It's taken a while, but it looks like tablet PCs are finally starting to take off. Apple's new iTablet is rumored for an early 2010 release, but here in 2009 we've got both the CrunchPad, and Archos' new Android Internet tablet to look forward to. That's right; Archos has set an official release date for their upcoming touchscreen gadget. According to Pocketables, we can look forward to seeing it hit stores on September 15th.
Archos isn't just launching a tablet, though, they're heralding the release of a new generation of high-end Android products. It's time Google's OS stopped being a smartphone only affair. This new Archos tablet is a very high-end device, with a 5” WVGA touchscreen, 720p video suppport, HDMI output, up to 500 GB of storage, 7 hours of battery life, a Cortex CPU and 3.5G Internet connectivity. That's a feature list that gives all the iTablet rumors we've heard so far a run for their money.
In order to usher in this new age for Android, Archos has launched AppsLib, a new app store for “high-end Android devices”. Basically, they've decided to split the Android world between low/mid-range smartphones, and other devices like tablets, netbooks, and high-end smartphones. I'm not convinced that this new app market will produce the sort of apps Archos needs to compete with the iTablet's app store, but they've got the rest of 2009 to produce a solid line-up.
There's no information yet on the cost of this new Archos tablet, but we can expect to see more details arise over the next few weeks before launch.