Watch out iPad, PalmPad Is Drawing a Bead

While it pains me to quote, credit, or otherwise refer to FoxNews, it appears as though they’ve got their hands on some rather tasty exclusive information.  It looks as though Palm (HP) is joining the rest of the mobile community and jumping head-long into the tablet throng with not one, but four PalmPad tablet devices.  According to Fox (shudder), Palm plans to unveil three of the four devices at CES 2011, the fourth of which is to be directed at University students will be announced at a later time.  Minor hardware differences will separate the four devices in the PalmPad line, hit the link to see what we know so far.

Of the four devices, three are confirmed to be running the as of yet unreleased WebOS version 2.5.1.  The PalmPad will predictably be available on Sprint, and is happily blessed with a 4G radio (you hear that Galaxy Tab?!). Sprint’s WiMAX service offers a sizeable enough downstream to enjoy high-quality streaming video, which would go great with the included mini-HDMI port on Palm’s tablet (no dongle required).  Another welcome feature is the inclusion of two cameras, a front-facing 1.3 megapixel camera and a rear-facing 3.0 megapixel camera, both sporting an LED flash or two.  Keeping with the times, HP had the foresight to include a USB 3.0 device.

The PalmPad is set to give the iPad body image issues with it’s thinner, sleeker chassis.  Weighing in at 1.25lbs, the PalmPad is also said to be slightly skinnier than Apple’s juggernaut. Only the screen size for the University version is mentioned in the article, giving a diagonal measurement of 8.9″.  HP plans on partnering with Universities to deliver internal educational software on the mobile device, designing all elements to fall within the University’s individual requirements.  HP aims to let students at these devices by the fall semester, 2011.

The rest of the specifications are sparse, Fox calls them “nearly identical” to the iPad, whatever that means.  Check back for updates as information comes in!

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