduced us to the Galaxy Tab, the tablet to save us Android fans from the iPad? They promised that a WiFi-only version would eventually come out for those who didn't want to pay for another data plan.
Well today, Samsung finally announced that it will be coming to the US in the first quarter of 2011. No dates have been given for international releases, but since this is a WiFi device, it should be easy to ship it over from the US for international use.
The latest development comes from Comcast, who is, apparently, planning to bring both live and On Demand content to Android tablets (and iPads) across the nation. The company hasn't announced much yet, but from the looks of it, we can expect to see an app (or a tablet-optimized website) that will allow users to watch live news, TV shows, and movies right on their favorite Android tablet.
The idea sounds good in theory: a device that has the comfort and usability of a laptop combined with the portability of a tablet. Lenovo's LePad was rumoured earlier this year and it has finally been unveiled together with the IdeaPad U1 Hybrid Netbook partner.
The LePad comes with a customised version of Android 2.2 (called LeOS) and runs on a 1.3 GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon processor. The U1 comes with Windows 7 Home Premium and runs on a 1.2 Ghz Intel Core i5-540UM (with an i7 option).
Looks like Motorola won't be the only one showing off a Honeycomb tablet at CES 2011 - according to the Korea Times, LG plans to bring an 8.9-inch Android (2.4?) device to the infamous electronics show.
While the words "LG," "Honeycomb," and "tablet" are probably enough to excite many Android fans, the Korea Times was also able to confirm that LG will have another awe-inspiring device on display at CES: the much-anticipated Optimus 2X, better known as the world's first dual-core phone.
Onkyo has announced a brand new Froyo-based tablet that will launch in Japan. Most of the specifications seem pretty much up to par with what we expect; here's what the TA117 will come packaged with:
- Tegra 250 Chipset (1 GHz)
- Android 2.2
- 10.1-inch screen
- 1024x600 resolution
- 2 USB 2.0 ports
- WiFi & Bluetooth
- microSD card slot
- HDMI port
- 1.3MP Camera
- Either 8GB or 16GB internal storage
The only disappointing features seem to be the low-quality rear camera and the lack of a front-facing counterpart.
Like so many of you out there, I have been holding out for an Android tablet that would be well worth my saved pennies, one that I could be proud to stack up against the uppity iPad owners that loiter around the local Starbucks. I'll be the first to admit that this year has been disappointing to say the least – cancelled devices, resistive touch screens, underpowered hardware, and carrier only options have plagued the community thus far, and even while optimistic for 2011, it was clear that I needed a tablet now.
While Samsung's much anticipated 7-incher is still yet to arrive on a carrier in the USA, availability is spreading throughout Europe. Today, Vodafone Germany posted its prices for the Galaxy Tab, and they're looking pretty steep. For the proposed €729.90 ($1015), you could get not one but two nicely-specced dualcore netbooks (from Samsung!), which makes me question whether this is simply Samsung exploiting a naïve and nascent market; a price bubble which is set to burst shortly.
Take this one with a huge grain of salt: DigiTimes is reporting, yet again, that HTC is about to enter the tablet market by leveraging their expertise with Android and their relations with carriers around the world. The rumours point to a launch date in early 2011 and specs that certainly look good, but would you pay the rumoured price of $790 for it?
The claimed specs:
- 1280×720 display (from earlier reports, that may point towards Gingerbread)
- nVidia Tegra 2 SoC
- 32 GB SSD
- 2 GB RAM
- WiFi, Bluetooth, GPS
- Full Android Market
- Support for Chrome Web Apps
That Tegra 2 chipset should provide enough power to surpass the iPad and make for a very fluid experience.
Today we are getting a first look at the Toshiba Folio tablet, an Android based powerhouse that was announced at IFA 2010. The Folio looks like it will be another serious contender in what is, apparently, the fast growing market of Android tablets. Looking at its list of features, it should be nothing less than impressive. What features, you ask? How about these:
- Android 2.2 (Froyo)
- 10.1" 1024x600 display
- Front facing camera
- WiFi 802.11B/G/N
- 3G capable
- Nvidia Tegra 2 processor (Yeah, that's dual-core)
- Capacitive display with multitouch support
- USB host input(!!!)
- Price €399 WiFi / €499 WiFI & 3G
The tablet looks like it is shaping up to be an awesome device, but based on what we're seeing right now, it still has some hills to climb.