There's been no shortage of Android tablets in recent months, many little more than PMP hardware repurposed for MID duties with a copy of the Google OS; rarer are models based on the speedy ARM Cortex A8 technology as used in the iPad's Apple A4 CPU or Samsung's Hummingbird. We're curious, then, about the Nationite MIDnite (a WITS A81-E rebadge), packing a 600MHz Texas Instruments OMAP3 3530 core with a 7-inch touchscreen, Android 2.2 and access to the Android Market, despite a sub-$200 preorder price.
Video demo after the cut
At a figure like that, something has to give, and as you might expect the touchscreen is first in line. The display runs at 800 x 480 WVGA, but uses a resistive, single-touch panel rather than the more fashionable capacitive screens we're used to these days. Meanwhile there's WiFi b/g rather than b/g/n, and the 3,000mAh battery falls short of the iPad's runtimes: MP4Nation estimate 5-6hrs with WiFi turned on, or 7-10hrs with it turned off. Finally there's also no Bluetooth or HDMI output.
Nonetheless, you're still getting plenty for your money. The up-to-date OS is impressive alone (and Nationite are encouraging ROM hacks rather than attempting to lock it down), while memory includes 256MB of RAM and 2GB of flash storage; a microSD slot takes up to 16GB cards. There's also a 3.5mm headphone jack, integrated speakers and a USB Host port (for plugging in a keyboard or a memory stick), and the list of supported video types (MKV (H.264 HP)/RMVB/MPEG-4/FLV/MPEG-1/MPEG-2 up to 720p) is more impressive than most Android smartphones we've seen of late.
Best of all is the fact that there's a firm ship date attached: August 23rd. If you order before end of play this coming Monday you can have it for $199.50 (worldwide shipping included); after it launches it'll be $219.50. Anyone tempted?