As expected, HTC officially announced their first Android tablet today in the 7-inch Flyer. While the hardware is incredible with its 1.5GHz processor, 1GB RAM, and 5-megapixel camera, we fear it has a tough road ahead because of the software. Unfortunately, as Android tablets really begin to take off this winter and spring, all eyes are on the Honeycomb tablets like the LG Optimus Pad and Motorola XOOM. Rather than waiting to release the Flyer with the latest version of Android, HTC has opted to put the tablet out with an optimized version of Sense.
While it might sound like we’re already discounting the tablet as a contender, we’re not. HTC has not simply pulled their normal Sense UI over to a larger screen. They really have done quite a bit to make sure the experience is a great one. For instance, there are new widgets to swipe through for pictures, contacts, media, and more.
HTC is also introducing a handful of new features with the Flyer such as HTC Scribe, HTC Watch (HD movies), and HTC Timemark. Each brings something unique to the tablet experience and should play nice for end users. As Sense has been great for first time smart phone users, we anticipate the same for first time tablet buyers.
HTC’s Scribe and digital ink technology lets users draw directly on top of images, take notes, and more with the use of a stylus. With full Evernote integration, one will be able to automatically sync all their notes, images, reminders, and tasks in the cloud and access them from anywhere. The Timemark feature lets users record audio from a meeting or conversation, and sync it with written notes. Returning to your notes, a quick tap of a word plays back the recorded audio.
Unfortunately we are not certain as to when the Flyer will be released nor what the price tag will be. We’re expecting the tablet to land in European and Asian markets first, eventually coming stateside.
WHERE’S MY HONEYCOMB?
As there may be a few months before we see it here in the United States, there is plenty of time to add in Honeycomb. And, judging by what we’ve heard on our end, HTC plans to bring Android 3.0 to the Flyer in short order.
- 7-inch Super LCD screen
- 1024 by 600 pixel resolution
- Half an inch thick
- 14.8 ounces
- 1.5GHz MSM8255 Snapdragon processor
- 1GB RAM
- 32GB ROM
- 5MP camera
- 1.3MP front facing camera
- 3.5mm headset jack
- 4000 mAh battery
How many people are really going to wait for Sense to be brought up to date on Honeycomb before getting a tablet? This is the problem with Android customizations. It takes time and effort to bring those customizations up to date with the latest version of Android. While waiting, customers are looking at the competition’s products. Just make Sense optional already. When I turn my device on for the first time, it should have Vanilla Android on it and I should be presented with the option of installing Sense. Further, I should be able to uninstall or wipe the tablet to get the latest version of Android when it comes out. Sure, I may loose some data, but give me the option.
I agree totally, I too believe the user should be given the option and the UI should be similar to most apps or even launchers, an option you decide to use or not.
Price would be the ultimate decider as Honeycomb stock has so much to offer, running Sense over the top ,might IMHO ruin that. So if priced right many may consider it otherwise with the products from Samsung, LG and Motorolla all coming to the party with Android 3.0 as stock, HTC “MAY” be playing catchup for a long time to come
I concur, the situation with most Android users largely revolves around the lack of continuity in the customised UI’s and the vendors complete lack of making THEIR UI optional. I have had various mobile’s since Androids inception and the main reason everyone seems to customise their phone’s OS through options like Cyanogen is down to the inability to get the latest update from their vendor.
Vanilla Android OS needs to be an option as the vendors idea of how we are supposed to use our phones or indeed tablets is far more restrictive as you don’t have a choice to use the original OS app for contacts etc.
Sense UI is by far and large the best customisation and has many additional features than the Vanilla OS but the customisation is not optional.
The price of this tablet will determine it’s success. It if can undercut the competition by a fair margin I has a good chance of mass adoption.
HTC needs to break from Qualcomm and go with nVidia if they want to stay ahead of the curve. Look at their pathetic MWC selection compared to everyone who are using Tegra2 instead. Sad.
Yes, the prices will determine its success.
can I even say brazzers?
a nice 99 quid should see it right as at 7″ it aint big enough ta eat yer chips off
they will no dout
drop on the carpet fur da dog
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