updated 11:00 am EDT, Tue September 13, 2011
Samsung Windows 8 tablet for Build spoiled early
Samsung's Windows 8 reference tablet for the Build conference this afternoon was downplayed after Chinese visitor Michelle Hu posted a premature unboxing on Weibo. The design is a special edition of the Slate PC Series 7 that ships with the Developer Preview version of Windows 8 on top. An Intel sticker confirms that it's still using the Intel Core i5 processor and not ARM.
Expectations had been set early on that the tablet might not be special. The last-minute discovery before the Build keynote confirms that neither Microsoft nor Samsung is willing to give an early look at tablets designed for Windows 8 or adapt it to ARM processors at this early stage. Many have been checking for a possible early clue as to whether Windows 8 tablets can match the thinness, light weight, and long battery lives of the iPad and some Android tablets or else if it will have the bulk and poor performance of current Windows 7 slates.
Most expect the first real Windows 8-native tablet demos at CES in January. The OS itself isn't presumed to be reaching a public beta stage until then and may not be completed until April with an in-store date closer to mid-2012. [via MobileTechWorld]