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Gadgets -Dell's Streak Set to Arrive in the U.S. - But When?

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July 08, 2010

Dell's Streak Set to Arrive in the U.S. - But When?

By Susan J. Campbell
TMCnet Contributing Editor
Don’t you just love new gadgets? If you are like most of the mobile consumer population, you do and you are excited to know how Dell (News - Alert) plans to compete in the tablet market. A recent Wired post takes a look and we’re sharing the details here.


Dubbed the Streak, Dell’s new tablet is expected to arrive in the United States this summer. Here we are past the 4th – which many of us consider the middle of the season – and we have yet to see the debut. Britain saw the device arrive last month and while AT&T (News - Alert) is expected to make it available to Americans for $500, the device remains unseen.

Reports from the company say they have the device in testing with plans to make it available for U.S. consumers soon, although exact availability is anyone’s guess. Lucky for us, Gadget Labs had the opportunity to take a hands-on look at the U.S. version of the new device.  

The new Streak is roughly 30 percent thinner than the iPhone (News - Alert) 3G S and while it is positioned as a tablet, it does have the option of a SIM card to allow for phone calls. In addition to 3G connectivity, the Streak also offers a 1-GHz Qualcomm (News - Alert) Snapdragon processor.

“The 3.5-inch-to-4-inch screen devices are optimized primarily around the phone experience,” says Kevin Andrew, product manager for Dell, in Wired.”The Streak is for those who want something bigger than a phone but not something so big they have to carry it separately.”

This ultrathin and lightweight device is designed to be easy to use. Its 5-inch display is described as as a little bigger than the last round of Android (News - Alert) smartphones, but much smaller than the iPad display, which boasts 9.7 inches.

Some may consider this an awkward position for the Streak – too big to be a phone, too little for a tablet. Yet reviews report the display looks better than it sounds and is smooth, responsive and big enough for comfortable typing.

The device is ultrathin to slip easily into a pocket without feeling awkward. With one 30-pin connector and no USB port, the Streak runs Android 1.6, which happens to be an earlier version of the OS and not the latest.

The Streak supports as many as six home screens, has a 5-megapixel camera on the back and 0.3-megapixel VGA videocam on the front. Photos are easily shared and the process is familiar for Android users. An accessory dock with HDMI output allows for TV connection.

The big question will be – is this a phone to compete with the iPhone 4G or a tablet to compete with the iPad? If Dell doesn’t define this for us, it may be more difficult to drive adoption. For those die-hard Apple fans, a comparison report would be interesting.




 

Susan J. Campbell is a contributing editor for TMCnet and has also written for eastbiz.com. To read more of Susan’s articles, please visit her columnist page.

Edited by Marisa Torrieri

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