Introducing, The Touchbook

Engadget posted a story about a new Netbook from a company called Always Innovating. A press release about the product can be found here. In short, it’s a netbook, and a tablet PC, but without the typical “fold it over on top of the keyboard” scenario. The screen literally detaches from the keyboard and becomes an autonomous unit.

Inside this little beast is an ARM OMAP3 processor with 8 Gig of storage on a micro SD chip. They don’t specify which OMAP3 processor is included, so both speed and die size is unknown. It touts an 8.9″ screen, typical of the current netbook generation. For network access it has 802.11b/g/n Wifi. Bluetooth is also included, so the possibility of tethering exists as well.
Both the tablet and keyboard have built-in batteries. Battery life is expected to be 10 to 15 hours when both the tablet and keyboard are used in-concert. The tablet is expected to last between 3 and 5 hours on battery when it is disconnected from the keyboard. Battery life in the keyboard is, of course, irrelevant.

Always Innovating demonstrated the Touchbook at DEMO 2009, a technical conference that wrapped up yesterday. The demonstration video is included below:

Overall, this looks to be a fairly decent device. I’m a bit concerned about the ARM processor, and I wonder what sort of OS support it will have. The TouchBook OS will be installed by default, though from reading the FAQs, it appears that it will run anything from Android, to Ubuntu, to Windows CE.

I’m also curious as to what the device will be using for memory. Is memory shared on the SD card? Or will there be actual RAM in the device? All questions I hope to have answers for in the near future. Looks good, though, and I’m excited at the prospect of possibly getting one. Definitely something I could put to good use!


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