Samsung has taken the wraps off the Series 7 Slate, a business-friendly Windows tablet that closely resembles the Android-based tablets that are proving popular with consumers.
There are several tablets that run Windows 7, such as Asus's Eee Slate EP121, but the 11.6-inch Series 7 Slate is relatively light and trim. Samsung quietly announced its latest Windows tablet at the IFA technology show in Berlin on Thursday, shortly after unveiling its more consumer-oriented Galaxy Tab 7.7 and Galaxy Note Android tablets.
"The Samsung Series 7 Slate PC was designed for on-the-go users who need a slim, lightweight computer but can't afford to sacrifice true PC functionality," Samsung's enterprise mobile PC marketing chief, Scott Ledterman, said in a statement.
The Series 7 Slate runs Windows 7 either in the standard mode (pictured) or using a grid of smartphone-like icons that Samsung developed with Microsoft. The upcoming Windows 8 will be better optimised for touch than Windows 7 is at present.
Samsung has included the Swype virtual keyboard on the Series 7 Slate. In ZDNet UK's hands-on experience, however, the keyboard did not automatically pop up when the user wanted to type something in a field. It had to be brought up separately, which was not optimal.
The Series 7 Slate comes with two important accessories in the box: a Bluetooth keyboard and a dock, which adds Ethernet connectivity to the device.
The dock can also be used to hook the tablet up to a larger monitor, if that should prove necessary.
The tablet comes with a stylus, based on Wacom's technology. As the slate is a Windows device with an Intel Core i5 processor, this makes hand-drawn graphical work in programs such as Adobe Illustrator viable.
As can be seen in this picture, the Series 7 Slate is thin for a Windows tablet with Core i5 innards.
The tablet is 13mm thick and weighs around 900g, which points to its use of a solid-state drive (SSD) — either 64GB or 128GB — rather than a traditional hard drive. The screen has a resolution of 1366 x 768 pixels. The device uses Intel's most recent integrated graphics technology, which is far more capable than earlier versions.
In common with Samsung's 9 Series ultrabook, the screen has a high-end brightness of 400 nits and a wide viewing angle of 170 degrees.
Samsung says the Series 7 Slate has a battery life of up to seven hours.
As can be seen here, the Windows tablet has a SIM slot, and connectivity options include HSPA, WiMax and 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi. The tablet also has a full-size USB port, an integrated microphone and two cameras — a two-megapixel camera on the front, and a three-megapixel counterpart on the rear.
The device will go on sale in October. US pricing ranges from $1,099 (£680) to $1,349, depending on configuration. A Samsung spokesperson told ZDNet UK that UK pricing is not finalised yet, but the Series 7 Slate will cost in the region of £1,000.
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