CES 2012: Tablets
Without an Apple presence at CES, it's a chance for other manufacturers to shout about their tablet devices. But there's not the mad rush of iPad rivals that you might expect. Poor sales of Android tablets seem to have made the big electronics giants more cautious.
That said, this week we've nodded appreciatively in the direction of the Acer Iconia Tab A700, which will come packing Android 4.0 (aka Ice Cream Sandwich) and a huge quad-core processor. Nice.
Toshiba has also jumped back into tablet waters with the new Excite 10, a stylish 10.1-inch Android slab that boasts a 1.2GHz dual-core TI processor and a 1,280 x 800 pixel display.
But it's Lenovo that has turned heads and widened eyes with its two new tablet models. There's the Asus Transformer-alike IdeaPad S2 running Ice Cream Sandwich and the quad-core Tegra 3-powered IdeaPad K2 (see below), which looks like a supercomputer pretending to be a clipboard.
Lenovo has also been showing off the IdeaPad Yoga, a 13.1-inch laptop/tablet that has been described as "like Microsoft's vision for the Tablet PC from 2002. Only good."
We've also had a play with the ViewSonic ViewPad E70 and the Aigopad m803. While the feisty, quad-core Asus MeMo has Amazon's Kindle Fire firmly in its sights.
Looking to the future, Nvidia has been demoing a prototype Windows 8 tablet, powered by its quad-core Tegra 3 processor. It's good. Very good. Intel should be worried.
Meanwhile, Razer's 'Project Fiona' gaming tablet (see below) has got us all frothed up about gaming on the sofa in 2012. Who needs a PlayStation Vita when you can play PC games on a tablet with two controllers? We hate those fiddly touchscreen joypads...
What of RIM? Rather than unveil a new Playbook model (that would be sheer madness...), the beleaguered Blackberry builder has upgraded its tablet software to version 2.0. We wish we had some groundbreaking features to report. We don't. See for yourself.