Hannspree's Android 3.0 Honeycomb tablet, the SN10T3, isn't expected to hit the market until Q3 2011, but the company had the freshly-released SN10T1 on show here at IFA 2011 today. Based around a 10.1-inch 1024 x 600 touchscreen and NVIDIA's Tegra 2 processor, the slate may run Android 2.2 Froyo but it's well hidden under a custom UI. Still, that decision has left the SN10T1 missing a few key features which may take some of the shine off of its low price tag.
Video demo after the cut
Perhaps the biggest issue is the absence of Android Market support. The SN10T1 is preloaded with AndroidPIT's App Center, an alternative download store, but since the Hannspree doesn't tick all of Google's check-boxes for phone functionality it can't have the official Android Market. Meanwhile, because it falls short of the 1280 x 800 display (and twin cameras) that Android 3.0 Honeycomb mandates, it can't run the tablet-centric OS either.
So, the experience falls short of what you get with, say, a Motorola XOOM, but instead you get a significantly lower price tag of around €349 ($505). Build is reasonably chunky and fairly high quality, all plastic and no metal, though the SN10T1 certainly falls well short when it comes to the current race to be the slimmest slate.
Hannspree SN10T1 hands-on:
TapTap's custom UI actually does a solid job of reskinning Froyo for tablet use, with chunky icons, a completely reworked Settings UI, browser - with Flash Player support - that feels more like a desktop app, and a new split-layout keyboard. No 3G inside, but you do get WiFi and Bluetooth; unfortunately the connection wasn't working so we couldn't benchmark the slate.
Those looking for the very latest - and most complete - Android experience will probably find a Honeycomb tablet more to their liking but, as we've seen with the Advent Vega, there's plenty of interest in the budget section of the market if the price is right. Hannspree has already said it will be bringing the SN10T1 to the US, and that sort of broader availability will definitely work in the tablet's favor.