Asus could launch an Eee tablet

All eyes may be turned to Apple in expectation of the mystery Mac tablet, but Taiwanese hardware makers aren’t skipping a beat. The folks at DigiTimes have gotten word from "industry sources" that Asus is "making preparations to launch" a tablet device of its own.

DigiTimes refers to this device as the Eee Pad, saying it will have a 4" or 7" display and a blend of tablet PC and mobile Internet device functionality. "Current details of the Eee Pad suggest the product has been inspired by the rumors of Apple’s planned tablet device," the site adds. And… that’s about it as far as details go.

Taiwanese firms like Asus are no strangers to the concept of borrowing a good idea and turning it into commercially successful products, of course. Back when everyone was still excited about the One Laptop Per Child project’s famed "$100 laptop," the rumor mill suggested that original design manufacturer Quanta Computer could release a commercial version of the system for first-world nations. Just over two months later, Asus unleashed the original Eee PC netbook at the Computex 2007 show in Taipei. The rest is history.

Things are a little bit different this time, though. While the OLPC project said early on it had no plans to commercialize the XO-1, the same can’t be said for Apple and its tablet. We also keep hearing that Apple is forging distribution deals with media publishers, while we’ve heard no such rumors concerning Asus. Then again, with the latest analyst report pointing to a $1,000 price for the Apple tablet, Asus could undercut Apple without too much trouble and offer a more barebone product at a more attractive price.

Comments closed
    • SonicSilicon
    • 13 years ago

    Like other posters, I’d prefer a slate over a convertible format because of the awkwardness and flimsy feel a spin-around/hinge tends to have. It also tends to lighten the load.

    Archos has one in the works, but it seems a bit too slow for the $400+ estimated price.
    §[<http://www.archos.com/products/nb/archos_9/index.html?country=dj&lang=en<]§

    • SonicSilicon
    • 13 years ago

    Slate is a type of Tablet. Convertibles have keyboards.
    I’m still hoping for someone to repeat the Vadem Clio / Sharp Mobilon PV-6000 TriPad flip-over screen on a convertible.

    • Hattig
    • 13 years ago

    The quantity of posts on this topic shows how much people actually care about tablet computers.

    • videobits
    • 13 years ago

    You’re not alone. This would be a great move, IMHO. The hinge and internal wiring is going to be the weak point on any tablet device that flips the screen around.

    As far as keyboard goes, either USB or Bluetooth. Or even better, some interface between the keyboard on my slider phone….sweet.

    And while we’re wishing, a big rubber bumper case option for using in a real work environment.

    • Trymor
    • 13 years ago

    Thats what I have wanted for years. But, for me, I will do a little better.

    Make sure there is a built in stand to prop it up on a slight angle, and include a BLUETOOTH keyboard (possibly a chicklet made to attach/detach fully underneath the slate), or at least one as an option if the price needs to be kept down. One (aftermarket?) could even make a combo battery ‘slice’ and thin keyboard with a slot to prop up the slate with…

    Perhaps a 4″ and 7″ choice using an ARM processor, and a 10″ and 12″ using a CULV, or the Nvidia Ion platform – depending on price points.

    All capacitive multi-touch (of course) with a capacitive stylus also included.

    • UberGerbil
    • 13 years ago

    If they’re going to go with Android they should go all the way and use ARM. An x86 product would be quicker to market, but they’ve missed the end-of-year buying season anyway.

    • UberGerbil
    • 13 years ago

    Maybe I’m alone in this opinion, and it is just opinion, but…

    I don’t want a netbook /[

    • Hattig
    • 13 years ago

    Well a 7 inch EeePad could be nice if it has the battery life, the software, and the correct price.

    I guess Android would run nicely on such a device, it would be large enough for the on-screen keyboard to be useable, and the desktop widgets will work nicely, with multiple desktops – HTC’s Sense would be best.

    • Skrying
    • 13 years ago

    Weird bug… ignore.

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