From the outside, the Samsung Series 7 Slate PC might look like any other tablet on the market, but it's packed with a laptop processor and is running the desktop version of Windows 7.
Most tablets -- such as the iPad or Samsung Galaxy Tab -- are found running on smaller, less power-hungry processors, whereas the Slate PC is packing an Intel Core i5 chip, which you'd normally find in mid-range laptops. Add on to that 4GB of RAM and you've got a seriously specced-out bit of kit.
So why on Earth would you want Windows 7 on a tablet? Well, that's a good question, and one that I immediately posed to myself when it landed in my hands. It seems somewhat contrary to the easy operation of popular tablets -- instead of big, pokeable icons like you'd find on the iPad, you get the standard Windows desktop and Start menu.
After a while though, things start to make sense. If -- like me -- you're used to the classic Windows environment and file system, then you'll be instantly at home organising your files and installing programs exactly in the way you normally would on your desktop. The powerful processor lets you chug through your work without hesitation and the extremely responsive 11.6-inch touchscreen -- together with the optional stylus -- provides swift navigation.
Although it's a tablet, it's best not to see the Slate PC as a competitor to other tablets. It doesn't have the iOS or Android app stores and it doesn't offer the same stripped-down interface, so for quick media on the go, it's not going to be ideal. However, I perched it on my desk in the luxurious CNET UK offices, plugged in a mouse and keyboard and could get on with my work as quickly as ever.
Even better, at quitting time, all I needed to do was unplug the peripherals and I could take my work with me and finish some bits and bobs while riding the tube home.
Sure, it's not as user-friendly as the iPad, but if your needs are more office-focused then it might be worth checking out. Of course, with