Canonical has lifted the curtain off of Ubuntu for tablets. What separates this OS from others is the ability to change subtle things about the UI depending on the device. Features include new side stage multi-tasking, which allows for simultaneous usage of tablet apps and smartphone apps and full encryption and multi-user logins which have always been at Ubuntu’s core. Paired with Ubuntu’s newest HUD (heads up display), Canonical has released a very clean and elegant UI that is sure to be on many tablets to come.
We first saw this line of tablets back in CES. Now Archos has officially announced that the line should be available this February to consumers. There will be 3 different tablets, the 80, 97 and 116 all ranging from 8 to 11.6 inches in screen size. While different in screen size, the specs should be relatively the same with all powered by a quad-core 1.2Ghz processor with an 8-core GPU and 2GB’s of total RAM. The screens will also be powered by IPS type technology that Archos claims will have a resolution that rivals Apple’s recent iPad.
The most intriguing of the 3 is most likely the 9.7 inch Platinum tablet. The screen size is in that “sweet spot” and offers a 2048×1536 resolution display. While it’s still less than the Nexus 10, it’s still a very high resolution. Seems like Archos is certainly stepping things up int heir tablet department. Will you be interested in giving them a shot?
After the WebOS and TouchPad failure, HP laid out of the mobile market for a while. Well, latest reports say that HP is going to take another stab at the market, but this time with Android-based tablets instead of WebOS. On top of that, they’re even considering a future Android powered smartphone, too. HP makes some pretty solid hardware, and they obviously do very well in the desktop and laptop market space, so I’m sure they’ll have a great chance to shake up the mobile industry as well.
Rumors say that it’ll be a Tegra 4 powered tablet, which has been in development since Thanksgiving of last year, so this definitely isn’t a hasty decision by HP. Hopefully we’ll hear a little more about these devices in the next few months.
Samsung is getting into a loving mood by introducing a new variation of its Galaxy Note 10.1 tablet for both Korea and additional global markets. In the spirit of Valentine’s Day, the new tablet will feature a special-edition Garnet Red color and come fired up with full LTE connectivity as well— giving customers yet another way to connect to those various 4G networks out there. Aside from the LTE chip built-in and the Garnet Red color, the tablet will pretty be identical to the original by including a quad-core Exynos chip, 10.1-inch 1,280 x 800 display, 5MP + 1.9MP FFC cameras and all those fun S-Pen bells and whistles.
There’s no word on pricing and availability of the new color variation— but we suspect that we will see something in Korea and additional markets soon… very soon.
ASUS has had no problems hitting cheap price points on their tablets without sacrificing specs. They recently launched the MeMO Pad, and at $149, it’s an extremely high quality tablet. The latest reports that are coming in say that they may try to get just a little cheaper by offering a 7 inch tablet powered by Intel’s Atom Z2420 dual-core CPU. The tablet is also rumored to pack 1 GB of RAM, a 1280 x 800 screen, and a 4720 mAh battery. If they can stuff all that into a package that costs around $100, there’s no doubt they’ll move a ton of them. It would also be a great boost for Intel, who hasn’t had too much luck getting any serious market penetration yet. Hopefully we’ll see this one (or at least some more details) within the next few months.
I imagine it’s safe to say we’re all pretty excited for whatever Google plans on doing with its second generation of Nexus 7 tablets. Full HD screen? Brand new version of Android? How about swapping out the NVIDIA manufactured processors for a Qualcomm Snapdragon chip?
Even though NVIDIA’s latest Tegra 4 chip is shaping up to be undoubtedly one of the best processors available for phones and tablets, rumors are that Google will be opting for a Snapdragon chip instead due to “competitive pricing” and easier 3G/4G integration. Basically, Google wants something cheap and simple, and that’s exactly what the Nexus 7 delivers. And with some analysts predicting Google to move 10 million Nexus 7 tablets this year, that’s quite a chunk of change coming out of NVIDIA’s pocket. If their Tegra processors average between $20 to $25 each, that would turn into over $200 million in lost revenue. Ouch.
It’s not set in stone, like all rumors, but it’s definitely going to be interesting to see what changes Google decides to make to their incredibly successful tablet.
The closer we get to Mobile World Congress, the more leaks we’re going to see, especially something as high-profile as Samsung’s Galaxy Tab lineup. Engadget’s recently discovered three new models of Samsung tablets in their user agent profiles, dubbed the GT-P3200, GT-P5200 and the GT-P8200. If Samsung follows their standard naming conventions, these will fall into the Galaxy Tab line, but there’s not much else as far as details go. The low end 3200 sports a 1,024 x 600 resolution on its screen, which is pretty lackluster, especially for Samsung. The 5200 showed a 1280 x 800 resolution, and the 8200 packed a Nexus 10 matching 2,560 x 1,600 resolution. Some leaked AnTuTu benchmarks for the GT-P8200 suggest it’ll carry a 1.7 GHz processor, would back up that extraordinary screen resolution. Like with all other rumors, though, it’s best to take them with a healthy dose of skepticism. And we fortunately won’t have to wait long to see what Samsung officially unveils next month.
One of the benefits of the Android ecosystem is that it invites hardware manufacturers to produce devices at a variety of price points, an invitation not loss on Acer. While many people focus on the high end, top-tier devices, eventually that cutting-edge technology trickles down to eventually become part of the budget tier of devices as we are seeing with some Acer hardware. According to reports, Acer is working on plans to produce 8- and 10-inch tablets running on quad-core MediaTek processors with “aggressive” price points. Readers may recall Acer showing off the Acer Iconia B1-A71 tablet at CES with a planned retail price less than $150 dollars. These new quad-core tablets from Acer will join that device for buyers on a budget. Linxian Lang, president of Acer’s Greater China unit, thinks the strategy of producing tablets across a wide spectrum of price points, including the low-end, will help Acer regain momentum in the tablet market.
NVIDIA had some pretty decent success with their Tegra 3 processor, and after CES, they’re poised to make an even bigger splash with the Tegra 4. But in a market as competitive as smartphones and tablets, where Qualcomm dominates the high end and Mediatek is slowly taking over the low end devices, it’s no guarantee that your product will sell, even if it’s the best product available on the market. NVIDIA knows this, and they’ve got a plan to stay relevant. Sources say NVIDIA will begin making reference designs for smartphones and tablets, and those designs will be licensed out to smaller vendors to actually sell the devices under their own brands. This is a great strategy for starting a strong market presence in regional markets, and it will help NVIDIA make quality tablets that can be offered at a cheap price. We’ll supposedly start to see some of these tablets pop up between May and June. Would you be interested in an NVIDIA manufactured tablet? Sound off in the comments.
So you’ve been eying a Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 7.0 tablet, but weren’t so keen on a conservative color of the device and would rather have a color with some zing? Well great you’re in luck as Samsung has announced the Galaxy Tab 2 7.0 in a garnet red color variation. This special edition color of the tablet features not only an appealing red color, but also Jelly Bean running the show, a dual-core processor and the Smart Remote App plus built-in IR Blaster, effectively turning the Galaxy Tab 2 into a universal remote to enjoy all that television content that your heart desires. Oh and best of all— Sammy is even going to toss in a matching garnet red case as part of the overall package. Not a bad deal at all.
The tablet will run interested parties $219.99 and can be found at Walmart, Amazon, Office Depot, Fry’s, Tiger Direct, Toys“R”Us and other retailers as well. You’ll find complete details and information once you hit the break for the full presser from Sammy.