Asus, the netbook pioneer, is joining a growing list of companies in introducing several tablets at CES. At least two are expected to run Android 2.4.
Add Asus to the list of PC makers expected to introduce media tablets at the
2011 Consumer Electronics Show, which kicks off Jan. 5.
Also known as Asustek Computer, the company that started the
netbook craze is expected to introduce at least one tablet with a detachable
keyboard and one with a sliding keyboard, Taiwan's
Central News Agency reported. The devices will reportedly both feature 10-inch
displays and run Google's Android 2.4 operating system-or "Honeycomb"-which is
said to have features especially complementary to tablets.
, citing a video
it believes Asus had posted but then pulled, says the company appears to have
four models in the works-the EeePa EP71, EP101, EP102 and EP121. The video
features Jonney Shih, chairman of Asus, discussing the tablets before a
chalkboard with renderings of the devices. The EP101 is apparently the tablet
with the detachable, dockable keyboard, while the EP102 has the slide-out
The Eee Pad 121 is the 12-inch Windows 7 tablet that the company
hinted at just before Christmas. According to Slashgear, it features a 12-inch
display, an Intel Core i5 processor and HDMI (High-Definition Multimedia
Interface) and USB connectivity. (News of
this tablet first
broke during the summer
, and the original plans called for a Core 2 Duo ULV
The least is known about the final tablet, the Eee Pad EP71, beyond
that it will run Android and have a 7-inch notepad-style form factor, reports
The fast-growing tablet space is filling with competitors well
acquainted from the PC market. Toshiba
is also expected
to introduce an Android 2.4-running tablet with a 10-inch
display at the show. In the PC market, Asus
beat out Toshiba
during the third quarter of 2010, claiming the last seat
in the Top 5 and pushing Toshiba to sixth position.
Hewlett-Packard and Dell, other PC competitors, are also joining
the space, and smartphone maker Research In Motion is also reportedly
fine-tuning an offering, the PlayBook. Even leading television maker Vizio is
getting in on the act.
On Jan. 3, in anticipation of the show and following a television
advertisement that debuted during the Rose Bowl Jan.1, Vizio introduce an 8-inch
tablet, the Via Tablet, and a smartphone, the Via Phone, with a 4-inch display.
Both will run the Android operating system. While an unlikely dark horse, the
company expects to shake up the market by offering price points meant to appeal
to shoppers at Wal-Mart and Costco.
Tech site RCR Wireless
also got a look at the Asus video, which it has embedded
on its site. The bigger news, though, is that there won't be much longer to
wait for more details.
All this is just the beginning. There's an E for everyone, Shih
says in the video. Asus officials will be speaking at a press conference at 2 p.m. Jan. 4 at the Aria Hotel in Las