Amazon's only begun lighting up the tablet market with its recently introduced Kindle Fire, a $199 tablet built around a heavily customized version of Android and powered by a Texas Instruments OMAP 4430 processor, but it's never too early to look ahead. Especially if you're Nvidia, which reportedly scored a deal to supply the application processor in the next Kindle Fire device.
Having trouble deciding between a notebook, tablet, or desktop PC? You're not alone, and Gigabyte hopes everyone who's on the fence about which type of PC to purchase will consider the company's new Booktop T1132, the first and only 3-in-1 notebook on the market, according to Gigabyte. The trick is in the rotatable docking station, which transforms the T1132 into all three types of PCs.
We know almost everything there is to know about the upcoming Eee Pad Transformer Prime device from Asus except for two very important things: how will it perform and when is it going to be released? Fortunately, while we don't have concrete answers to either of those questions, there are enough clues to make educated guesses about both of them, and they're both encouraging.
What could potentially be your next high-end tablet just went up for pre-order. We're of course talking about the Eee Pad Transformer Prime from Asus, a next generation slate oozing with tech sex appeal. It has an Nvidia Tegra 3 quad-core processor, for starters, along with a 10.1-inch WXGA IPS+ capacitive touchscreen display. And did someone say Ice Cream Sandwich (ICS)?
Before you go and drop a couple of Benjamins on a Kindle Fire from Amazon or $250 on a Nook Tablet from Barnes & Noble, there's something you should know. Research In Motion is slashing the price of its BlackBerry PlayBook to $199 at Best Buy, Staples, and a bunch of other popular retailers, putting it in direct competition with the two aforementioned tablets.
For better or worse, Asus has every intention of riding the growing tablet wave, no matter what else you might have heard. And what we heard earlier this week was that Asus, along with Acer, Dell, and Hewlett-Packard, were likely to bow out of the tablet market now that Amazon and Barnes & Noble have both joined the fray. That prompted speculation that maybe Asus and others were giving up competing for Android and were going to wait for Windows 8, perhaps in a mad grab for enterprise dollars. Nope, that's wrong too.
Amazon is almost certainly losing money on each Kindle Fire tablet it sells, but the dollar amount might not be as high as some analysts originally thought. According to preliminary findings from IHS iSuppli's teardown analysis, the Kindle Fire carries a BOM (build of materials) cost of $185.60 for the hardware, and $201.70 overall when factoring in manufacturing services expenses.
Computer system builders like Hewlett-Packard and Dell may look to pull out of the tablet market now that both Amazon and Barnes & Noble cannonballed the shallow end of the pool. Over in the deep end is Apple with its full-size (9.7-inch) iPad line, the only one that seems to be able to stay afloat at the $500 mark and above. Is it worth trying to compete anymore?
More good news for budget conscious tablet shoppers. For those of you who pre-ordered a Nook Tablet from Barnes & Noble, it too is shipping early, just like Amazon's Kindle Fire and Kindle Touch. The Nook Tablet was supposed to ship out on November 18, 2011 (this Friday), but will be available for pick-up from B&N stores a day early.
The Kindle Fire is already the best selling item on Amazon.com, and it's going to arrive on customers' doorsteps one day early, the e-tailer announced today. Kindle Fire shipments were supposed to go out tomorrow, but the $199 tablets are already loaded up on trucks and headed out to the their destinations, and it's anyone's guess as to why.