Before it shipped, a friend of mine expressed a great deal of skepticism—even hostility—about the Kindle Fire. This was right after HP had dropped their remaining stock of Touchpads onto the market for $200 each.
My buddy failed to understand two things—first, HP was abandoning the Touchpad and cleaning out their warehouses. And second, the Kindle Fire is not a tablet—it’s a low-cost content-delivery system. This is critical to understanding what the Kindle can and can’t do.
A slew of hardware makers that didn’t start out as online bookstores—including Acer, Samsung, and Toshiba—debuted 7-inch Android Honeycomb tablets just in time for Amazon’s Kindle Fire to steal their thunder. The apparent goal: to discover if anyone is actually interested in 7-inch tablets. Acer’s Iconia Tab A100 serves as our guinea pig for this form factor.
Singapore-based Suzuki Technology – not to be confused with its automobile-making namesake - has trotted out a 7-inch touchscreen netbook that can also double up as a tablet PC. Its 7-inch display can be folded in a manner so as to overlie the keyboard. The Neutron 701 MNI enters tablet PC mode once the screen is folded to conceal the keyboard.
The 701 MNI may not be for tetchy users as it features an Intel Atom Z520 1.33GHz processor, which is infamous for its lack of speed. Other notable specs include up to 4GB RAM, an Expresscard Slot, three USB 2.0 ports, 802.11b/g Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, a 1.3 MP webcam, and a quaint 56K modem. Suzuki still hasn’t divulged the price of the 701 MNI.