Freescale suggests ARM based tablets for $200?
Source: Freescale Processor manufacturer Freescale Semiconductor has announced a reference design for tablet PCs that the company believes will make products feasible at a cost of $200. The first demo devices are to be exhibited at the CES trade show in Las Vegas, which is due to start on Tuesday. They offer a 7-inch display, run on Freescale's i.MX515 ARM processor, and include Wi-Fi as well as Bluetooth. UMTS and an external keyboard which clips onto the tablet PC are to be available as optional extras. The devices are to use Linux-based operating systems such as Android. According to Freescale, the tablet PCs could be on the shelves by mid 2010 if suitable manufacturers come forward.
In addition to the standard email and browser applications, the demo devices run an Adobe Flash player with multimedia plug-ins, media centre software, an RSS reader, office applications, a handwriting recognition program, and widgets for Facebook, Twitter, Flickr and similar sites. However, reader software for E-book formats such as Kindle or Epub has not been mentioned.
At the CES, exhibitors will also present dozens of other tablets based on ARM processors, like the NVIDIA Tegra, or on Intel processors, like the Archos 9. Apple may be presenting a similarly specified device that is, according to rumours, to offer more extensive E-book related features, some time this month.