At CES 2011, I was able to get a glimpse of the future of tablets, netbooks, and laptops. And that? Is probably like the Atrix 4G smartphone which allows you to dock your Android smartphone on an LCD/keyboard combo.
No, but we are not there yet. Even as fast as Tegra 2 processors are, I think it will be another 1-2 years before it can be considered practical. It’s great technology, about a year too early.
BUT, what is interesting is that now tablets, netbooks, and laptops are adopting sliding keyboards that were traditionally used on smartphones like the Droid 2 and G2 Phone as an example.
I think this is a really an awesome idea because it allows your laptop to be used as a tablet touchscreen device and slide out the keyboard only when you really need it, to write long e-mails, work on presentations, or write a long blog post like this one. Certainly, I couldn’t make this type of blog post on a touchscreen device alone, nevermind a smartphone.
One of the highlights of the CES 2011 show was Samsung’s Sliding PC 7, which is a Windows 7 based laptop that allow you to use it as a tablet device (like an iPad) or as a laptop simply by sliding out the keyboard.
Samsung Sliding PC 7 Specs
The Samsung Sliding PC 7 features a 10-inch 1366×768 resolution screen, Intel Atom Oak Trail 1.6-GHz processor, 2GB DDR2 RAM, 1.3MP webcam, and around 9 hours of battery life.
At 2.18 pounds of weights, this 10-inch sliding beast certainly is lighter than any netbooks out on the market while a bit heavier than tablet-only devices like an iPad.
The Samsung Sliding PC 7 isn’t for everyone, it’s for that niche group of users who are looking for a good marriage between a netbook and a tablet device.
Personally, I don’t like carrying any type of mobile device without a keyboard including my Droid 2 and G2 smartphone, both of which have sliding keyboards. I also have an ASUS Eee PC netbook that is only 3 pounds but the form factor is a bit bulky and I don’t like carrying it with me everywhere.
But this Sliding PC 7 does solve that problem, it’s much lighter/thinner than my ASUS Eee PC netbook and will let me do some mobile blogging anywhere I go.
What it’s definitely not going to do is replace my Intel Core i7 laptop, which I use for 1080P HD video rendering. But for everything else, I think the Sliding PC 7 could be the answer, only if the price is right.
On the other hand, there’s also the ASUS Eee Pad Slider Android tablet that also comes with a keyboard, I am leaning towards that one but I do prefer Windows 7 for Photoshop and other desktop applications which Android cannot fully do (yet).
Still, I think Samsung Sliding PC 7 is a great move on Samsung’s part of innovating their netbook/notebooks. Instead of letting their netbook market die, Samsung has rejuvenated the netbook/tablet design and have got people got excited.
The Samsung Sliding PC 7 should be available in March 2011 in 2 months at around $699 (or I hope around $499 or less).