Toshiba doesn’t want to be left out of the Android tablet tsunami that should be approaching any time now, and they’re prepping the SmartPad to help buoy the computer maker’s tablet-game. As it stands, we’re just wading in the water with the Streak and that other, unmentionable Android tablet. But, with an Android tablet either leaked or announced seemingly every week nowadays, we’re already starting to see the tide rising. The company is rumored to debut their SmartPad next week at the IFA Berlin 2010. While we don’t have an official spec sheet, the rumored feature set should provide some much-needed competition in the tablet space.
Images of the SmartPad were leaked today before the official announcement, and we’re glad it did, as it looks like something we can really begin to look forward to. The SmartPad sports a 10 inch capacitive touch screen, and plenty of connectivity ports. HDMI, USB, mini-USB, a memory card reader, and docking port can all be found on the device, and we’d expect to see quite a few accessories for this bad boy as well. Best of all, this tablet is said to be powered by the NVDIA Tegra 2 processor, which offers the kind of true dual-core processing that other chip makers are only just starting to talk about. When this thing ships, we’d expect it to run a smooth as butter. Let’s just hope there’s isn’t too much bloatware pre-installed when it ships.
The tablet is definitely running the Android operating system, and all the proof you need is in the capacitive (touch-sensitive) buttons on the side of the tablet. The standard search, back, home, and menu buttons, which are found on virtually every Android device, give the SmartPad’s Android roots away. But what we don’t know is the version of Android the SmartPad will be shipping with. I’d say at least Android 2.1 (Eclair), or 2.2 (Froyo). It seems a little too early to expect Gingerbread on the tablet, but if the SmartPad is just being announced, and will ship later this year, Toshiba may have enough time to give the device some Gingerbread-lovin. We sure hope so.
Let’s hope Toshiba will deliver the goods with the SmartPad, and we’re hoping this thing will actually ship sooner than later.