HTC Announces Flyer: 7-inch Android Tablet
After a year of playing will-they-or-won't-they, HTC has finally put the rumors to rest by announcing the HTC Flyer, the company's first Android tablet.
HTC already has an incredible track record with Android due to the popularity (with consumers and reviewers) of their Android smartphones. In fact, it was HTC that brought the very first Android phone, the T-Mobile G1, to market in 2008.
"Clearly, smartphones have transformed our lives, but as we observed how people use smartphones, computers and other technologies, we saw an opportunity to create a tablet experience that is different, more personal and productive," said Peter Chou, CEO of HTC, in a company statement. "We are progressing down a path as an industry when people will no longer be in a single device paradigm, but have multiple wireless devices for different needs; this is the direction we are moving."
The HTC Flyer is a 7-inch tablet in the vein of the Samsung Galaxy Tab, but the HTC tablet is much more powerful. For starters, it has a 1.5GHz processor. The processor isn't dual-core like many of the competing tablet processors, but that amount of speed should still be more than sufficient for Android. Furthermore, 1 GB of RAM and 32 GB of storage should help things along nicely.
Even more exciting, the Flyer is supposed to have Android 2.4 (still technically codenamed Gingerbread like version 2.3, according to hardware manufacturer Viewsonic) pre-installed. HTC has also tweaked the popular Sense skin present on HTC phones to accommodate a tablet-size screen.
The display itself has a 1024 by 600 pixel resolution, and the back is brushed aluminum with white accents.
Other specs include a microSD card slot for storage expansion, 5 megapixel camera in back, 1.3 megapixel camera in front and a 4000mAh battery rated for four hours of continuous video playback, which is actually the least impressive thing about the HTC Flyer.
HTC also included a few surprises with the Flyer. First of all, it comes with the OnLive cloud gaming service installed, which makes it possible to play console games without a console over an Internet connection.
But even more surprising is the pressure-sensitive capacitive stylus. The HTC Flyer display still takes multitouch gestures just like any other tablet, but HTC is also including the stylus for precision input, such as annotating documents.
HTC said the Flyer will be released in the second quarter of 2011, but did not give a price.