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12:03 PM

MeeGo Based Tablet PC Introduced At IDF

WeTab, previewed at the Intel Developer Forum, will be the first tablet to run the open source operating system offered by Intel and Nokia.

WeTab Tablet PC
(click image for larger view)
WeTab Tablet PC
The WeTab, the first tablet to run the open source MeeGo operating system, will make its debut next week in Germany. The device was introduced during a keynote address at this week's Intel Developer Forum (IDF) in San Francisco.

WeTab makers Neofonie and 4tiitoo said the device will initially be available only in Germany but hope the operating system will help it garner widespread attention. 4tiitoo CEO Stephan Odofer said they started working on WeTab three years ago on Ubuntu but recently decided to make the switch to MeeGo. MeeGo was launched last February at the Mobile World Congress by Intel and Nokia.

Odofer said they found MeeGo to be a very optimized and comprehensive operating system for tablets. The OS provides a flexible user interface and application environments and supports all popular file formats. Users have the ultimate control -- the device's interface even has a 'root' button that opens up a Linux command prompt.

Boot-up times for the tablet are just 16 seconds, the companies claim, with a one second recovery time when it is in sleep mode. WeTab is an 11.6-inch tablet with a high contrast 1366 x 768 screen resolution and multi-touch display, as well as an ambient light sensor and acceleration sensor. The basic version comes with 16GB and WLAN and weighs about 1.8 pounds, and the 3G version has 32GB, WLAN, full high-definition 1080p through HDMI, and GPS and weighs 1.9 pounds.

The device uses a high-powered Intel Atom N450 1.66GHz CPU processor and has a battery life of up to six hours. It also features 1 GB of RAM, 2 USBs, Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity, and a 1.3-mexapixel webcam. Applications are available from the WeTab Meta Store or from integrated open stores, with support also for native, Java, Linux, Adobe Air, and Android apps.

The tablet's basic version will retail for 449 Euros ($585 U.S.) while the 3G version is 569 Euros ($741). Both will begin shipping on Tuesday but there is no global release date yet.

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