In another ding against Windows 7's ability to play ball in the tablet arena, the ASUS Eee Pad 101TC, an iPad-league device slated to run a scaled down version of Windows called Embedded Compact 7, will now land on the streets with an Android operating system instead.
Not much positive light has been directed on the viability of Windows 7 tablets. The heavy-duty operating system sputtered on the low-power Atom CPU inside the Viliv S10 Blade convertible tablet, and doubts abound on whether Windows 7 could thrive on the small-but-plucky CPUs of full-touch tablets similar in size and functionality to the iPad.
ASUS seconded those worries by announcing it will release the EP101TC with the very slate-friendly Android, an OS that runs serviceably on the 5-inch Dell Streak smart phone we just reviewed as well as other tablets like the Archos 7 Home Tablet and the touchscreen side of the Entourage Edge ereader-cum-tablet.
Will the EP101TC be shipping with Android 2.2 (Froyo) or, better yet, Android 3.0 (Gingerbread)? No details yet on which tasty treat will be served on the ASUS Eee Pad platter, but Netbooknews.com does report the shipping date remains the same: the first quarter of 2011.
When we spent some quality time with the EP101TC back at Computex in May, it was slated to cost under $500. Now that it'll run free Android software, we should see that price point drop down a bit.
Hat Tip: Netbook News.com