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Unveiled earlier this year, ViewSonic is finally gearing up to launch its ViewPad 10pro with a release window of late August through mid-September. In a day of iPad clones, it's nice to something even mildly unique, and the 10pro certainly fits the bill. The device is powered by Intel's Oak Trail platform, which includes the new 1.5GHz Atom Z670 processor and supports the ability to run multiple operating systems in a simultaneous fashion.
ViewSonic has taken advantage of that functionality by providing access to both Windows 7 and Android 2.3 Gingerbread. To be clear, the tablet doesn't dual-boot the operating systems in the conventional sense, but Google's mobile OS runs on top of Windows like an application. To quote ViewSonic's own words: "Users need to simply tap on the Android icon to make a seamless switch between business productivity and…entertainment."
Although that will surely attract some shoppers, Windows-based tablets haven't been particularly successful so far and we're not sure why ViewSonic opted for Android 2.3 instead of 3.x Honeycomb, which is specifically designed for tablets and has been available on other devices since February. Beyond Honeycomb, Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich is due sometime toward the close of 2011, and we're not sure if the 10pro will be updated.
Besides Intel's new Oak Trail parts and the dual-OS functionality, the ViewPad 10pro has a typical spec sheet. Features include a 10-inch 1024x600 capacitive display, 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 2.1+EDR, USB 2.0 and Mini-HDMI ports, audio jacks, support for up to 32GB microSD cards, a 1.3MP front-mounted webcam, and up to eight hours of battery life. The device measures 10.7 x 6.7 x 0.58 inches and weighs just shy of two pounds.
At least two configurations will be offered at launch in the US this month: one with Windows 7 Home Premium and a 16GB SSD for $599 and another with Windows 7 Professional and a 32GB SSD for $699. According to Hexus, general availability in Europe will take a few weeks longer and there will also be two models: a Wi-Fi-only unit for approximately £539.99 and a 3G-equipped version for £599.99 (no word on storage differences).
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