Laptop Thoughts: News & Reviews on Laptops, Netbooks, Slates, and More.

Be sure to register in our forums and post your comments - we want to hear from you!

Android Thoughts

Loading feed...

Windows Phone Thoughts

Loading feed...

Digital Home Thoughts

Loading feed...

All posts tagged "android"

Monday, October 18, 2010

Commentary on the Competition from Infinite Loop

Posted by Michael Knutson in "Apple News" @ 11:00 PM

"The first 15 minutes of Apple's earnings call today were not all that surprising, although the numbers were impressive. Quarterly revenue at the end of the company's fiscal year (late September) was $20.34 billion, making this the company's biggest quarter ever. This exceeded analyst expectations and predictions, so big score for Apple. Then things got really interesting when Steve Jobs got on the call and started ripping his competitors a new one."

Let's see, biggest quarter ever, yet, there's still plenty of time to bash the competition, rather than graciously bask in the glow of spectacular financial results (Thank you consumers, you've voted with your wallets! ). I don't quite understand what benefit is derived from publicly pointing out the obvious - see! we sold more stuff than you sold. And, despite the fact that the competition in the tablet space doesn't have real products shipping in meaningful number yet (at least here in the US), we're told that they'll be inferior, and that the small size will be a disadvantage unless fingers can be made smaller. I read that, and thought, gee, I'd better get rid of my iPhone then, because I don't have sandpaper to make my fingers smaller. I love Apple products, because, as Steve J points out,"they just work," but I'm not real happy with the whole "cult of personality" that seems to be developing and causing bad feelings in the industry. All the sniping between CEOs is getting old! Just build the products and let the consumers decide.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Archos Android Tablets Now Have A Real Marketplace

Posted by Hooch Tan in "Android News" @ 10:30 AM

"Our biggest complaint about the variety of Archos tablets? The lack of the Android Market, of course. But while you've been able to sideload the Market apk on lots of these devices, there were apparently compatibility issues with Archos' new Android 2.1 / 2.2 tablets (like the Archos 32 we reviewed just a few weeks). But fear not: ArchosFans to the rescue!"

There may be a huge range of Android tablets and phones out there right now, but a depressing amount of them have been castrated by the lack of access to the Android Market. Some companies have tried are are trying to go their own way, such as Archos, Verizon, etc. However, those attempts find a much more limited selection of tools and toys. Part of what has made the iPhone the success that it is now is the app store. A simple, central location to get new programs and games and a fart app for any occasion. Without the Market, I find any Android device a lot less compelling to own. How about you? Is access to the Android Market a consideration when you get an Android based phone or tablet?

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Be Prepared To Welcome Your Android Overlords

Posted by Hooch Tan in "Android News" @ 03:30 PM,+and+Updates)

"Apple seems pretty confident that they are going to keep the iPad at the top of the tablet market well into 2011. We know otherwise, but so does Gene Munster who is a Senior Research Analyst with Piper Jaffray."

Let us gaze into the Mystical Silica Ball and guess what the future holds in store. Hearing estimates and predictions from industry experts has always been entertaining. The interview did produce one nugget of information that I would apply to the whole tablet market, and that estimates can be hit or miss, not just for Asian production lines, but for estimates in the technology industry. Apple has certainly brought attention and revived the previously stagnant tablet market and in doing so, has turned everyone's focus on slates. Android certainly seems the next most suitable OS and will likely sellore units. I am not sure if that can be considered dominance though. Whether slates have fundamentally changed the PC market, well, those words were also said about netbooks and then smartphones. Technology is certainly moving fast, but I have doubts as to whether consumers are able to keep up with the pace that manufacturers want us to move. Do we really need to buy a new computing device every year or two?

Thursday, September 30, 2010

7-Inch Nationite Rocktab Android Tablet Starting at $129

Posted by Michael Knutson in "Other Slates & Tablets" @ 12:00 AM

"For those who think most high-end Android tablets seem way too pricey, but still like the idea of having a tab around, the entry-level Nationite Rocktab may prove to be an acceptable alternative with its modest $129.50 price tag (2GB model)."

Another in a series of modest but inexpensive tablets with a 7-inch resistive WVGA screen, this Android 1.5 (ouch!) device is available in 2, 8 or 16GB of storage, 128MB RAM, a Rockchip RK2808 600MHz processor, trackball, accelerometer and Wi-fi. Maybe a good entry-level device for Android newbies!

Friday, September 24, 2010

Android Tablets Coming Soon to a Store Near You

Posted by Hooch Tan in "Laptop Thoughts News" @ 08:00 AM

"This report doesn’t come from one of our usual suspects in the tech blog word but the good folks over at Appolicious had a conversation with a T-Mobile rep. The most worthy note here, if this report is to be believed is that T-Mobile have an Android tablet available before the Christmas holiday. What’s more interesting is that this report coincides with our inventory sheet leak yesterday showing off the LG Optimus T which some of our readers believe is an Android tablet."

With slate tablets being as hot as Georgia asphalt these days, it is no surprising that companies are exploring the possibility of adapting the Android OS to the tablet form factor. While some say that Froyo may not be the ideal candidate, Android 3.0 is coming along and manufacturers such as HTC and Motorola will try anything for a piece of the tablet pie. I find it interesting that at least with the North American market, it looks like there will be two main categories of tablets to choose from. Generic, multi-purpose tablets that can be had from PC companies such as Dell and HP, and then those that will be tied to telecommunication carriers. Carriers must be salivating at the revenue potential of these babies. Not only will people be tied to their carriers owing to hardware limitations but with separate app stores like Verizon's V Cast's proposed app store, they stand to make a considerable amount of money. It does not seem that the strangehold that carriers have in the United States and Canada will not be loosened anytime soon.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Official Samsung Galaxy Tab Promo Video

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Other Slates & Tablets" @ 09:30 PM

"[The] Samsung Galaxy Tab is loaded with superb cool features, and is going to give the iPad a real tough fight. The widgets interface is specifically neat! The video shows other features, all titled under the "It's Go Time" slogan."

So, where does the Samsung Galaxy Tab fall on your "Want" list? High up? I really like the size - I think it's a logical bump up from a smartphone, but not as gigantic as an iPad.

Friday, September 17, 2010

LG Tegra 2-Powered G-Tablet Details Emerge

Posted by Jon Westfall in "Android Slates/Tablets & Accessories" @ 01:00 AM

"A little over a week ago I was in Berlin lamenting that many of the sweet tablets on display were not coming to the U.S. yet, maybe ever. ViewSonic's ViewPad 10 and 7 were among them, but the company had some good news for us today. We got a sneak peek at another of the company's 10-inch slates, the ViewSonic G-Tablet. This one is definitely coming out in America, hitting shelves in late October. This won't be an online-only, no touching before you buy tablet. The company plans to sell it through outlets like Costco, Sam's Club/Wal-Mart, Radio Shack, Sears, etc. The list hasn't been finalized yet, but you get the idea. This is a tablet meant for the masses. On the other hand, a $529 MSRP (lower street) for a 10-inch tablet is pretty steep when you consider the Archos 101 will start at $399. Is this high-powered slate worth the premium?"

A little on the pricey side, but if you're a fan of LG's you might want to check out this recently released information on the upcoming G-Tablet.

Monday, September 6, 2010

ViewSonic ViewPad 10 With Windows and Android Coming Soon

Posted by Michael Knutson in "Other Slates & Tablets" @ 09:30 PM

"Today we had more hands-on time with ViewSonic's other exciting new tablet, the ViewPad 10. That's the dual Windows 7/Android slate I mentioned yesterday. For a Windows slate it has some pretty impressive specs. And just as with the ViewPad 7, ViewSonic avoids the mistakes that hindered other similar devices we've seen this past year. But is it awesome enough to compete with the iPad or Toshiba's Folio 100?"

The ViewPad 10 (10-inch screen) seems to be destined to be one of several 'business-class' tablets soon to be appearing on the scene. Details are a bit sketchy at this point, but the demo system was running Windows Home Premium 32, with full touch capabilities, and the Android version is 1.6, apparently the latest version supported by Intel. The tablet uses an Intel Atom N455 processor with a 16GB SSD, so performance promises to be at least equal to a comparably equipped netbook. Weight is 1.6 kg (3.5 pounds) so this is no lightweight tablet, but the form factor should allow it to be easily carried. Availability is 'soon' for Europe, and 'unknown' this side of the Atlantic, and price is estimated to be 549 Euros.

Friday, September 3, 2010

Archos Android Tablet Line Up

Posted by Chris Gohlke in "Archos Tablets" @ 03:00 AM

""How do you tablet?" Oh yes, that's Archos' new tag line when it comes to its growing number of Android tablets. Good timing since, you know, it just went ahead and released a quintuplet of new gadgets. The offerings range from small PMP-like devices with 2.8- and 3.2-inch screens to higher-end 4.3-, 7- and 10.1-inch tablets. All will ship with Android 2.2 "Froyo" and will include accelerometers, while only some have capacitive touchscreens, front-facing cameras and 1GHz processors."

OK Archos, it looks like you've got the hardware down. The 7" tablet is at a price point I'm comfortable with. But, I'm spoiled. At this point, I'm going to require the Android market on any device I buy. So, this leaves me with fingers crossed that Gingerbread opens up the market to tablet devices.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Please Welcome Android Thoughts to the Thoughts Media Network

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Thoughts Media Status Updates" @ 02:30 PM

I'm thrilled to announce the newest member of the Thoughts Media family: Android Thoughts. As you can guess, this site will be covering Android in all it's forms - phones, slates, etc. The site is being led by none other than our very own Jon Westfall; he'll be handling all editorial duties on the site, similar to how Apple Thoughts works. Android has exploded in popularity over the past 12 months, surpassing even the mighty iPhone in terms of daily activations according to some. It made sense to cover Android as part of what we do here at Thoughts Media, but I wanted to find someone who was passionate and interested in all things Android...and that person is Jon Westfall. Please go read his welcome message on the site to find out how Android Thoughts was born - and subscribe to the RSS feed and Twitter stream. And, above all, if you're interested in Android as a platform, contribute, share, comment, and become a part of that new community.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Android Tablet Prototype Costs $50 per Unit

Posted by Chris Gohlke in "Other Slates & Tablets" @ 08:30 AM

"Sure, the government of India thinks it can produce a Google Android tablet that will cost just $35 (when you order a million units), but Indian company Allgo has designed a prototype that is says could be built for just $50 — without requiring a government-sized order to bring costs down."

These kind of numbers really don't surprise me. Given that the US retail cost for the Augen tablet was $150, these prices don't seem too far out. Given that a tablet device can be made at such low price points, I wonder if an Android based iPod touch like device will also be forthcoming at a low price. Something dirt cheap with the ability to run apps and access the internet would certainly have a market.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Thoughts on the Augen Gentouch Tablet

Posted by Chris Gohlke in "Other Slates & Tablets" @ 07:00 AM

So, after a good amount of hunting, I finally managed to acquire the Gentouch Android tablet. There have been some mixed reviews on the web and The Yaz posted a very nice analysis in our forums. So, after a few days of using the device I'm going to give you my thoughts. Overall, I think it is a pretty good device, but I don't think a lot of users are going to be disappointed with it in its current form. Read on to see why.


Tuesday, August 17, 2010

An Early Review of the Dell Streak

Posted by Michael Knutson in "Dell Streak" @ 09:30 PM

"The Dell Streak is born into a hardware environment that desperately needs an Android-based tablet-or any kick-ass tablet that doesn't run Apple's "stop it now before it borgs the free world" iOS. Our current tally shows no fewer than 30 touch-operated tablets that could be launching in the next six months, and the majority of this freshman class of iPad killers will probably be running Google's mobile operating system."

This review rates the Streak as an average tablet, but as a pretty darned good (if huge) Smartphone. Simply holding the Streak up to an ear takes the author (and me) back to the early days of mobile phone bricks - it's really big. Using it as a tablet, some of the oft-described software quirkiness makes for a less than stellar experience, for example, web browsing on this 5-inch screen using the smallish on-screen keyboard. On the plus side, comparing the Streak to some typical Smartphones, its feature-set scores well.

I thought about getting a Streak, but rumors of upcoming models with larger screens (also from Dell) have convinced me to wait. That, and the fact that I need a tablet computer that runs Excel and Word ... meaning Windows in some flavor.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Asustek Readying Several (Android and Windows) Tablets

Posted by Michael Knutson in "Other Slates & Tablets" @ 08:30 AM

"Asustek Computer plans to launch its first tablet device with Google's Android mobile operating system in March, the company's CEO said Friday. The Android tablet will be the third in the Eee Pad family and will cost less than US$399, said Jerry Shen, CEO of Asustek, speaking to reporters after the company's second quarter earnings conference.

"Asustek will launch its first tablet device in December or January, a 12-inch touchscreen tablet that will cost around US$1,000, Shen said. What makes the device more expensive than, say, the iPad, is that it comes with a docking station that transforms it into a laptop computer ... The device, officially called the Eee Pad EP121, has Microsoft's Windows 7 Home Premium operating system and an Intel Core 2 Duo processor inside."

The competition is heating up! Of particular interest to business users may be Windows versions that may allow "enterprise-class" applications. Also mentioned is a version with a 10-inch screen that runs Windows Embedded Compact 7 software, that ships without a docking station and should be priced between $399 and $499. Of course, a lot may change in the upcoming months, but the future looks bright for tablets!

Dell Streak Arrives ...

Posted by Michael Knutson in "Dell Streak" @ 08:00 AM

"We fit the whole world into a 5-inch screen. Introducing the Dell Streak. The perfectly-sized, go-anywhere entertainment, social connection and navigation device."

The ordering process is open today for "pre-registered" users, and begins tomorrow (14-Aug-2010) for everyone else. Prices start at $299.99 USD with AT&T two-year contract activation, or $549.99 USD without a contract and without accessories. The Streak can be purchased without a contract. The voice plans start at $39.99 USD monthly for 450 "w/Rollover" minutes, the data plans start at $15.00 USD monthly for 200MB of data, and the 2GB plan will cost $25.00 USD monthly. No unlimited data plans are available on new contracts.

Reviews on Dell's site are mostly from UK users, but are generally positive. Plusses include Web browsing, the high quantity and quality of Android apps and screen size and clarity; minuses mostly surround battery life, the old Android version (1.6), and speaker quality. There are also lots of comments about this device being perfect in size between an iPhone and an iPad, and lots of comments from "switchers." Can't wait for some more local reviews to start appearing!

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

$35 Android-based Tablet in India - A Real, Working Prototype

Posted by Michael Knutson in "Other Slates & Tablets" @ 01:30 PM

"The Gadget Gurus, the Subcontinent's answer to The Engadget Show, got a special hands-on with that $35 Tablet PC the world's been buzzing about -- delivered by none other than India's Human Resource Development Minister, Kapil Sibal himself. While constantly referring to "the $35 laptop" (we guess you could hold it in your lap) Mr. Sibal gave us the following info: it sports 2GB RAM, WiFI and 3G, microSD storage, and it runs the Android OS."

Pretty amazing! India plans to use one million of these devices -- delivered in 2011 -- initially in their higher educational system. The $35 cost is that charged to the Indian government and any retail pricing would presumeably be higher. Already some discussions have taken place (OLPC Association/Nicholas Negroponte, Microsoft) regarding making this a "world tablet," and not limiting it to India. Minister Sibal's goal is to get the price down to $10 each. Looking at the video, this is a real device, on real hardware, running Android and "off the shelf" apps. The guys at Gadget Gurus spent two hours trying to crash the tablet, and didn't succeed. Their verdict: good quick hardware and software with a mediocre touch screen requiring use of a stylus for some functions. My first thought was that this just looks like a larger Nokia N900. But it is still a remarkable achievement!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Dell Streak Priority Pre-Sale Ordering Begins August 12, 2010

Posted by Michael Knutson in "Dell Streak" @ 02:00 PM

"Orders for the Dell Streak Tablet open up for U.S. priority pre-sale registrants at this Thursday, August 12. General availability follows a day later at The Dell Streak is available for $299.99 with new two-year AT&T contract†, and $549.99 without. Customers who purchase the Streak, and signed up during the pre-sale program, will receive a free second-day shipping upgrade. Customers who redeem their pre-sale coupon can purchase a Plantronics Bluetooth earpiece for 99 cents while supplies last."

image credit:

Delayed a couple weeks in the USA, ordering for the Dell Streak opens on August 12, 2010 for priority pre-sale registrants (click here to pre-register), giving you a 24-hour head-start on the general public. Lots of buzz about this 5-inch tablet -- shipping with Android 1.6 but expected to be upgradeable to Android 2.1 -- coming in the near future. Let the competition begin!

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Dual-boot Windows 7 / Android AOD255 Netbook from Acer

Posted by Michael Knutson in "Acer Laptops & Netbooks" @ 03:00 PM

"Acer's latest crack at combining Google's Android mobile software and Microsoft's Windows XP OS in the same netbook was unveiled at a computer show in Taipei on Thursday."

Details are a bit sketchy at this point, but Acer has unveiled the AOD255 netbook in Taipei, with their own configuration management software (Acer Configuration Manager for Android) allowing a quick boot into Android, or a 'regular' boot into Windows XP. Interesting that Linux QuickBoot systems are being started to be replaced by Android.

The device sports an Intel Atom N450, 1GB of DDR2 RAM, a 10.1-inch screen, a 160GB hard disk, and a 3-cell battery (a 6-cell upgraded battery will set you back $95). Basic price is expected to be around $375 and availability is yet to be determined.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

A $99 Android Netbook

Posted by Chris Gohlke in "Other Laptops & Netbooks" @ 07:00 PM

"So, is the GenBook worth your $100? Depends on what you need this thing for -- it's alright for looking up a quick Website here and there, and we assume if you can get some light apps running on it, it could be a decent single-function device. However, if you're looking for something that can provide decent video playback and be more of a multitasker, it's probably best to save up an extra $100 and get something a bit more substantial (like a bona fide netbook)."

This is the same company that is bringing you the $150 Android tablet I reported on yesterday. This one fares poorly in the review and I'm hoping it doesn't reflect on the quality of the tablet (although it probably does). I'm still keeping my fingers crossed since the tablet supposedly has Android 2.1 as opposed to 1.6 on this and more horsepower. Otherwise, this really is similar to what Asus first offered in the original Eee at a fantastic price point. With some fine tuning, it could still be a winner. Still, I've got to ask, where the heck did this company come from?

Thursday, July 22, 2010

A Winning Streak for Dell?

Posted by Michael Knutson in "Dell Laptops & Netbooks" @ 07:00 PM

"How does a PC maker entering the smart phone space for the first time make a splash? Make a device so large other people can't help but ask "What the heck is that?" To be fair, Dell positions its new 5-inch Streak as a tablet that happens to make calls. But that hasn't stopped people from comparing it to a waffle or a Pop Tart (it's bigger than the latter) while holding it up to their head. The good news is that the Streak is a well-designed slate, complete with a front-facing camera for video calls, and it's the first Android tablet that can access the Android Market."

This tablet is definitely an enigma. It's getting lots of press, despite the fact that it's coming to market being powered by an old version of Android, and has hardware that is not yet being fully utilized or exploited. As an integral part of Dell's future mobile strategy, one can only hope that updates will be fast and furious, and that content will be available for the 5-inch screen. If not, it may unfortunately end up as more of a blur than a streak.

Reviews & Articles

Loading feed...


Loading feed...

Reviews & Articles

Loading feed...


Loading feed...

Reviews & Articles

Loading feed...


Loading feed...

Reviews & Articles

Loading feed...


Loading feed...

Reviews & Articles

Loading feed...


Loading feed...

Sponsored links