Maemo might be evolving into MeeGo, but it's going by a circuitous route that takes in some Archos 5 play along the way, albeit unofficially. A group of Archos tinkerers have been persuading Maemo (in its Mer form) to run on both the Archos 5 Internet Tablet (usually found running Android) and the Archos 5 Internet Media Tablet, and while it's not a perfect implementation it does at least function.
Video demos after the cut
Remember the bizarrely-named Thomson PoMMeS media tablet spotted running the FCC gauntlet back in January? The 8-inch touchscreen tablet has returned with a far more sensible Portable Info Center name and plenty of details; Notebook Italia grabbed some hands-on time with what we're assuming is a potential rival for the Archos 7 Home Tablet.
Video demo after the cut
Given the Archos 7 Home Tablet has been lurking around on Amazon since the beginning of April, it comes as no surprise to hear the French company officially announcing it; still, we'll happily accept a firm shipping date. Priced at $199.99 for the 8GB version of the 7-inch Android-based slate, Amazon say we can expect it from May 17th.
Archos have officially announced their so-called Home Tablets at CeBIT 2010 this week, and there's good news and bad. The Archos 7 Home Tablet and the Archos 8 digital photo frame each run Android, just like the Archos 5, but they have sluggish ARM9 processors rather than any of the more speedy SoC's we've seen on other tablets lately. Archos' trick, though, is in pricing: the two devices are €149 ($203), making them reasonably budget friendly.
Archos have already been pretty upfront about their plans to bring larger versions of their Android-based internet tablet to CeBIT 2010 this week, and according to the show guide they'll slot into the company's new Archos Home Slate category. As tipped before, the tablets will prioritize family activities, such as group email and calendar access, together with the usual tablet fare such as internet access and multimedia.
The Archos 7 looks pretty much to be locked-in for CeBIT in around a week's time, but according to Archos' German PR team the company have a second Android-based internet tablet to bring to the show. CarryPad have heard that two new devices are in the works for the Germany-based show, both described as "good value Android Tablets that are specially designed for use in the home".
Having briefly released and then promptly pulling the last firmware update for the Archos 5 Internet Tablet, the French company have left owners waiting as they tweak the apparent "major issue" in the web browser. Now Archos have tried again, releasing firmware 1.7.33 complete with an update to Android 1.6 Donut for the touchscreen tablet.
Archos have released a new firmware update for the Archos 5 Internet Tablet, v1.6.08, and the key change is the introduction of Android 1.6 "Donut". With the new version of the OS comes the quick-search box for the MID/PMP's homescreen, improved power management, native WVGA display support and VPN functionality; Archos have also tweaked media handling, so that the Archos 5 Internet Tablet better supports H.264 SD and HD videos.
Update: Strangely, all mention of the update - including the firmware itself - has been pulled from Archos' site.
It looks like Dell is planning to release a mobile internet device, or a MID. The details are few and far between but the product—code-named Streak—looks like it packs Wi-Fi, 3G and Android 2.0 all into one. It is exactly what Intel has been calling a mobile internet device for the past few years: larger than a smartphone, primarily for accessing the Net, and featuring multimedia and even GPS functionality. The Archos 5 Internet Tablet and the leaked video of the Dell device gives us a better glimpse of what is to come and what it can do. Ironically (and you will see why later), when I watched the video I immediately thought: ah, so Dell wants to make an iPhone with a larger 5-inch screen!