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10 tablet PCs to rival the Apple iPad

We look at the offerings from other tech firms

Dell, HP, and Lenovo are rushing to compete against the Apple iPad in the tablet PC market, which could reach 50 million units by 2015. We look at what's on offer.

Netbook tablets

If you'd like to flick through web pages or e-books by touch, but you don't want to give up your physical keyboard, a netbook equipped with a swiveling screen may be a good compromise.

Over the next few months, several new 'netvertibles' will emerge, including the Lenovo IdeaPad S10-3T, the Viliv S10 Blade, the Asus Eee PC T101MT and the Gigabyte Touch Note T1000P.

Each will have a 10.1in multitouch display, will run Windows 7, and will cheaper than many standard 12.1 inch convertibles.

ExoPC Slate

The ExoPC Slate - a Windows 7 slate with a custom touch interface, an 8.9in (1366x768-pixel) multitouch screen, netbook-like specs, and Flash support - was scheduled to arrive at the end of March, but ExoPC postponed the launch to June or July.

To upgrade specs against the rival HP Slate, perhaps? Whatever the reason, the ExoPC Slate will include at least a 1.66GHz Intel Atom N450 processor, 2GB RAM, 32GB or 64GB of storage, Intel GMA500 graphics, a front-facing 1.3-megapixel camera for videoconferencing, 802.11n Wi-Fi, two USB 2.0 slots, and a mini-HDMI output. The unit is due in the summer of 2010. Prices have yet to be released.

ICD Ultra

Innovative Converged Devices' Ultra is expected to start at just $250 (£165) when it reaches the US market later this year.

The Ultra's big brother (the 15.6in ICD Vega) is headed to T-Mobile in before the end of the year.

Specs include a 7in resistive single-touch display (with a resolution of 1024x600 pixels or 800x480 pixels; capacitive versions are expected as well), a 1GHz nVidia Tegra 2 (Tegra T20) CPU, 256MB of RAM and 512MB of ROM, 4GB of internal flash memory (non-removable), 802.11b/g Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, mini HDMI output, FM radio, and 3G and GPS options.

Archos 9 PC Tablet

On paper, the Archos 9 looks impressive, thanks to a 1.2GHz Atom Z510 CPU, 1GB of RAM, a 60GB hard disk, Windows 7, a front-facing Webcam, Flash support, and a price of £450.

But its 8.9in display is resistive and lacks multitouch, and the company hasn't made Windows 7 any more finger-friendly.

Archos also sells 7- and 5in Android-based tablets/mobile internet access devices, and recently announced the Archos 8 Home Tablet - essentially, an 8-inch touchscreen photo frame that runs Android.

See also: HP Slate vs Apple's iPad

  1. We look at the offerings from other tech firms
  2. HP's Slate PC and other rivals
  3. Netbook tablets

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