With a new Apple (AAPL)iPad likely on the way and Samsung rumored to be cutting prices on its 7-inch Galaxy Tab, "me too" tablets look to jump in and offer choices to shoppers who aren't sure what to do about the next small computer purchase.
Asus, best known for powering the short-lived netbook revolution, unveiled four tablets Tuesday evening in what amounts to digital spaghetti flung against the wall -- something is bound to stick.
Last year, Lenovo showed off a tablet, but never launched it. Now that same tablet is back in different iterations, one powered by Android and another powered by Microsoft (MSFT) Windows. The multi-OS approach is a lather-rinse-repeat approach to the consumer space that leaves some tech watchers wondering just who these tablets are aimed at.
The Asus Eee Pad slider (pictured above) in the most interesting of the bunch. The model, with a 10-inch screen, is the closest to the iPad, but the kicker is the slider: it's a keyboard that comes off the bottom and displays at an angle. With a $699 starting point, the slider prices itself out of the market. That's far more than your basic netbook -- which this slider emulates -- and the slider offers nothing feature-wise to separate it from the onslaught of tablets expected over the next four days. Asus brags that the tablet's Nvidia (NVDA) Tegra 2 processor provides support for Adobe (ADBE) Flash, HD video conferencing, speedy browsing and gaming. Even with the 3G option down the road, the Slider may have a hard time breaking out of the pack.
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