The Neofonie WeTab is an 11.6 inch tablet with a custom Linux interface and a home screen filled with a series of widgets to give you access to your most important information at a glance. Apparently along with updates from your email, instant messenger, news feeds, and social networking sites, that includes advertising.

Tblt.de reports that the WeTab ships with advertising widgets installed on the Home Screen… and there’s no way to remove them. Noefonie says that’s because advertising is an important part of the company’s plans to make money from the WeTab.

Of course, it’s not unusual for companies to load up hardware with software that you didn’t ask for in order to drive down the cost. Computers have shipped with trial versions of Microsoft Office, Norton Internet Security, or other apps for years. But you can uninstall those apps if you don’t like them. As of right now, there’s no easy way to remove the advertising widgets on the WeTab, which is more than a little annoying.

Of course, it probably wont’ take users very long to figure out how to hack the tablet’s Linux-based code to remove the widgets or make other modifications. Or maybe we’ll just start to see people wiping the operating system altogether and installing their own.

The WeTab is expected to launch later this year in Germany.

You can check out some hands-on videos from Tblt.de after the break.

via Netbook News

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8 replies on “Noefonie WeTab German tablet to be partially ad-supported”

  1. I was looking forward to seeing this device in the shops in England, with a view to buying. Having just learned that it has an advertising widget that can’t be removed I now do not care if it is the best tablet in the world I will never buy one.

  2. Make sure WeTab can view/modify & save back to Win format MSWord, MSExcel, & MSPowerPoint ‘files’ or it will be a business looser! Make sure WeTab can connect to both simultaneously common USB external keyboard & mouse.

    Big issue for me is allowing hot LiIon battery swap-out keeping WeTab operable — WeTab must sell an external 120V/12V battery charger to charge dead WeTab batteries outside of the WeTab. iPad/pod do not allow battery change!

    Make sure WeTab can do Skype/VoIP without ‘requiring’ any external camera/mic/speaker. Insure separate 3.5mm stereo jacks for mic & headphone for private use – no funky special mic/earphone jack like iPods.

  3. WeTab needs to do a REAL marketing campaign if they want to hold off buyers from going iPad before next semester school. What WeTab is NOT doing is telling how they are different from iPad and the limitations Apple puts on all IPxxx products, for Apples control and $$$ gain. I’m waiting fro WeTab due to USB & I/O portability – iPad does not have.

  4. Ad-support will hurt the sales of this otherwise nice looking tablet. Give it good specifications, Put Windows 7 on it and charge what it is worth and people will buyt it. I would NOT buy it with Ad-support. Ad-support is a way for malware and spyware to be introduced onto a system without the owners knowledge or permission.

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