It's a tablet-eat-tablet
world out there, and with Apple's iPad
starting a trend that isn't likely to die throughout 2010, you can
imagine that all sorts of lesser-known contenders will be popping up with
tablets and slates of their own in order to strike while the iron is
hot. Today, Neofonie is introducing the WePad, a German-made unit that
promises "fast Internet connectivity, a complete world of ready-to-use
applications and easy access to books and photos, as well as magazines
and newspapers from various publishers via the WeMagazine ePublishing
At its heart, this is a fairly robust machine with an 11.6" display (1366x768),
a rather quick 1.66GHz Intel Atom N450 processor, a webcam (for video
chats, we imagine), two USB sockets, a flash card reader, integrated
WWAN modem, GMA3150 graphics (far better than on most e-readers) and a
battery that is said to last six hours, though that claim doesn't come with a pre-qualification of under what sort of workloads you could expect that sort of performance.
The company makes no bones about the product they are targeting,
saying that their tablet is far larger and more capable than the iPad.
There's also a set of built-in speakers here, and since it's based
around Google's open Android
operating system, applications
can be loaded on to it after purchase. Other specs include 16GB of NAND Flash
(32GB optional), a 1.3MP webcam, SIM card slot, Flash
support, access to the WePad AppStore and Google's own Android
Marketplace, multi-tasking support, Bluetooth 2.1, Wi-Fi, optional GPS,
an ambient light & motion sensor and an internal microfan to keep
On paper, this certainly looks like a legitimate iPad contender.
is a robust OS, and this expansive display will allow a lot
more action to be shown on-screen. Unfortunately, there's no solid
mention of a price or release date, so it's still stuck in vaporware status
for now. We're guessing it'll be out in a few months, but who knows how
many people will hold off from Apple's offering for that long. Let the games begin...