Google’s Project Tango is a hardware and software platform that lets tablets or phones create 3D maps of their environment so apps can interact with real-world settings.
Developers can sign up to be notified when it’s available for purchase… but the tablet isn’t cheap. It’ll run $1024 when it launches later in 2014.
For that price you get a 7 inch tablet with an NVIDIA Tegra K1 processor, 4GB of RAM, and 128GB of storage. It has WiFi, Bluetooth 4.0 Low Energy and some models will feature 4G LTE support.
What really makes the developer kit special though are the integrated cameras and sensors which help Project Tango software detect the world around the tablet so that app developers can create apps that let you do things like virtually change the paint color in your room, remodel your bathroom, or play a first-person shooter that uses real objects in your environment as obstacles, just to name a few ideas.
The developer tablet has a front-facing camera with a 120 degree viewing angle, a 4MP, 2 μm pixel camera on the back, a separate motion-tracking camera, and an integrated depth sensor.
It’s unlikely that tablets with Tango technology will actually sell for upward of $1000, but Google seems to be making a habit of charging premium prices for developer preview devices… Members of the Google Glass Explorer program have to spend $1500 to get their hands on a pre-release version of Google’s wearable computer. Among other things, these high prices probably help keep people who might not be prepared to test an unfinished product from spending money on a device they’ll be disappointed in.
You can find more details about the Project Tango Tablet dev kit at NVIDIA’s blog.