Dell is set to roll out its newest tablet, the business-focused 10.1-inch Streak Pro, in June, according to reports.
Dell’s tablet, which will run Google’s Android 3.0 “Honeycomb” operating system, will join a long list of media tablets set to roll out during the summer as a growing number of vendors look to gain traction in the rapidly growing tablet space currently dominated by Apple’s iPad.
The new device will be Dell’s third tablet, joining the Streak-which offers a 5-inch screen-and the 7-inch Streak 7. Earlier reports had Dell’s Streak Pro being powered by Nvidia’s Tegra 2 T2 5 SoC (system on a chip), which among other things is 3D-capable. However, according to a May 19 report in SlashGear, the device will be powered by a slower Nvidia chip, the 1.0GHz Tegra 2 T20, which does not have the 3D capabilities.
The Streak Pro will offer a 1280 x 800 touch screen and weigh 1.59 pounds, according to reports. It will offer models with 16GB, 32GB and 64GB flash memory, a 5-megapixel rear camera and 2-megapixel camera on the front, will include Bluetooth and WiFi capabilities, and will come in a number of colors, including black, blue, red and pink.
Included accessories include an in-car changer, a “productivity dock” and a folding cover with an integrated keyboard.
Dell is one of several vendors that wants in on a tablet space that market research firm Gartner has said will grow from almost 70 million in sales this year to 294 million in 2015. The challengers to Apple are coming from both the PC world-Dell, Hewlett-Packard and Acer, for example-and the smartphone space, including BlackBerry-maker Research In Motion, Motorola and Samsung.
For Dell and HP, tablets are a way of expanding their reach in the industry beyond the PC. On May 17, executives with both companies, while announcing quarterly earnings, said they saw revenue drops in their consumer PC businesses, though sales of their commercial PC units were healthy. Analysts have debated the impact of tablets on sales of traditional laptops. Forrester Research analyst Sarah Rotman Epps, in a May 17 blog post, said tablets were part of the problem facing Dell, HP and Acer, but not the biggest.
“Tablet cannibalization is only a minor contributor to soft PC sales,” Epps wrote. “The bigger factor is the Windows release cycle-so many consumers bought new PCs when Windows 7 came out, and without a new version of Windows this year, there isn’t the same catalyst to buy.”
During a May 17 conference call with analysts and journalist to announce his company’s earnings, Dell CEO Michael Dell questioned whether tablets would see high adoptions rates in businesses. Dell said that tablets are the third device choice-after smartphones and PCs-“and you can’t find a lot of companies that are going to have three devices for all of their users. … We’re not seeing tablets replacing the smartphone or the PC in large numbers in organizations.”
HP CEO Leo Apotheker, in his earnings conference call, said his company has felt the impact of smartphone and tablet sales on the consumer PC business, and reiterated the company’s intent to roll out its webOS-based TouchPad this summer.