Category: Tablets

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Leicke Chinfai Bluetooth keyboard works on the Archos 5 Internet Tablet with Android

Posted by Charbax – March 2, 2010

Chinfai, distributed by http://leicke.de in Europe, sells this rollable Bluetooth keyboard which I am testing with my Archos 5 Internet Tablet in this video. It seems to work great.

Exclusive video: Archos 7 Home Tablet released for $179

Posted by Charbax – March 1, 2010

Check out my exclusive video of the Archos 7 Home Tablet that will be released in April/May for $179 in the USA and 149€ in Europe:

It is powered by a 600mhz Rockchip 2808 processor, does web browsing pretty well (for an ARM9 processor) and plays all video codecs at up to 720p video playback (at up to limited 2500kbit/s bitrates for 720p).

For now, this Archos 7 Home Tablet is being released this next month or by May already and at this amazingly low $179 price for the 2GB version with MicroSD card slot. There will also be a 8GB version and maybe larger capacities for slightly more expensive. It also has a mini-jack to composite video-output using the headphones jack and micro-USB to USB host features built-in. The built-in stereo speakers are very decent for movie watching and the 7" 800x480 resistive touch-screen is just very fine and does allow for fast text input.

Archos is still working on the Android software optimizations, it comes with special video player, audio player and file explorer applications by default. My guess is that the Google Marketplace could be hacked to work onto it by the open development community at http://forum.archosfans.com

Also, my expectation is that Google will release an Android 2.2 or so version which will provide the full Google Marketplace experience on all large screen Android Tablets and even on Android Laptop form factors and also to provide such for lower cost platforms than the latest ARM Cortex based ones. See my interview with Andy Rubin and Eric Schmidt about those speculations: http://armdevices.net/2010/02/22/i-interviewed-eric-schmidt-and-andy-rubin-at-mwc-off-camera-for-now-watch-eric-schmidts-keynote-video/

Here are some pictures of this device (click to see full sized version on Picasa):
Archos 7 Home Tablet with Android Archos 7 Home Tablet with Android Archos 7 Home Tablet with Android Archos 7 Home Tablet with Android Archos 7 Home Tablet with Android Archos 7 Home Tablet with Android Archos 7 Home Tablet with Android

You can discuss this video at http://forum.archosfans.com/viewtopic.php?f=59&t=31278

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Texas Instruments 65nm OMAP3430 vs 45nm OMAP3630

Posted by Charbax – February 23, 2010

Atul Aggarwal, Director of Product Marketing at Texas Instruments, explains the performance difference between the OMAP3430 and OMAP3630 series of processors at Mobile World Congress 2010 in Barcelona.

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Texas Instruments talks about Archos at Mobile World Congress 2010

Posted by Charbax – February 23, 2010

Ameet Suri, Strategic Marketing Manager at Texas Instruments, explains some of how Texas Instruments is working with French company Archos on powering the awesome Archos 5 Internet Tablet series running Android, what kind of work goes into it, he tells a bit about how TI supports Archos and how Archos innovates in the industry.

Full disclosure, I am a huge fan of Archos and have been for years and I also run the biggest Archos forum community at http://forum.archosfans.com

netbooknews.com: Dell Mini 5 demonstration

Posted by Charbax – February 23, 2010

This is Dell's 4.8" capacitative Android Tablet with built-in 3G. From the video, it sounds like this Dell Android tablet might be much more expensive than the Archos 5 Internet Tablet with Android which is available since October 2009 for $249 in Radio Shack. No confirmation in this video about video codecs, bitrates playback, though it is said it will have HDMI output through a dock. Thus from this video, we can't know if full DivX video playback, full MKV H264 high profile video playback is supported at high bitrates through that HDMI output and on the LCD. No information if it will come in several different capacities as Archos comes from 8GB to 500GB using a 2.5" hard drive.

Posted by netbooknews.com

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I interviewed Eric Schmidt and Andy Rubin at Mobile World Congress (off camera), for now watch Eric Schmidt’s keynote video

Posted by Charbax – February 22, 2010
Image representing Eric Schmidt as depicted in...
Image by Eric Schmidt / Google via CrunchBase

I am still slowly uploading my remaining 10-15 videos from Mobile World Congress to Youtube, as Internet upload speeds using Swisscom ADSL in Switzerland also are absolutely terrible, where uploads get disconnected all the time, I have to resume an FTP upload 100 times over many hours uploading with an average of 10kb/s and I have to ask someone else somewhere else to be nice enough to upload them to Youtube for you during these next few days.

After the Google keynote on the third day of Mobile World Congress, I was lucky to speak with Andy Rubin product manager at Google of the Android project of which I got several very interesting replies off camera to several of my Android related questions, until I also got to ask Eric Schmidt a couple of questions while he was walking with his team including Google President of Product Management Vic Gundotra to a secret meeting with secret people (that I didn't try to guess who were) in a secret room behind the scenes of the keynote area:

Charbax:

- How soon are we going to see the Android laptops?

Eric Schmidt:

(big smile, everyone in the Google team around the CEO laughs, and looks at me like I know something)

- This is certainly a possibility.

Charbax:

- What do you think about Windows Phone 7 Series?

Eric Schmidt:

(another smile and laugh from himselft and the Google team)

- I would have to say No Comment on this one.

Charbax:

- Do you think it's bloated?

Eric Schmidt:

(smiling)

- No comment

What I take from those answers, mostly from what I saw in the faces of Eric Schmidt and his team, is that Android in ARM powered Laptops certainly is one of Google's next big projects although the big tagline of his whole keynote speech was "Mobile First". I would guess probably that Laptops and Tablets may be supported by Google with one of the next versions of Android. This is also the kind of confirmation that I got speaking to Andy Rubin in the following interview. This is not word for word what he said, he wouldn't or couldn't let me film him answer my questions, this is kind of what I remember him answering:

Charbax:

- Do you know the Archos 5 Internet Tablet? (I show mine to him)

Andy Rubin:

- Yes I know it. It's nice.

Charbax:

- When are we going to see official Android Marketplace support on such kinds of devices that for example don't have 3G and only have WiFi and also introduce a few new hardware features such as larger screens and Laptop form factors?

Andy Rubin:

- While we were initially asking manufacturers to stay within our hardware requirements and guidelines, we are also definitely going to be supporting Tablets and Laptop form factors as well soon.

Charbax:

- Can Chrome browser run within Android, and if it could, what would need to be done in terms of software engineering to make that work on Laptops and Tablets with WVGA or higher resolution screens.

Andy Rubin:

- Both Android and Chrome are open source, and we have released the Native Android SDK, so any developer could certainly try to port the Chrome browser for Android. But the Chrome browser is more adapted for larger screens such as laptops. It does make sense.

Charbax:

- When are we going to see Android phones sold unlocked below $200? I was the one to falsely circulate the rumor (which though I didn't present as a rumor but more as a Wish in a simple comment) of the $199 unlocked Nexus One pricing.

Andy Rubin:

- Even for the Nexus One, we are not the ones setting the price. (I don't know if he simply meant HTC is setting the price or if someone else at Google is setting the price. And I didn't manage to ask if Google is making a large share of the profit margins on selling Nexus One unlocked or on contracts or if Google "only" makes about the same margin as any other reseller.)

That's it, I didn't really present myself as a video-blogger/press/journalist directly to Eric Schmidt in the brief few seconds that I was able to talk to him and I didn't want to slow them down as I somehow got to be somewhere back stage where I was not really supposed to be. I left my business card to the press relations Google lady asking if there was any way for me to be allowed to Interview Google Engineers in a video for my video-blog about my Android and Chrome related questions.

I was politely contacted the same evening by a Google UK press representative telling me that "Thanks for our interest in doing a videoblog here at mobile world congress. I'm afraid that we don't have the resources to do on-camera interviews this year. Apologies for any inconvenience."

No problem, it was fun just to speak with Andy Rubin for a few minutes and to Eric Schmidt for a few seconds.

You have to consider that some of the leaders of the telecom industry were probably in the audience at that very packed keynote room at Mobile World Congress. I did find it slightly fun when some people (possibly with an agenda) did ask quite harsh questions to Eric Schmidt when there were some minutes for the Q&A, for example Danish Analyst John Strange asked if Google was trying to turn the Telecoms into dumb pipes when they rather would want to be intelligent pipes, which fueld several replies from Eric Schmidt and further discussions on the matter also when a Dutch Analyst asked if Google wanted to "steal the voice minutes" from the telecom industry. I found those questions very fun, especially since some in attendance seemed to be cheering against Google for those two questions. I certainly am rooting for Google to disrupt the established telecom industry business models. Sub-$100 fully featured Android phones could reach not only populations of rich countries, but those billions of people in developing countries, even people who currently live in slumps, in misery, and for whome I am convinced access to technology could be a faster solution.

While you wait for my next videos, you can watch Google CEO Eric Schmidt's keynote at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona in the following video:

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Marvell 618 at Mobile World Congress 2010

Posted by Charbax – February 17, 2010

The latest most powerful ARM Processor by Marvell, it includes all the most advanced features that Marvell can deliver for a full ARM Powered experience device.

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HP Compaq Airlife 100 Android Laptop at Mobile World Congress 2010

Posted by Charbax – February 17, 2010

This HP Android laptop is still one of the best of its kind that I have seen so far in consumer electronics shows.

MSI Android Tablet at Mobile World Congress 2010

Posted by Charbax – February 17, 2010

Texas Instruments OMAP4 demonstrations

Posted by Charbax – February 16, 2010

Product manager in OMAP4 based Linux soloutions, Eric Thomas, talks to us about OMAP4 and shows us the cool looking OMAP4 based development board doing all kinds of awesome things.