This has got to be bar far one of the most impressive pieces of hardware I’ve seen in quite some time. The Touch Book, by a small California startup called Always Innovating, is designed to work both as a netbook (with an unheard of 10-15 hour battery life) when attached to its keyboard dock or as a touch tablet without it. In addition, the tablet features a magnetic rear surface that lends itself to being used a refrigerator mounted kitchen computer or digital photo frame, includes a custom tablet touch UI built on top of Linux (capable of running Android and Windows CE — personally, I’d like to see Ubuntu MID running on this), a 600 MHz TI OMAP3 ARM processor, 256MB RAM, 3-axis accelerometer, 8GB microSD card for storage, 1024×768 8.9-inch screen, and wireless 802.11b/g/n connectivity. The Touch Book should be out this May and will start at around $300 for just the tablet + $100 more for the keyboard dock.
NEW TOUCHBOOK COMBINES NETBOOK AND TOUCHSCREEN TABLET; PROVIDES THREE TIMES THE BATTERY LIFE AT UNDER TWO POUNDS
Always Innovating today unveiled the Touch Book, a versatile new device that works as both a netbook and a tablet thanks to a detachable keyboard and a 3D touchscreen interface. The Touch Book, previewed at DEMO09, weighs less than two pounds as a netbook and has a battery life of 10 to 15 hours — three times longer than most netbooks.
“The Touch Book is perfect for these tough economic times because you can use it in so many ways” said Gregoire Gentil, founder of Always Innovating and creator of the Touch Book. “You can use it as a netbook computer, a hand-held game machine, or a video player. You can even reverse the keyboard to prop it up on a table in an inverted ‘V’. Finally, because it is magnetic, you can remove the keyboard and put the tablet on the fridge to serve as a kitchen computer or digital frame.”
The Touch Book combines the best of open source software and open hardware with a sleek industrial design by designer Fred Bould. The innovative design includes internal USB plugs. “I hate having dongles hanging from my laptop – I often end up disconnecting them accidentally — so we opted to put the USB inside,” said Gentil.
The Touch Book is the first netbook featuring an ARM processor from Texas Instruments, resulting in outstanding battery life, and a fan less, heat-and-noise-free system.
According to Chris Shipley, executive producer of the DEMO conferences, the Touch Book’s innovative architecture and industrial design earned it a spot on the DEMO conference stage. “The longer battery life is a boon to netbook users. But the Touch Book’s versatility – its ability to function as a netbook as well as a standalone touchscreen tablet – makes it a breakthrough product,” said Shipley.
The Touch Book is expected to ship in late Spring and will start at $299. Advance orders can be placed at http://www.alwaysinnovating.com/store/.
About the Company
Founded by serial entrepreneur Gregoire Gentil, Always Innovating leverages the latest developments in open source technologies worldwide to create innovative products that solve real problems for consumers. The company is based in Menlo Park, Calif.
Produced by Network World Events and Executive Forums, the semi-annual DEMO conferences focus on emerging technologies and new products, which are hand-selected from across the spectrum of the technology marketplace. The DEMO conferences have earned their reputation for consistently identifying tomorrow’s cutting-edge technologies, and have served as launch pad events for companies such as Palm, E*Trade, Handspring, and U.S. Robotics, helping them to secure venture funding, establish critical business relationships, and influence early adopters. Each DEMO conference features approximately 70 new companies, products and technologies. For more information, visit http://www.demo.com.
Tags: Always Innovating, Always innovating Touch Book, Netbook, Touch Tablet, Ubuntu MID
Filed in: Entertainment PCs, Portable Media Players