CNET First Look
Stantum Prototype tablet (Dell Mini 10)This proof-of-concept tablet can handle up to 10-finger inputs at once.
[ Music ] ^M00:00:03 >> I'm Dan Ackerman, and we are here talking tablets today, back at CES 2010. One of the more interesting announcements was Dell said they were working on a concept tablet or slate device. The one they showed off with a five-inch device, it seemed really more like a smartphone than like a tablet PC, but everyone was very interested in it. I've actually got in my hands right here a ten-inch Dell tablet device. And you may say, "I didn't know Dell was working on a ten-inch tablet." Well, they're not. This is actually a prototype built by a French company named Stanton [phonetic] that is in the Mobitouch technology and display business. What they've done is they've taken a standard mini-ten Dell netbook, taken it apart, taken off the keyboard, taken off the display, put on their own ten-inch resistive touch screen, and just made it one big kind of flat package like this, like a little slate. And they're saying, "Hey, if you're interested in Mobitouch technology, well, here's how you can put it together like this in a netbook form factor." So it works pretty much like any other touch screen machine would. You can launch your web browser, you can take your finger and scroll up and down like that, and you don't -- we were surprised that the touch part of it worked as well as it did, because this is a netbook with an old Z520 processor, which is not really the fastest of the Atom processors. We expected much more sluggish performance. You can actually hold down your finger and get a right-click on the screen like that, and Stanton says their technology will actually let you do up to ten inputs if you wanted to and have some sort of crazy, all-your-fingers touch screen stuff going on. We did more normal stuff, like surfing the web, or they have a couple of demos built in. So besides the touch-screen hardware, this basically just uses Windows 7's built-in touch and tablet functionality, like the built-in keyboard, like that. And there are a lot of apps that really work well for touch screen; some apps maybe not so much. One thing we found really interesting was you can actually get the Kindle app for PC now. So we went in here and we went to the screen resolution settings and we rotated the display, and then we launched our Kindle app. And then you can go into a book and flip through it. And unlike your actual Kindle, you can actually just take your finger and flip through the pages just like that. It actually worked really well; we can definitely see a little ten-inch tablet like this, like maybe the Apple tablet, being really good for e-book reading. So again, bear in mind this is not a product you're gonna be able to go in the store and buy. It's a prototype built by Stanton to show off their touch-screen technology, in this case, built into a Dell mini-ten. But I bet it's a forerunner of things to come. We'll probably see a lot more touch screens, a lot more slate, and tablets now, devices in 2010, maybe even, of course, you know, the Apple tablet. I'm Dan Ackerman, talking about Stanton's Dell mini-ten prototype touch-screen tablet. ^M00:02:42 [ Music ]