Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Where are the iPad Competitors? The Streak is NOT one!

Four months has passed since the iPad was made available to customers and still no competitor has surfaced. Sure there are always the Chinese clones making it's way unto the web and there a few devices hacked to run unofficial versions of Android, but we have yet to see any real product come to market. There are speculations and rumors from HP/Palm, Google, Acer and a whole lot of other companies, but nothing is available for purchase. The tech blogs and news organizations are so hungry for iPad competition that some are drawing at straws. The latest straw is the Dell Streak.

The following is from Wikipedia

"The Streak (previously known as the Mini 5) is a Tablet/Smartphone hybrid from Dell that uses the Android operating system. It comes with a 5" capacitive touchscreen and two cameras, a 5MP one with dual-LED flash on the back and a VGA-resolution one on the front for video calling; both are capable of video. It was discovered in October 2009 that the tablet is also capable of making 3G phone calls.

The three buttons at the bottom (or right, when held in its normal landscape mode) are capacitive. The Android buttons used are Home, Menu, and Back. It features a Dell skin on top and has a cradle adapter with HDMI out. The phone lacks the FM radio and navigational trackball found in other Android devices. The versions released to date have Android 1.6 installed, although Dell promised an update to Android 2.2(froyo) later in 2010.

While unconfirmed by Dell, rumors have surfaced regarding development of 7-inch and 10-inch models. The 7-inch model is expected to launch in late 2010 and the 10-inch model in early 2011."

The Dell website provides this information.

"The perfectly sized, go-anywhere device; Watch, listen, play and connect with a 5" high-quality screen that fits perfectly in your hands.

Take good times with you, wherever you go. A brilliant 5" screen lets you surf, watch videos and stay connected, with less squinting and pinching, plus front-and-back cameras capture photos and videos on the fly with 5MP resolution. Watch streaming video on YouTube (TM), then post your own movies directly from your Streak.

With compact 6" wide x 3.1" high x .4" thin dimensions, there's plenty of space to take full advantage of the multi-touch display, plus the high-quality scratch-resistant Gorilla® glass means your view stays crystal clear. Ultra-intelligent facial proximity and ambient light sensors automatically adjust screen brightness, optimizing your battery life.

The Dell Streak ensures that you can multitask and play without delay (including music and games), with the powerful yet efficient 1GHz Qualcomm SnapdragonTM processor speeding things along using Google's Android-based OS with multi-touch Dell user experience. 3G mobile broadband, WiFi and Bluetooth® mean you've always got an easy way to connect, while swappable microSD memory cards mean virtually limitless storage for movies, music and pictures — up to 42 movies, 32,000 photos or 16,000 songs on each of your individual 32GB memory cards.

Where are you headed today? Find the quickest route with real-time maps from integrated A-GPS and e-compass functionality. Text-to-voice and turn-by-turn directions let you keep your eyes on the road, while Google Maps' live traffic functionality helps you avoid those dreaded red zones (requires 3G connection). The best part: The Streak multitasks, so you can play your favorite driving tunes and receive calls at the same time.

Facebook® , TwitterTM , Gmail, a phone call — however you like to stay connected5, the Streak keeps the lines of communication open. The Streak is a full-function 3G phone with IM and SMS/text capabilities, plus you can take photos for sharing using the rear-facing camera with dual-LED flash. Integrated real-time Facebook and Flickr® upload abilities put your photo or video online in no time."

After reading the description, viewing the Youtube videos and examining the technical specifications, I cannot see how any techno-savvy person would compare this to the Apple iPad. This is device is more comparable to the Apple iPhone or the Samsung Evo from Sprint, but not anywhere near the iPad. My Palm Pre can do a lot of what the iPad can do, but I would never put them in the same category or consider them competitors.

It is true that the iPad is like a larger pre 4.0 iPhone or iPod Touch, because of their similarities in functionality, but the huge screen of the iPad makes it a totally different device than the similar devices that can fit in your pocket (the Dell Streak barely can do that). I do hope that some real competition does arrive soon as it helps to bring better products to market. The Apple iPhone and Apple iPad are the by-products of the healthy fighting between Palm OS and Windows Mobile devices of the past. Those products of the past have paved the way for toady's mobile devices. Apple also benefits from faster and more affordable Mobile Internet plans that weren't available, multitouch screen technology and other factors that were not present just a few years back. Will these other companies make the proper adjustments and finally put out a competitive product? I hope so.


Carl W. Brooks
iAmThereforeiPad, Founder and Chief Editor

iPad News, Reviews and How-To-Dos.
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