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ViewSonic announces ViewPad 4, promises Gingerbread

ViewSonic adds to its growing stable of ViewPads with this 4.1-inch device.

ViewSonic pegs the ViewPad 4 as equal parts phone and tablet. ViewSonic

ViewSonic Europe is in Barcelona this week where it's showing off the latest addition to its ViewPad family.

Joining its 7-inch and 10-inch siblings, the 4.1-inch ViewPad 4 is expected to be on the short list of Android devices running Android 2.3 Gingerbread when it debuts. Currently listed on ViewSonic's Web site as having Android 2.2, the hardware-maker promises an update to Gingerbread in the near future, and says it will demonstrate the device to key partners with Gingerbread in April.

In terms of user experience, ViewSonic has integrated its own custom user interface, ViewScene, which takes advantage of the GPS functionality to adapt home screens. Users will be able to create a home screen with apps and widgets that changes based on location, ensuring fantasy football and Facebook don't clutter up that work phone when the boss is around.

The hardware reads much like today's top smartphones, with a Qualcomm MSM 8255 1GHz processor, a 5-megapixel camera, and a VGA front-facing camera for video chat. Other details include 2GB ROM and 512MB RAM, as well as support for Wi-Fi (802.11 b/g/n), GPS, Bluetooth 2.1, and mini-HDMI output.

Although it carries the ViewPad branding, this device resembles a phone more than a tablet, but that's not how ViewSonic perceives it. Reading through the specs and details (PDF) on its Web site, ViewSonic talks about the unit as if its screen were considerably larger than its 4.1 inches.