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Tablet Market Sizzles With New Developments

9/08/2011 12:01:00 AM Eastern

NEW YORK — The tablet market refused to take vacation
time as it headed into the Labor Day holiday.

AT&T announced plans for its first 4G tablet, Sony
announced pricing and availability of on one of its
two new tablets, and Hewlett-Packard said it plans
to resume production of a limited quantity of Touch-
Pads.

At AT&T, the carrier planned Sept. 4 availability of
its first 4G-equipped tablet, the HTC-made Jetstream,
which is HTC’s first tablet with Android’s Honeycomb
OS. It is equipped with 4G HSPA+ and 4G LTE
technology, 10.1-inch WXGA HD display, Qualcomm
Snapdragon 1.5GHz dual-core processor, front- and
rear-facing cameras, and Wi-Fi video chat.

The tablet was to be available only
in AT&T-owned retail stores and the
carrier’s online store at $699 with
a new two-year contract for a 3GB
$35/month data plan. The contract
price marks the first time
that AT&T is subsidizing a tablet’s
price if the customer
signs a contract. Consumers,
however, can also buy
the tablet at an unsubsidized
$899 price if they want to get month-tomonth
postpaid or month-to-month prepaid plans.

To deliver 4G speeds, the Honeycomb 3.1 device
will operate in LTE mode in AT&T’s 700MHz
and AWS-band (1.7/2.1GHz) spectrum, in 21Mbps
HSPA+ mode in AT&T’s 850/1900MHz bands, and
in HSPA+ mode in the foreign 2.1GHz band.

Features include 1080p playback and capture,
rear-facing 8-megapixel
camera with dual-LED
flash, 1.3-megpixel
front-facing camera,
and MicroSD slot supporting
up to 32GB.

For its part, Sony released
pricing and availability of the Wi-Fi-equipped
Tablet S tablet but declined to get specific about the
price and availability of the foldable Tablet P, which
will be available with Wi-Fi and embedded
AT&T HSPA+ 4G service.
Both tablets use the Android
Honeycomb OS, the former using
Android 3.1 and the latter using
Android 3.2.

The Tablet S, available in 16GB
and 32GB versions, is available for
preorder and will be on store shelves in
September at suggested retails of $499
and $599, respectively.

The Tablet P will ship sometime later this year. As
an AT&T executive previously stated, the device will
“leverage Sony and AT&T distribution.”

The chassis of the S, unlike other tablets, features
a tapered depth that shifts weight closer to the user’s palm, making it more comfortable to hold for long
periods of time.

Except for memory capacity, both versions of the S offer
the same features, including Android 3.1 OS, upgradability
to Android 3.2, 1GHz Nvidia Tegra 2 processor,
9.4-inch display, SD card slot, USB 2.0 port, front- and
rear-facing cameras, videochat, Bluetooth connectivity,
and Wi-Fi 802.11b/g/n.

The Tablet features two 5.5-inch screens that fold
together, enabling it to be easily carried. At Hewlett-
Packard, the company announced it would temporarily
change course and release more TouchPads after having
announced that it would exit the tablet and smartphone
businesses.

On Aug. 30, the company said it “will be at least a few
weeks before we have a limited quantity available again.”

TouchPad supplies at retail quickly ran out after HP
cut the retail price to $99 to clear out excess retail-level
inventory. “We are working to make more available as
soon as possible,” the company said.