Intel's MeeGo tablet demo looks great, but will there be enough apps?

Nokia's decision to downgrade MeeGo to an experimental long-term 'project' might seem like the death knell for the next-gen OS, but Intel seemingly has other ideas, showing off an impressive demo.

Is MeeGo dead in the water now Nokia has fallen in love with Windows Phone 7 for its smart phones? Partner Intel has been doing its utmost to dispel the doomsayers at Mobile World Congress, showing off an impressively slick demo of MeeGo-powered tablet software.

It showcases a swipe'n'tap interface flicking between friends, music, photos and other content, while swiping down to access more information, and tap-holding to trigger pop-up menus for more actions. It's very visual, and in the demo video at least, appears to be running like a dream.

Intel's MWC press release is certainly putting a brave face on Nokia's retreat, claiming that MeeGo has made "great strides" since the OS' announcement a year ago, during which time it has "gained strong industry momentum with software vendors, system integrators and operators, as well as OEMs and products shipping today in multiple form factors, including netbooks, tablet, set-top boxes and in-vehicle infotainment systems in cars."

That's as maybe, but the big question is whether app and game developers will persist with MeeGo, rather than switching their attention to Windows Phone 7 or Android , both of which now promise quicker rewards as they find their way into tens of millions of smart phones and tablets.

"Our MeeGo tablet user experience shows the power and flexibility of MeeGo, and by adding new developer tools and programs we will accelerate our tablet strategy and MeeGo ecosystem momentum to enable faster time-to-market with innovative products for OEMs and service providers alike," says Intel's SVP and general manager of software and services Renée James.

Like we said, brave face. Intel's video demo (embedded below) certainly shows MeeGo has the potential to hold its own with iOS, Android, webOS and RIM's QNX when it comes to tactile tablet thrills. The big question is when we'll actually be able to buy a MeeGo-powered tablet, and whether there'll be enough apps available to showcase its capabilities.


 

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