Computex 2010 Preview: The Tablet Future

ASUS' Shiny New Tablets

Tablets Galore

Say what you may about Apple, but there's no denying the company's influence on tech developments. It was inevitable that Apple's iPad (2 million units sold and counting) would inspire copycats and competitors alike. Two of these would-be competitors have just played their cards today at two press events in Taiwan before the big IT show of the year, Computex 2010 kicks off.

First on our list is ASUS. If there's anyone who can replicate Apple's success with the tablet form factor, it's the Taiwanese giant which sparked the netbook craze with its Eee PC. Predictably, it's called the Eee Pad, though besides this obvious rival to the Apple iPad, ASUS has another tablet up its sleeves, the Eee Tablet.

ASUS' chairman Jonny Shih himself was there to show off his two new tablets, the Eee Pad in his left hand and the Eee Tablet in his right.  

It was a packed, captive audience, as Mr Shih went through the features of each tablet. Here, in giant size is the Eee Pad.

The home screen of the Eee Pad, which comes in two configurations, the 12-inch EP121 and the EP101TC. The larger EP121 is powered by a CULV Intel Core 2 Duo processor and will run Win 7 Home Premium. Expect to get multi-tasking and Flash support just by virtue of that. ASUS is touting more than 10 hours of continuous computing. That's one important detail that needs to be verified but if it really approaches that, it will match that of the iPad,

Browsing on the Eee Pad in landscape mode.

This appears to be an e-book library app with the covers of the books.

ASUS also has a docking station with a keyboard for those frequent moments when touch can't cut it anymore, like productivity apps. It looks to be a simple plug and play concept here.

The Eee Pad certainly looks very much like a notebook when docked.

The other configuration, the EP101TC is rather lacking in terms of its technical specs at the moment. What we do know is that it measures 10 inches, and is a mere 675g in weight and is based on Windows Embedded Compact 7. It does give us the vibe that it won't be as powerful as its larger sibling but hopefully, we'll know more soon.

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