In case you got all caught up in the Apple Tablet madness that was yesterday, now might be a good time to remind you that there are dozens of other companies working on touchscreen tablets designed to fill the niche between smartphones and notebooks. You know, if that’s an actual niche that people want to see filled. That remains to be seen.

Anyway, one of the more intriguing devices I spotted at CES was a barely-functional 10 inch tablet from MSI. It sported an NVIDIA Tegra 2 chipset, which means that the low power device should get decent battery life while surfing the web, playing games, reading books, or watching HD video. The MSI tablet was hardly the only device fitting this description on display at the show, but MSI has made a pretty good name for itself by pumping out quality netbooks, video cards, and other products in the last few years, so I actually believe that this tablet has a decent chance of making it to market.

And according to DigiTimes, the MSI tablet will hit the streets in the second half of 2010 for about $500. That’s pretty much the same price as the base model of the Apple iPad. It’s not quite clear how the two devices will stack up on a feature-by-feature basis. We do know that the MSI tablet will run Google Android while the iPad will run the iPhone OS. And the widescreen  MSI tablet will be capable of handling 1080p HD video while the iPad tops out at at 720p video playback on its 1024 x 768 pixel display. I’m also fairly certain that MSI’s device will be able to handle multitasking, and by the time it’s released, Android should be able to support Adobe Flash.

But there are still a few question marks about storage, memory, and wireless connectivity options.

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11 replies on “MSI tablet coming this year for $500”

  1. When I the iPad was first announced officially and the specs and features were made known, I scoffed. I wanted the idea of an iPad, but the actual implementation was severely lacking. This thing looks almost perfect on the other hand. I’d prefer Maemo or Moblin for something like this personally, but Android is an acceptable compromise. It looks like it will have everything else that the iPad doesn’t. I’m still waiting for more details about this thing, but so far it’s looking like almost exactly what I wanted from a tablet. Sorry Apple, you should have done better than an iPod Touch for giants.

  2. We don’t want no stinking tablets or ebook readers.(At least I don’t)
    I guess will see if they sell or not. I don’t see any reason to buy a product that a netbook can already do. I would only spend my money on a real book, there won’t be any such thing as a second hand ebook!
    My money is to valuable to waste, and there not cheap either.

  3. I would be much more likely to buy this than the iPad – even if it were $499 – the same price as the iPad. Looks to me like this thing has a webcam – also, I can probably install whatever OS and/or programs I want. Plus, I’d say it’s a safe bet that this thing has at least one USB port and maybe even a card reader….

    See where I’m going with this? The iPad SUCKS.

  4. This looks like a really nice tablet and I think Android is a good choice. I wonder if the next one will use Chrome OS though which would be a nice as well. Android has a nice amount of apps for it, and a easy to use interface. At $500 with Tegra 2, 1080p and all the bells and whistles, this should give the ipad a run for its money.

  5. I still think the way to go is a light weight clam-shell design with a tablet mode where teh screen twists and lies flat. Best of both worlds!

    In the end Apples deals and backend store are what gives them an advanatge…but their weakness ironicly is the hardware. And if someone woudl step up teh better hardware we did see at CES could be matched up with other deals. There merely needs to be the will on someone’s part to do their own hardware but also WORK to make constent deals as hard as Apple has for the iPad.

    1. It’s sad that the iPad is based on a custom chip. If it was based on Tegra, people could hackintosh their tablet and get freer and cheaper hardware on which they could run Apple’s superior OS.

  6. Tablets everywhere!
    Of course, Android is way better than iPhone OS: Full HD, Flash (hope so) and user side tweaks.
    Let’s see what’s coming.

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