Samsung have confirmed that they'll be among the rivals throwing their tablet hat into the ring and taking on Apple's iPad this year. Criticising the iPad for its shortcomings in connectivity and processing power, Philip Newton, director of Samsung Australia's IT division, said that any tablet that his company would produce would offer "PC grade" connections and grunt. Meanwhile Emmanuele Silanesu, national product and marketing manager, revealed that the unnamed tablet would see a release in the second half of 2010, and have a consumer focus.
That would distinguish the upcoming slate from Samsung's own Q1 UMPC, which Silanesu concedes "wasn't an attractive device for consumers". "The Q1 was a very niche product for a vertical market, it wasn’t a consumer product" he told APC, "it was limited (in functionality), the price was relatively high."
"The smartphone will become a secondary device, like a smartphone now is and like the PDA was ... But there is the ability for a slate-based product to become a primary device in terms of its processing power and IO. That’s where I think we could get critical mass in having a product which could become your primary device – one you could take to university and do a PowerPoint presentation on it, for example, or a device that could be taken home or to the office and docked" Emmanuele Silanesu, national product and marketing manager, Samsung Australia
However Samsung are remaining tight-lipped on potential specifications for the upcoming slate, though they've been dropping hints that they're looking to Intel's Atom platform rather than ARM chipsets. The company apparently plans to pave the way for the tablet with their ebook reader range, describing those devices as "the beginning of a very long story".