Best of the IFA Announcements
Lenovo IdeaPad A1
There were many tablets at IFA Berlin including the Toshiba AT200, the Galaxy Tab 7.7, and two Sony tablets, but Lenovo captured the hearts and minds of many with a 7-inch Android-powered device that will sell for just $200.
The IdeaPad Tablet A1 comes with 2GB onboard storage (other models will have more storage), a microSD card slot with support for up to 32GB, a micro-USB port, a 1GHz Cortex A8 processor, and 1024-pixel-by-600-pixel resolution. The bad news is the A1 is preloaded with Android 2.3 (Gingerbread) and not the tablet-specific Android 3.2 Honeycomb OS. The A1 launches in late September.
The Titan is HTC's high end Mango-powered Windows Phone 7. This sleek phone has a 4.7-inch display with a 480 pixel-by-800-pixel resolution, a 1.5 GHz processor, 16GB of storage, 512MB of RAM and an 8-megapixel camera. Phone 7's Mango update features new additions to Microsoft's smartphone platform, including third-party multitasking, personalized live tiles, and more HTML 5 support for Internet Explorer mobile.
The Titan will hit Europe and Asia in October. U.S. availability was not announced.
Sony Adds S + P
Sony finalized its Android tablet plans, announcing the Honeycomb-based Tablet S and Tablet P slates. The Tablet S has a 9.4-inch screen, a 1GHz Nvidia Tegra 2 processor, and either 16GB or 32GB storage.
The Tablet S is shaped like a wedge, which, Sony argues, will make it easier to view when sitting. The Tablet P has two 5.5-inch screens, 4GB of storage and the same Nvidia Tegra 2 chip as the Tablet S. Both devices have a 0.3 front-facing camera and a 5 megapixel rear-facing camera.
The Tablet S is available now starting at $500, the Tablet P ships in November.
LG Pentouch TV
LG showed a line of touchscreen television sets collectively called PentouchTV. The sets are not finger touchscreens--instead, they rely on a special stylus that lets you manipulate apps on LG's 50- or 60-inch PZ850 plasma TV. LG says you can use Pentouch to access files created on a PC or draw right on the screen. You can also use two styluses at once on the screen. A problem we see with this TV is that it needs to be connected to a PC to access the Internet or access files.
Toshiba Portege Z830 Ultrabook
Toshiba announced the first sub-$1,000 Ultrabook at IFA, despite Intel's claim earlier this year that ultrabooks wouldn't break the thousand-dollar barrier.
The Portege Z830 has a 13.3-inch display, supports up to a Core i7 processor, and uses a 128GB solid state drive. Toshiba's Ultrabook is 0.63-inches deep and weigh less than 2.5 pounds. The device hits store shelves in November.
Toshiba AT200 Tablet
Toshiba's follow-up to the Thrive will be a 10.1-inch Honeycomb-based tablet called the AT200 that is just 0.3 inches thick. The device has a 1.2GHz processor, 1280-pixel-by-800-pixel resolution, and includes micro-USB and micro-HDMI ports, a microSD slot, 802.11 Wi-Fi, and Bluetooth capability.
A U.S. launch date has not been announced, and it's not clear if the device's specs will change when it lands on American shores.
Samsung Galaxy Note
The device features a 1.4 GHz dual-core processor, a Super AMOLED display with 1280-pixel-by-800 -pixel resolution, 1GB of RAM, an 8-megapixel rear-facing camera, a 2-megapixel front-facing camera, and 16GB or 32GB of storage. The Galaxy Note also comes with a stylus. Availability was not announced.
Sony Android Walkman
Sony showed an Android-powered Walkman at IFA Berlin called the Walkman Mobile Entertainment Player. The device has a 4.3-inch screen with 800-pixel-by-640-pixel resolution and can play music, games, access the Web, and access the Android Market for apps.
The device is only in the prototype phase so pricing and availability were not announced.
Photo: Courtesy of Cnet
Although not an official product, Ford was showing off an interesting Internet-connected concept car called the Ford Evos. The Evos would be able to make decisions based on driver preferences, such as automatically adjusting the temperature in the driving compartment.
The car could (in theory) also close the garage door for you, turn off your houselights, and provide up-to-date information on weather, traffic, and driving conditions.
Sony Futuristic 3D Head-Mounted Display
Sony showed a prototype of its head-mounted 3D display in January during the Consumer Electronics Show earlier this year. At IFA Berlin, Sony added a name to the device, Personal 3D Viewer and the company said it will be available by the end of the year, although perhaps only in Japan.
The device can be connected to a camcorder or used to view movies or video games and gives you the illusion of viewing a 62.5-foot screen at a distance of 65 feet. Pricing will reportedly be around $800.