Desktops and Notebooks: Dell Streak 7 Offers Solid Tablet Experience, with Android 2.2 Quirks
Dell's newest tablet, the Streak 7, is aimed at the increasingly competitive market for 7-inch tablets. Running Android 2.2 ("Froyo"), and backed with a dual-core 1GHz Nvidia Tegra processor, the device will compete directly against the Samsung Galaxy Tab and RIM's upcoming PlayBook, and in the broader tablet category against the bestselling Apple iPad. Dell has suggested that the Streak 7 will receive over-the-air software updates, meaning it could upgrade soon to tablet-centric Android 3.0 ("Honeycomb")which, being optimized for larger screens, means that users could conceivably get more from their applications. Dell's previous effort, the 5-inch Streak, tried to walk the tightrope between smartphone and tablet. The Streak 7, by contrast, feels like a pure tablet. The screen makes e-reading an eyestrain-free experience, and the processor means that heavier-duty functions such as video and games perform without a stutter. That being said, the screen seems a bit dimmer than rival offerings, and certain featuresmost notably the cameracould use some improvement. But as tablets go, Dell's latest is a solid offering in a category still struggling to define itself. The Streak 7 sells for $199.99 with a two-year T-Mobile contract, or $449.99 unlocked.