News Update :






T-Mobile SpringBoard tablet unveiled

Monday, October 17, 2011

Today, T-Mobile announced the launch of a new Android tablet on its network - the T-Mobile Springboard and the Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1. We all should know about the Tab 10.1 by now, so we'll jump right to the SpringBoard. The T-Mobile SpringBoard is touted to be an affordable tablet that offers a premium mobile experience. It features a 7″ HD display, a 1.2GHz dual-core processor, and is capable of accessing BLOCKBUSTER on Demand, Netflix, and T-Mobile TV - perfect for your video watching needs.

It runs on Android 3.2 Honeycomb, features a 5-megapixel rear camera (720p HD video recording), a 1.3-megapixel front facing camera, HDMI output, and a microSD card slot (supports up to 32GB). With HSPA+ connectivity (marketed as 4G), this tablet is capable of downloading content as well as playing it. The SpringBoard tablet also comes preloaded with Blio eReader, MobileLife Family Organizer, Slacker Radio, and TeleNav GPS Navigator.

No word on the tablet's battery life or pricing, but it should be under $200. The T-Mobile SpringBoard will be available in time for the holidays at T-Mobile retail stores and online. Find out more.

Asus Eee Pad Transformer 2 ready to rock the UK

Are you on the lookout for the Asus Eee Pad Transformer 2? If you so happen to live across the pond, then you might be interested to know that this particular device is set to hit our friends in the UK this coming November 7th. While we know that Stateside, the price will remain the same as its predecessor, UK retailer Lambda-Tek already has set up a product page for the device, touting a price point of £537.85 for the slate.

Should you click on the “Check Stock” button, you will be greeted by a "Oops, we have run out of stock-More expected on 07x11x2011" message. Does that mean November 7th would be the date where the Transformer 2 makes it debut? Since you've already waited for so long, what is another three weeks, right?

So far there are still rumors swirling around its specifications, including a larger touchscreen display, a quad core Tegra 3 processor to run proceedings without any hiccup, 1GB RAM, 32GB of internal memory and Google's tablet-optimized Android Honeycomb operating system.

Courts Ban Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 Sales In Australia

'No, your honor, we didn't copy the iPad. In fact, we've never even seen one before.'

One thing Samsung doesn't seem to be able to copy from Apple is the success of its crack legal team. The latest court to ban the sale of Samsung's Galaxy Tab 10.1 tablet is Australia, which upheld a temporary injunction against selling the device in Oz.

Samsung's defense appeared to largely take the form of shouting “it's not fair.” The South Korean company's lawyers argued that if the tablet wasn't allowed to go on sale, it would be “commercially dead” and wouldn't be able to make any money from Christmas sales. Maybe Samsung should have thought of that before making its iClone.

According to the Wall Street Journal, “Samsung hinted it may appeal the Sydney court ruling.” “Hinted” isn't exactly fighting talk, which was reserved for the company's only real recourse — get nasty over alleged patent violations. In a statement, Samsung said “We will continue to legally assert our intellectual property rights against those who violate Samsung's patents and free ride on our technology.”

That's more like it.

The fact that Samsung is lying down quietly, and even making changes to its Tab 10.1 in order to get it back on store shelves, seems to show that courts are convinced that it has ripped off the iPad's design. That Samsung is retaliating with patent threats is even more telling of its confidence to beat these injunctions.

Apple Wins Block on Samsung Tablet in Australia [WSJ (Use Google to get around the paywall)]

Australian court upholds injunction against Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1, Apple rejoices

Today is a good day for Apple, and especially for its lawyers. A federal court in Australia has upheld the temporary injunction issued against Samsung's Galaxy Tab 10.1 down under. That effectively continues to prevent Samsung from selling the Galaxy Tab 10.1 in Australia unless the Korean company manages to win in a trial.

The culprit of course is a patent held by Apple, this time relating to touchscreen tech. This injunction will probably make Samsung miss the all-important holiday shopping season in Australia, so there may be some financial consequences for the Korean giant as well. Although, in fairness, with the teeny tiny market share that Android-powered tablets have been able to gain thus far, this is more of a symbolic win for Apple.

Still, the Apple v. Samsung battle continues. In the Netherlands, Samsung announced that it will start selling modified versions of its Galaxy S, Galaxy S II, and Galaxy Ace smartphones. These devices were previously banned from being sold in the Netherlands because they infringed on an Apple patent relating to flicking through photos (seriously). So Samsung decided to update the software, and will start selling the ‘new' smartphones tomorrow, on October 14. What's the big difference? Well, if you get one of the ‘new' devices in the Netherlands, when you touch a photo in order to flick to the next one, the photo currently on screen won't appear to ‘bounce' as it did before, rather a ‘blue glow' will appear and highlight the edge of the picture. Yeah, sounds exciting.

Samsung probably won't be able to pull off something similar with the Galaxy Tab 10.1 to get it reinstated in Australia as soon as possible, but not for the lack of trying. The company has reportedly offered to make a deal with Apple, a deal which had Samsung modify some software bits. Apple didn't want to take that deal, as it insists that Samsung's hardware is infringing as well. And Samsung may just decide to give up on selling the Galaxy Tab 10.1 in Australia, as it has previously hinted that it would do. Since the next hearing will probably only be held next year, the holiday shopping season will be gone. And in February or March Samsung is expected to unveil this tablet's successor anyway. At least now they know what to avoid putting in so as not to make Apple angry again.

Yipai C7 Android tablets are colorful

Dual-core processors for Android tablets seem to be the standard these days - even Shenzhen manufacturers have started using them in their own creations. A company named Yipai has released a new tablet called the C7, which is powered by Renesas' A9 EV2 dual-core processor. Pretty impressive for a sub $100 tablet. Other specs of the Yipai C7 include: a 7″ capacitive display, 512MB of RAM, 4GB of internal storage, a front facing camera, microSD card slot (up to 32GB), 2x USB 2.0 ports, a 4100mAh battery, optional 3G and GPS, HDMI output, and Android 2.2.

While Android 2.2 might be a turn off for some people, it is a budget tablet after all, and with any luck, users should have no problem finding a way to root the device and upgrade it with a custom ROM. The tablet will be available in eight different colors: grey, silver, purple, green, brown, yellow, blue and black. No word on whether they'll hit the US, but they definitely look like pretty decent budget devices.

Sony to release 3G Tablet S, Tablet P in Japan 28th October

If you're living in Japan, the good news is that Sony's first Android tablet offerings, the Tablet S and the Tablet P will start being offered in a 3G version come October 28th, and they will be available on Japanese carrier NTT DoCoMo. This seems to be slightly ahead of Sony's plans, which initially had the company launching 3G versions of their Android tablet offerings some time in November, but we guess this isn't a bad thing.

According to the Google translation, in order to encourage adoption of Sony's offerings, users who purchase either the 3G versions of the Tablet S or Tablet P will be receiving ¥1,040 (~$14) discount on their data plan for the first six months. Apart from the addition of 3G connectivity, everything else about the tablet appears to remain the same. Unfortunately no word from Sony on when they will be bringing this 3G goodness over to the states or the rest of the world.

Kogan announces 8″ and 10″ tablets

Budget/affordable tablets seem to be the rage these days, ranging from the $99 HP TouchPad during its fire sale, to the Aakash tablet, and Amazon's Kindle Fire. Now adding to that list is Kogan, who will be offering up two new tablets to their Agora range in the form of an 8" and 10" version.

Both models will feature similar specs, and its difference seems to be only in its display, with the 8" model featuring a 800×600 display resolution, while the 10" model with feature a 1024×768 resolution instead. Apart from that, both tablets will run on a 1GHz Cortex A8 processor with 512MB of RAM, a 2MP front-facing camera, 4GB of internal storage with a microSD card slot or memory expansion by an additional 32GB.

The Kogan 8" and 10" tablet will run on Android's Gingerbread 2.3 and they're available now from Kogan's website, with the 8" model seeing a LivePrice at AUD149 (~$152) and the 10" model costing AUD189 (~$193), which will at normal times cost AUD229 (~$234) and AUD269 (~$275) respectively.

Size Matters for Samsung's Growing Suite of Galaxy Tabs

SAN DIEGO — Samsung wants to place a different sized tablet in every pocket you've got.

You're probably already familiar with the Galaxy Tab 10.1. It's a bit larger than Apple's iPad, and best suited for the outer pocket of your laptop bag. Then there's the newly released 8.9-inch Galaxy Tab, a scaled-down version of its bigger brother. This one's good for toting in a trenchcoat or perhaps even a sport blazer. And now we have the yet-to-be-released 4- and 5-inch Galaxy Player multimedia devices, which slide nicely into a pair of jeans pockets.

Samsung's strategy is similar to RIM's with the PlayBook, and Amazon's with the upcoming Fire tablet: Smaller form factors will attract hesitant, would-be tablet adopters who haven't sprung for an iPad.

But is a small size and cheap price enough, or must companies like RIM, Amazon and Samsung offer deeper levels of product differentiation? Aside from offering a more totable form factor, the idea behind RIM's PlayBook is to attract the enterprise sector by playing up RIM's proprietary security systems and BlackBerry Messenger network — though after this week's network outages, RIM hardly still has that ace up its sleeve. Amazon, meanwhile, has an entire application ecosystem, extensive media library and its Amazon Prime service to back the Fire. In all, it's a compelling set of reasons for any tablet newcomer to play with Fire, so to speak.

The Galaxy Player devices are interesting, though don't seem very compelling compared against their competitive set. They're essentially Galaxy S2 smartphones without the whole phone part. In other words, they're the Android equivalent of the iPod Touch. So here's my question: In a market where iPods are going down in sales with the rise of smartphones, why launch a media player? Are people willing to carry two devices, if not more? Microsoft doesn't seem to think so.

And then we have Samsung's not-so-alluring pricing tiers. Despite its reduction in size, the Galaxy Tab 8.9 costs only $30 less than the Tab 10.1, down to $470 and $570 for respective 16GB and 32GB options. Similarly, the Galaxy Players cost $230 and $270 for the 4-inch and 5-inch versions, respectively. Compared to the iPod Touch, however, the Galaxy Players offer less bang for the buck. For $300, you can pick up a 32GB iPod Touch. The 5-inch Galaxy Player costs a bit less at $270, but comes with just 8GB of storage. If storage isn't important to you, Apple offers an 8GB iPod touch for $200, while the 4-inch Galaxy Player is $230.

Samsung needs to do more with its devices than just switch up their measurements. The adage may be tired, but rings more true than ever: Size may matter to some, but it sure as hell isn't everything.

Dell looks to Windows 8 tablet

Windows 7 might be top dog at the moment, but when it comes to Windows 8, there is still very little that we know about it. We do know, however, that Dell is part of the plan where Windows 8 is concerned, especially since the computer company is working on a tablet that will be able to support Windows 8. At this year's Dell World in Texas, Michael Dell mentioned to journalists of his company's plans to work on Windows 8-powered tablets. For those who still have memories of the Android-powered Streak, it seems that Dell worked on that in order to "see customer reaction and behavior." No idea on whether that is just a way of being gracious with their commercial failure (it wasn't all that bad a tablet, really, it is just that the rest of the public never really warmed up to it). Read what Dell had to say about Windows 8 and their future tablet.

We are very aligned with Microsoft around Windows 8. You'll hear more about Windows 8 from us and see a wide range of products released.

Does this complete set of solutions include a Windows 8 tablet that will be able to fly off store shelves – whether they are virtual or not? Only time will tell I guess, right now, everything is just rhetoric and we will look forward to the Dell Windows 8 tablet's development with great interest.

Apple granted Galaxy Tab 10.1 injunction in Australia

After a long and drawn out legal battle that stretches back to August, Apple has been granted an injunction that will prevent Samsung from launching its Galaxy Tab 10.1 tablet in Australia. The Sydney Morning Herald reports that Justice Annabelle Bennett today said that Apple had a ‘prima facie' case that Samsung had infringed two of its patents relating to touchscreen technology. This means that the dispute will go to trial, with a full hearing expected sometime in the new year.

Last week, Samsung offered Apple a settlement that would see the company release a modified version of the Galaxy Tab 10.1. However, Apple turned down the offer, insisting that the modified version would still infringe upon one of its patents. Following Apple's decision, Samsung said that, unless it could launch the tablet in time for the holiday shopping season, the Galaxy Tab 10.1 likely wouldn't make it to Australia at all. The company said that the Christmas season was too important to miss and said the tablet would be ‘dead' by the time it reached the market.

“Samsung will continue its legal proceeding against Apple's claim in order to ensure our innovative products remain available to consumers,” the company told the SMH.

Samsung and Apple have been locked in legal proceedings since April of this year, when Apple accused the South Korean company of ‘slavishly' copying the iPad and iPhone. Samsung in turn counter-sued, alleging that Apple was infringing on some of its mobile patents. The two are engaged in law suits in numerous countries around the world.

Panasonic Unveils Business-Oriented Tablets for Japanese Salarymen

Panasonic Japan has announced two new Android-powered tablets that cater to the local market. The Panasonic BizPad JT-580VT comes with a 7-inch LCD screen, while the JT-581VT has a 10.1-inch LCD. Both tablets run on Android 3.2 and are tweaked for enterprise users.

The tablets are ruggedly-designed, making them withstand against accidental drops, dust, and water. Panasonic claims the larger of the two tablets can absorb drops from as high as 80 centimeters, while the smaller one can handle 120 centimeters.

Both devices also feature an ARM Cortex-A9 dual-core processor, 1GB memory, 16GB flash, an NFC reader, a replaceable battery, Bluetooth 2.1, a USB port, GPS, microSD slot, and even infrared.

The 7-inch model (pictured) weighs just 400 grams comes with a 1024 x 600 resolution screen, optional 3G, a 5-megapixel camera, and WiFi. It is expected to go on sale in December. Meanwhile, the 10-inch tablet comes in at 700 grams and features a 1280 x 800 resolution screen, a 1.3-megapixel camera, and WiFi. It will go on sale in January 2012. No word yet on whether the BizPads will be sold outside Japan.

Wopad V7+ Android tablet unveiled

It was only earlier this week when we revealed the unofficial Angry Birds tablet, the V7 from Wopad. Well it looks like the tablet's manufacturer has got another one up its sleeve, this time it's the Wopad V7+. Looking similar to the V7 on the outside, it features a host of improved components on the inside. The Wopad V7+ packs a 1.3GHz processor, a 7″ (800 x 480) capacitive display, 512MB of RAM, 4GB of storage, and a 1.3-megapixel front facing camera.

3G, HDMI output, two mini-USB ports, WiFi, Bluetooth, GPS, and Google apps (i.e. Android Market, Google Maps etc), HDMI output, a microSD card slot, and a 3200mAh battery wrap things up to give us a fully featured Android tablet (unfortunately it's only running Android 2.3 Gingerbread instead of Honeycomb). No word on pricing for the tablet but we probably won't see it on this side of the world.

Motorola Xoom Family Edition announced, will be available at Best Buy on October 16 for $379

Motorola has announced a new Android-powered tablet today. The Xoom Family Edition, for that's what it's called, isn't an entirely new device however. It's basically the a Wi-Fi-only Xoom with half the storage and some kid-specific apps and tweaks. That said, Motorola is careful not to position it as a device solely intended for kids, highlighting that the tablet is ready for more serious, grown up stuff as well. Hence, Family Edition.

Still, the biggest advantage that the Xoom Family Edition has isn't in its specs, or its kid-specific additions. It's the price. The Xoom Family Edition is set to become available at Best Buy (which will sell it exclusively) this Sunday, on October 16, for just $379. That's a pretty good price for a 10.1-inch Honeycomb tablet, especially considering that the original Xoom was way overpriced for the first few months of its shelf life.

So, the Motorola Xoom Family Edition has a dual-core 1 GHz Nvidia Tegra 2 processor, 1 GB of RAM, 16 GB of internal storage space, a 5 MP autofocus rear camera with LED flash and 720p HD video recording, and a 10.1-inch 1280×800 IPS touchscreen. The tablet runs Android 3.1 Honeycomb, and comes with $40 worth of apps preinstalled. Alongside those you can find Zoodles, the Kid Mode app, Motorola's MotoPrint and MotoPack, Quickoffice, Asphalt 6, and SIM City Deluxe.

Kindle 3 gets software upgrade, ready to soar into the cloud

Amazon has pushed out a new update for the Kindle 3, now operating under the alias of the Kindle Keyboard. This gives the well-buttoned e-reader access to some of the cloud features found on its freshly unboxed younger brother, and includes the ability to view any archived documents, notes and highlights you've added to that intangible pile of books and articles. You'll need to tether the Kindle to your PC, point your browser towards Amazon, and download the file corresponding to the right region and model.

How would you change HP's TouchPad?

Not like it matters much now, but hey - why not, right? HP's TouchPad was tossed into the closeout bin just over 40 days after it initially went on sale, and it actually served to be a spark for the eventual webOS fire that still seems to be smoldering. When we tested it - and before we knew HP was about to demolish its operating system in the consumer realm - we found tons of promise. That said, we also found lackluster hardware and a relatively barren application store, but we held out hope that the latter would blossom. These days, our readers are using fire sale TouchPads for all manners of tasks, but if you had the chance, how would you change yours? Toss in a different CPU / GPU? Give webOS the overhaul HP never did? Swap Touchstone for Qi? Let us know in comments below - those who need to hear, will.






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