HP announces webOS TouchPad tablet

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Feb 092011

As expected, one of the products unveiled today at its ‘Think Beyond’ press event was its first webOS tablet. The HP TouchPad will be the “first in the webOS TouchPad family.”

HP TouchPad

HP TouchPad specifications:

  • Processor: Dual-core 1.2GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon APQ8060
  • Operating system: webOS
  • Connectivity: Optional 3G and 4G
  • Other connectivity: A-GPS (3G models only), 802.11 b/g/n Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 2.1+EDR
  • Input: Software keyboard
  • Display: 9.7-inch XGA multi-touch
  • Memory: 1GB RAM
  • Storage: 16 or 32GB options
  • Camera: Front-facing 1.3MP
  • Battery: 6300mAh
  • Connectors: Charger/microUSB connector, 3.5mm headphone/microphone jack
  • Other: Beats audio
  • Dimensions / Weight: 240 by 190 by 13.7 millimeters (9.45 by 7.48 by 0.54 inches) / 740 grams (1.6 pounds)

HP plans to release the TouchPad this summer. Pricing information was not revealed.

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HP files more potential tablet name trademarks

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Jan 262011


Four recent USPTO applications by HP may shed some light on what HP will end up call its forthcoming webOS tablets. Last year, we learned that HP had file an application for “PalmPad.” You can now add “HP Duopad,” “HP Touchslate,” “HP Touchcanvas,” and “HP Touchpad” as possible options.

Considering that HP is only expected to unveil two tablets, the Topaz and the Opal, for now, it appears that the company has yet to make a final decision on branding. Some names could also be reserved for other future tablets.

HP is expected to unveil at least one and perhaps both tablets at a February 9th press event.

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Apple counting down to 10 billion App Store downloads

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Jan 172011


Apple has begun counting down to the 10 billion downloads milestone in its iOS App Store.

As of today, nearly 10 billion apps have been downloaded from the App Store worldwide. Which is almost as amazing as the apps themselves. So we want to say thanks. Download the 10 billionth app, and you could win a US $10,000 iTunes Gift Card. Just visit the App Store, and download what could be your best app yet.

The Apple App Store was launched in July 2008. It took about a year to top the first billion download mark.

As I write this, the App Store download counter stands at 9.865 billion downloads.

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CES 2011: T-Mobile USA announces Dell Streak 7 tablet

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Jan 092011

Dell Streak 7

T-Mobile USA earlier this week announced the Dell Streak 7, its first 4G tablet (the T-Mobile G-Slate will come out after it). As the name implies, it is a larger device than the original Dell Streak which comes with a 5-inch display.

Dell Streak 7 specifications:

  • Processor: Dual-core 1GHz NVIDIA Tegra 2
  • Operating system: Google Android 2.2 with Dell Stage UI
  • Connectivity: HSPA+
  • Other connectivity: GPS, 802.11 b/g/n, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 2.1+EDR
  • Display: 7-inch WVGA capacitive touchscreen with Corning Gorilla Glass
  • Storage: 16GB or 32GB onboard and SD cards up to 32GB
  • Camera: Rear-facing 5MP and front-facing 1.3MP
  • Battery: 2780mAh
  • Dimensions / weight: 199.9 by 119.8 by 12.4 millimeters / 450 grams

The Dell Streak 7 will land at T-Mobile USA “in the coming weeks.” Pricing information was not disclosed.

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CES 2011: Sprint to offer 4G version of BlackBerry PlayBook

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Jan 062011

RIM PlayBook

Research In Motion today announced a new BlackBerry PlayBook tablet model offering 4G connectivity for the Sprint network. It is the first model to be announced to come with wireless connectivity.

“RIM believes a significant portion of the tablet market will want a higher performing, multitasking, professional-grade tablet and that is why we chose to design the BlackBerry PlayBook for premium performance with a powerful dual-core processor and multitasking OS. Together with Sprint, we are now building on that performance advantage with 4G and providing an unparalleled mobile experience for users,” said Mike Lazaridis, President and Co-CEO at Research In Motion.

Other specifications are expected to be the same as those announced back in September.

Sprint is expected to begin offering the 4G BlackBerry PlayBook this summer. Pricing information will be released closer to launch.

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CES 2011: Asus announces four tablets

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Jan 042011

CES 2011 may not have officially begun but the product announcements have begun in earnest. ASUS today unveiled a Windows tablet as well as three Android tablets.

Described as “the most powerful tablet ever introduced,” the Eee Slate EP121 will be powered by an Intel Core i5-470UM processor and Windows 7 Home Premium. It will come with a 12.1-inch IPS display (1280 by 800), up to 4GB RAM, 32GB or 64GB SSD, 802.11 n Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 3.0, a 2MP camera, 2 USB ports and a mini-HDMI port. It will also come with a Bluetooth keyboard. It should be available later this month with a price starting at US$999.

ASUS Eee Slate EP121
ASUS Eee Slate EP121

The Eee Pad MeMo will be powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon processor and Google Android 3.0 (Honeycomb). It will come with a 7.1-inch capacitive touchscreen display, a stylus pen, and a micro-HDMI port.

ASUS Eee Pad MeMo
ASUS Eee Pad MeMo

The other two Android tablets, the Eee Pad Transfer and Eee Pad Slider, will both come with NVIDIA Tegra 2 processor, Google Android 3.0, 10.1-inch IPS touchscreen displays, a rear-facing 5MP camera with LED flash, and a front-facing 1.2MP camera. The Eee Pad Transfer will come with a docking option with built-in QWERTY keyboard while the Eee Pad Slider will feature a sliding keyboard and optional 3G connectivity.

Note also that Asus referred to Honeycomb as Android 3.0 rather than 2.4 as recent rumours suggested.

ASUS Eee Pad Transformer
ASUS Eee Pad Transformer

ASUS Eee Pad Slider
ASUS Eee Pad Slider

The Eee Pad Transformer to be available starting in April with prices ranging from US$399 to US$699. The Eee Pad Slider will follow in May with prices ranging from US$699 to US$799. The Eee Pad MeMo will be available in June with prices ranging from US$499 to US$699.

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LG to unveil 8.9-inch tablet at CES?

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Dec 312010

The Korea Times is reporting that LG will unveil a tablet of its own at CES 2011.

According to the Korea Times’s sources, the LG tablet will come with an 8.9-inch display, placing it squarely between the Samsung Galaxy Tab and its 7-inch display and the larger Apple iPad with its 9.7-inch display. It will likely use Honeycomb (Android 2.4?), the upcoming version of Android with tablet enhancements.

LG’s dual-core smartphone, the Optimus 2X is also expected at the show. If so, hopefully LG will reveal which North American carriers will offer it.

The report also suggests that Samsung will unveil new versions of its Galaxy Tab and Galaxy S smartphones at the event.

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HP to unveil PalmPad at CES 2011?

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Dec 212010

FoxNews.com is reporting that HP will unveil its Palm tablets (codename Topaz) at CES 2011. A number of new details have have also been revealed.

As rumoured, the tablet will be known as the PalmPad. Three models will be unveiled but will only be distinguished by unspecified “minor hardware differences.” All three will run a new version of webOS (version 2.5.1). Screen size is not finalized but should be close to the 9.7-inch of the Apple iPad. At least one will come with WiMAX 4G connectivity for Sprint, both a rear-facing 3MP camera and a front-facing 1.3MP camera (both with LED flashes), a USB 3.0 port, and a mini-HDMI port.

Size-wise, it should be slightly thinner than the iPad with softer edges. Weight is expected to be around 0.57 kilograms (1.25 pounds).

Rumoured Palm PalmPad

Supporting earlier rumours, FoxNews.com reports that the PalmPad should be available in March 2011, .

A fourth version of the PalmPad is also expected. This student version will not be shown off at CES and is expected to have a smaller 8.9-inch display.

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Google previews upcoming Honeycomb-powered Motorola Tablet

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Dec 072010

As expected, Andy Rubin, VP of Mobile Platforms at Google, took to the stage last night at the D: Dive Into Mobile conference. While Google had announced the Google Nexus S earlier in the day, Rubin had a surprise of his own: A preview of Motorola’s Honeycomb-powered tablet.

Rubin did not share a lot of details but did indicate that it will be powered by a dual-core NVIDIA processor and Honeycomb. Rubin also confirmed that Honeycomb will introduce new functionality specifically for tablets. For example, the tablet version of GMail will have two columns (a list of your emails and the currently selected one) whereas the phone version will continue to use the single column layout.

Part of his demo was done with a new version of Google Maps (featuring vector-based graphics) that should be out within days.

Rubin provided no details as to when Honeycomb and the Motorola tablet will hit the street.

New evidence of multiple upcoming webOS devices?

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Nov 082010


There is new evidence that gives credence to earlier rumours that HP was planning to release five or six new webOS devices in 2011. Folks over at WebOS Internals have dug through the webOS 2.0 Doctor tool (which allows webOS device ROM restorations) and found some codenames hinting at future devices. Aside from roadrunner (now known to be the Palm Pre 2), they found references to devices known as broadway, windsor, mantaray and stingray.

The broadway, windsor and mantaray are also mentioned in something called the “A6UpdateStage”. It’s not clear what this is but it could be a hardware reference.

There is no new information as to when we could see these devices.

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Samsung Canada launches Samsung Galaxy Series with Faber Drive concert

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Oct 302010


Samsung Canada earlier this week introduced a number of new devices, the Galaxy S Captivate, the Galaxy Tab, and the Windows Phone 7 Samsung Focus, with a concert featuring Canadian band Faber Drive.

Once in, I expected to find the new devices available for us to play with or on display at least. None were in sight (or were they hidden away in the VIP area?). While I waited for the devices to make an appearance, I caught up with a few familiar faces.

An hour went by before Raj Doshi, Vice President of Mobile Product Management at Rogers Communications and Paul Brannen, Vice President at Samsung Mobile Canada, took to the stage to say a few words. Sadly, there was no information about release dates but there was a promise that devices were being shown off by staff in white. I looked around and did not see any.

By the time Faber Drive hit the stage, there was still precious little evidence of any of the devices. I finally noticed one or two Captivates (or perhaps Vibrants as it was quite dark and difficult to tell) but many more BlackBerry devices. And finally some Tabs started showing up in the crowd.

I ended up spending a few minutes with one but conversation with the Samsung rep was difficult as Faber Drive was playing only feet away. My first impression was that the Tab felt like an oversized smartphone. It was odd at first to see a smartphone OS on a larger device but I liked the familiarity that it brought. The Tab’s performance was pretty and applications seemed to scale well to the higher display resolution (but I only tried a few).

Unfortunately, the Canadian version will only support data plans and no voice plans. There is hope though (if I heard correctly): Samsung Canada could release an update to enable voice services should Canadian carriers express such an interest.

While Samsung definitely knows how to throw a party (remember the Metric show this past summer?), I wish that they would give a bit more attention to their devices. Here are a few pictures of the event:

The Venue: The Courthouse
The Venue: The Courthouse in Toronto

Faber Drive at Samsung Galaxy Series Launch
Faber Drive

Faber Drive
Faber Drive

Samsung Galaxy Tab spotted at last
Samsung Galaxy Tab spotted at last

Samsung Galaxy Tab headed to multiple carriers in Canada and US

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Sep 162010

Samsung GALAXY Tab

Samsung today announced at an event in New York that its Galaxy Tab is headed to a number of US carriers. AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile and Verizon Wireless will all offer the tablet in the next couple of months. Samsung Canada also confirmed that it was headed to both Bell Mobility and Rogers Wireless later this year.

“The addition of Galaxy Tab to the Galaxy product portfolio is a powerful proof point of Samsung’s commitment to bring new and innovative mobile experiences to Canadian consumers,” said Paul Brannen, vice president, Samsung Mobile Canada. “The 7-inch display and thin, lightweight design, combined with premium content and productivity tools makes the Galaxy Tab a true mobile tablet that is as comfortable to use standing on a crowded train as it is relaxing on the couch at home.”

Samsung GALAXY Tab specifications:

  • Processor: 1GHz Cortex A8 with PowerVR SGX540 GPU
  • Operating system: Google Android 2.2
  • Connectivity: Quad-band GSM/GPRS/EDGE and tri-band HSUPA/HSDPA
  • Other connectivity: GPS, 802.11 a/b/g/n Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 3.0, DLNA
  • Input: Software keyboard
  • Display: 7-inch LCD touchscreen WSVGA display
  • Memory: 512MB RAM
  • Storage: 16GB or 32GB options / microSD cards up to 32GB
  • Camera: Front-facing 1.3MP webcam / rear-facing 3MP with auto-focus and flash
  • Battery: 4,000mAh
  • Dimensions / Weight: 190.1 by 120.5 by 12 millimeters / 380 grams

Samsung also revealed that many Android applications will scale to the Tab’s 1024×600 display. Non-scalable applications will be framed and centered on the screen at an 800×400 resolution.

Individual carriers will reveal specific pricing and availability details.

Samsung Galaxy Tab pricing to start at US$200?

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Sep 032010

Samsung GALAXY Tab

One key question that went unanswered yesterday as Samsung unveiled the Samsung GALAXY Tab was the cost. With no official pricing, rumours are filling the void with quite a range of answers.

Some rumours suggest prices as high as 699 euros with tax (about US$900) for the 16GB version and even higher for the 32GB version. For example, Expansys is currently listing the 16GB model for £679.99 (about US$1050).

A report in The Daily Mail suggests instead that, according to Samsung product executive, prices could start between US$200 and US$300 albeit with a wireless contract. The same report cites other "company officials" suggesting a price of £200 (about US$310).

Samsung, care to settle this?

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ViewSonic announces Android 2.2 ViewPad 7

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Aug 312010

ViewSonic ViewPad 7

Just ahead of the IFA tradeshow, ViewSonic Europe today announced the ViewPad 7 tablet.

“We are proud to announce another world first at Viewsonic. 3G phone functionality combined with dual cameras gives the ability for use of Android apps to use augmented reality or video calling on the move with the benefit of an excellent 7″ screen” says Derek Wright, European Product Marketing Manager. “The ViewPad 7 is aimed at users who require the ‘always on’ connectivity they are used to from a mobile phone with a more agreeable screen size for longer term use.”

ViewPad 7 specifications:

  • Operating system: Google Android 2.2
  • Connectivity: 3G
  • Other connectivity: A-GPS, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth
  • Display: 7-inch capacitive LED touchscreen
  • Storage: microSD cards up to 32GB
  • Camera: 3MP rear-facing and VGA front-facing
  • Connectors: USB

According to Engadget, the ViewPad 7 is essentially a rebadged OlivePad with 600MHz ARM processor and a display running at 800 by 480.

The ViewPad 7 is expected to start shipping in October and will sell for “no more than £350" (about US$540).

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Samsung launches Galaxy Tab teaser site

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Aug 242010

Samsung has quietly launched a teaser site for the Galaxy Tab tablet. The video confirms a few details including Android 2.2, the 7-inch display, HD movie playback, e-reading support, the SWYPE software keyboard, and more.

All should be revealed on September 2nd, 2010 in Berlin, Germany.

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