Freescale Semiconductor has unveiled for CES 2010 the future of the low-end tablet category with a tablet reference design featuring a 7-inch touch screen with up to four times the viewing area of a typical smartphone and based on a form factor that is approximately one-third the size and volume of today's typical netbook.
The Freescale Tablet is intended to enable a second generation of smartbook products with prices less than $200 and featuring form factors that fully leverage the power, performance and functionality advantages of ARM processor technology.
The tablet is designed to provide instant-on functionality, persistent connectivity and all-day battery life.
Designed to help OEMs jump-start creation of tablets, the solution is based on Freescale's i.MX515 processor incorporating ARM Cortex-A8 technology. It also includes Freescale's MC13892 power management IC, SGTL5000 audio codec and MMA8450Q 3-axis accelerometer. End products based on the design could hit retail shelves as soon as the summer of 2010.
The Freescale tablet will be demonstrated at the CES 2010 running both the Android and Linux operating systems.
My take on tablet computers is still that they need to do something better than a notebook or netbook. Just to have a tablet is not cutting it. This is why all eyes are on Apple to find out what experience they will create using a Tablet instead of an iPhone or MacBook.
The good thing with solutions like the one from Freescale is that they increase the price pressure for Apple as Tablets could hit the market for under $200. The current rumors put the Apple Tablet at a price point of $1,000. Apple needs to have a huge differentiator to rectify this price difference.
CES 2010 will start on 7th of January 2010 and lasts until 10th. Of course CES news are already pouring in. Read them in our CES 2010 section.