Tag - Fusion Garage
Fusion Garage CEO Chandra Rathakrishnan has reemerged after unusual silence. In an interview with Engadget, the chief of the tablet designer acknowledged that the company had been "uncommunicative" and explained it as the company focusing its efforts on staying solvent. The company needed a new round of funding to "continue surviving," he said, and was talking to a number of possible investors.
More signs that Fusion Garage may be shutting down emerged Sunday. Michael Arrington, founder and former employee of TechCrunch, noted that law firm Quinn Emmanuel had formally requested last week that it withdraw as the defense against AOL's lawsuit for alleged fraud over what ultimately became the JooJoo tablet. Singapore-based Fusion Garage hadn't been paying for services for "several months," according to the request, and there had been a "breakdown in communication" that made any reconciliation difficult.
Fusion Garage may have quietly burned out of existence. Along with letting its FusionGarage.com and TheJooJoo.com web domains expire, users are reporting both in forums and on Facebook that the company has stopped shipping orders and at least sometimes hasn't provided refunds. Its social team stopped using Facebook in October and last posted on Twitter December 9.
Fusion Garage's Grid 4 smartphone has been spotted undergoing testing at the FCC. The $400 contract-free device is expected to launch sometime this fall, and its appearance at the FCC backs this timeline. The handset will run on Fusion's own Android-derived Grid OS and sports a dual-core Qualcomm processor along with 16GB of storage space.
Last month, Fusion Garage outed its Grid 10 tablet. The device was supposed to ship September 15, and carry prices of $499 for a Wi-Fi version and $599 for 3G. The company is now accepting orders for the US for the 10.1-inch tablet, but with an expected October 1 ship date and prices of $299 and $399 respectively.
Fusion Garage as expected confirmed itself as the origins behind TabCo, now known to be a fake promo brand, and unveiled the Grid 10 tablet and the Grid 4 smartphone. The 10-inch Android tablet is completely unlike its struggling ancestor, the JooJoo, and is built around a heavily customized layer known as the Grid OS. It revolves around an infinite space, the Grid Desktop that lets users organize their apps around clusters that can be collapsed and labeled; much of the interface is controlled through gestures.
Mystery 'startup' TabCo in a tweet (since deleted) spoiled its own launch by confirming that its first product is the Grid 10, better known as the JooJoo 2. The 10-inch, likely Android-based tablet is due to officially be announced at noon. Most details still aren't known, although the team will likely customize the interface.
Corroborating earlier reports, Fusion Garage appears to be moving ahead with the successor to the JooJoo tablet. The company has pushed a new device through the FCC using the model name Grid10. The label schematics suggest the device is built with a tablet-size form factor, however the documents do not provide further details surrounding the design.
Tablets are on a fast growth track that could delay many PC sales and is comparable more to TVs and other major electronics, UBS analyst Maynard Um said in a detailed study. The iPad, Galaxy Tab and other tablets wouldn't directly steal share from notebooks but, by late 2011, could persuade many users to stall computer upgrades if a tablet costs the same. Users will still need computers for writing, and iPad users are still tied to a computer to sync and get updates.
Fusion Garage chief Chandrashekar Rathakrishnan said on Thursday that the existing JooJoo tablet was being phased out. The one-time iPad rival was marked as "end of life" and would mark an end to the original platform, the CEO told e27. The switch to Android was going to lead to a "completely different" set of hardware.