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Motorola testing seven-inch, Android 2.3-based rugged tablet

updated 03:40 pm EDT, Wed April 13, 2011

Motorola preps rugged 7-inch Android 2.3 tablet

One of Motorola's first tablets after the Xoom broke cover on Wednesday in a leak of plans for a pro device. The unnamed tablet would shrink to seven inches and focus on rugged use, with MIL-810G weather sealing and IP54 waterproofing hardening it up for the field. An overview obtained by Engadget would unusually show it going to Android 2.3 rather than using Android 3.0, however.

Some of the reasoning might come from software plans. The new device would have custom apps to login and meet security requirements. An expansion module slot would also give it room for USB peripherals, like an imager. A stylus would let it work for taking signatures.

Its design would be relatively frugal but would be fast with a dual-core, 1GHz Ti OMAP4 processor undeneath. An eight-megapixel rear camera and a 1.3-megapixel front camera would handle duties like barcode scanning and videoconferencing. Just 8GB of storage would be onboard.

The tablet is near beta testing but is already being touted as the "first physical embodiment defining Android for the enterprise."

Motorola has long promised a seven-inch Xoom but has so far touted that and the 10-inch model as designed for the home. The rugged design, even with a non-tablet interface, may be an attempt to corner at least some of the business market before the iPad secures its position. The Droid developer already has experience in touchscreen pro devices through its acquisition of Symbol but has so far been limited to limited uses, like express courier payment systems.

A slew of takeovers in recent months have shown Motorola hoping to bolster corporate security on Android, historically one of Google's weak points.

by MacNN Staff



    Comment buried. Show
  1. iphonerulez

    Joined: Dec 1969


    When Motorola gets ready to fail it likes

    to do it up in style. What a waste of shareholder's money. Hardly anyone was interested in the Xoom, so I can barely imagine what few number of people are going to be interested in this c***. One thing for certain, Motorola's tablets sure better stay the h*** away from competing directly against the iPad 2. Apple will never build a field-hardened tablet, so Motorola is safe in that respect. That damn Motorola is basically pissing away shareholders money. MMI must already be down about 30% since creating the new division a few months ago.

    Comment buried. Show
  1. BigMac2

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Wait, what?!

    What is the point for continuing to announce tablet base on non-tablet OS? They haven't see what happen with the Galaxy Tab?.

    Comment buried. Show
  1. dliup

    Joined: Dec 1969



    They are stuck in the quicksand of the open wasteland!

  1. Arne_Saknussemm

    Joined: Dec 1969


    WOW !

    Are you fan-boys so afraid of a little competition to Mr. Jobs moneymakers you have to put down every other option?

    You know, competition IS good; competition is most likely the main reason the iPad 2 got a camera in the first place. Not to mention the Retina Display, after three releases of the iPhone with sub-par resolution (most devices on the same price range had 480X800 displays - almost 3 times that of the Jesus phone) iPhone's new display became the market leader for quality. Now only a handful competitors have similar or better displays.

    An who knows, maybe Apple will come up with a brightly colored gadget that will look great on the marina or the beach and start yet another revolution. What will you say then right after coming out of the store with one; Environmentally challenged devices are no longer cool?

  1. jreades

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Screams military/security

    Hello! This device practically screams "Designed to military and law enforcement specifications". Who else *normally* cares about weather sealing and waterproofing on their tablet? The form factor is good for something you need to carry all day, and the use of an older OS would suggest something that can be locked down for end users. Yes, there is also a market here for outdoor enthusiasts, but my money would be on something that is ultimately targeted at the security services.

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