Back in April of this year, Engadget reported a (photo) leak of two Dell tablets, tablets that no one even expected to exist.
Both strongly resembled the Dell Streak smartphone; one had a 7-inch screen, while the other sported a 10-inch. The 7″ was leaked to have a release date of “late 2010″, while the 10” would be released sometime in “early 2011”.
Thanks to Michael Dell, quietly announcing the 7″ Streak look-alike on September 22nd at the Oracle conference, we now have some official word noting its existence.
Although no other information was released at the conference, we do know it will run some version of Android. Dell’s Streak was infamous for running an older, relatively outdated version of Android, the 1.6 (Eclair), which rightfully pushed the buttons of reviewers everywhere. What incentive would new consumers have if they purchase the Streak, when they could grab almost any other recent Android phone release that would carry a far more up-to-date operating system?
Therefore, logical speculation would say there’s no reason Dell would make the same mistake on its tablets. The 7″ and 10″ should run Android 2.2 (Froyo), and if it doesn’t, you can expect another Dell mobile device to gather dust on the shelves of an AT&T near you.
Assuming Dell does not make the mistake of putting another outdated OS on a device, and setting it up for failure, the company encounters some other challenges. Why would a Dell customer, say, one who has a Streak, purchase a 7″ tablet that not only looks the same and packs only a few more inches of screen size, but operates similarly as well?
There’s a good chance the 7″ Dell Android tablet will be won or lost on price alone. Because of the paradox regarding Dell’s consumer utility, the 7″ and 10″ devices will naturally evolve to have two very different uses.
For more information on tablet releases, check out RIM Flashes its Potential with the PlayBook Tablet, and Apple Announces the iPad Tablet.