CrunchPad Shipping Soon?

10 Apr, 2009





Update: More pics at the end of the post.

Update 2: More bigger pics.

Update 3: From CrunchGear Look at the end of the post.
Update 4: Look at end of the post.
Update 5: From TC Look at the end of the post.

Seems like TechCrunch’s “Crunchpad” the web wifi enabled tablet is coming soon according to this pic (Update: Arrington removed the pic) on posterous.com tweeted by scobleizer:

Crunchpad is a low cost touch screen web tablet which will be sold  for around $299 according to  Michael Arrington founder of TechCrunch (TC).

The device began development around 10 months ago after Michael Arrington wanted a “dead simple and dirt cheap touch screen web tablet to surf the web” and found that no company was developing such a device.”

The device is a webtop that uses the browser as the “OS” that means it relies heavily on software-as-a-service (SaaS) applications which allows it to use low cost hardware.  Detailed specifications according to TC’s last post :

  • 12-inch touchscreen with a 4:3 aspect ratio. 
  • Single-point touchscreen. 
  • Via Nano processor. 
  • 1 GB of ram. 
  • 4 GB flash drive (To store the OS and browser and any cache.)
  • 1024×768 resolution .
  • Wifi.
  • Accelerometer. 
  • VGA Camera.
  • 4-Cell Battery .
  • Dimensions: 12.5″ x 9.7″ x 1.3″ (
  • Weight: 3 lbs .
  • Software: Full install of Ubuntu Linux on the prototype with a custom Webkit browser (TC said they will be “stipping linux down to its core in the next internal release” to improve speed/decrease resources needed & improve battery life.)
  • Ports: Power, Headset, 1 usb (for plugging in external keyboard if needed.)
  • Boot time: 10 seconds from cold boot.

Below you can see CrunchPad Prototype B videos, I just hope multi touch will be available on the final shipped version. In any case it seems like Sun Microsystems’s vision of “The Network is the Computer” is being brought to the consumer market by a blog which hired part-timers to put things together.




Update: Arrington has removed the pics from his posterous account however Stammy has some more:

Update 2 more bigger pics via  Dustin Curtis:

 

Update 3: TC is not very happy with the leaks, (I asked Arrington if he wants me to take the pics out immediately after publishing, but no response) CrunchGear said “prototype is equipped with an Intel Atom processor and a 12″ capacitative touchscreen”, with more “disclosure during the next week, along with video of the new text input and all that other good stuff.” which means it might be multi-touch.
Update 4: I forgot to disclose that ArabCrunch is not affiliated with TechCrunch.

Update 5: Michael Arrington said on TC:”The key uses: Internet consumption. The virtual keyboard will make data entry a pain other than for entering credentials, quick searches and maybe light emails.” which hints that CrunchPad won’t be Multi-touch.

It can be used for:

“This machine isn’t for data entry. But it is for reading emails and the news, watching videos on Hulu, YouTube, etc., listening to streaming music on MySpace Music and imeem, and doing video chat via tokbox.”

Latest Hardware specs:

“The hardware would consist of netbook appropriate chipsets (Intel Atom or Via Nano), at least a 12 inch screen, a camera for photos and video, speakers and a microphone. Add a single USB port, power in and sound out”

Price:

“it can be built for less than $250”but they can sell for $300.

Who led the effort:

“That effort was led by Louis Monier, with software developed by Singapore-based Fusion Garage and industrial design work by by David Yarnell and Greg Lalier from Dynacept.”

Where do things stand?

“Well, I’m not ready to say yet. But one thing I’ve learned about hardware in the last year is that you need partners to actually make things happen, and the credit for what we saw today goes entirely to the Fusion Garage team. Those guys are rock stars.”

Whether the gadget leaks were accidental or in purpose it provided a great PR buzz for the device. As for it’s pricing the real cost is in the after sales support, So there are 2 questions: how they gona handle support? Dell Style (web and phone)? And how they gona do sales? Web and resellers? I think in the next week we will know.

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