iPad Lookalike Dual-Boots Ubuntu and Windows

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Hard on the heels of the news earlier this month that Taiwanese firm Tenq has an Ubuntu-powered tablet on the way comes word of yet another iPad challenger running Canonical's popular Linux distribution.

It's a dual-booting machine, this time--running both Ubuntu 10.10 and Windows 7--and it's reportedly even closer to being an iPad twin.

Featuring a 9.7-inch screen, the new device is reportedly much thinner than the Tenq machine is, according to a Friday report on Giz-China. It also features a dual-core, 1.6GHz Atom Z530 CPU, 1GB RAM--expandable to 2GB--and an SSD hard drive, reportedly 16GB on the model Giz-China spotted

Compared with Tenq's P07, the new tablet is "based on a design more similar to an iPad," the publication reported.

Shenzhen Ruixin is the manufacturer of the device, Chinese Newpad noted on Thursday. Newpad also features a number of photos of the new tablet.

The Dual-Booting Trend

It's not yet certain whether this dual-booting device will make it to market, of course, as Giz-China points out. What is becoming increasingly certain, however, is the growing interest among tablet makers in the free and open source Ubuntu operating system.

In addition to these two latest tablets, we also saw last fall Augen's dual-booting Gentouch Espresso Doppio, which takes a different approach by dual-booting two Linux-based operating systems: Android 2.2 and Ubuntu.

Dual-booting, I believe, is a growing trend for 2011, and will be seen on an increasing number of devices this year.

A Natural on Tablets

But while Windows has been slow to adapt to ARM and the era of tablets, Linux-based Android has been on the forefront, posing the first real competition to Apple's market-leading iPad.

Now, it's particularly exciting to see Ubuntu stepping up as another mobile-friendly and Linux-based alternative. With its open source nature, its low resources requirements and its free price, Ubuntu may just prove to be the next tablet winner.

Follow Katherine Noyes on Twitter: @Noyesk.

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