Coming as a bit of a surprise, Creative today announced a pair of slates dubbed the ZiiO Pure Wireless Entertainment Tablets and a handheld media player called the Zen Touch 2 Wireless Entertainment Device. What differentiates these devices from Creative's earlier products is that they all run on the Google Android mobile operating system.
The ZiiO will come in 7- and 10-inch versions with screen resolutions of 800x480 pixels and 1,024x600 pixels, respectively. Both come in 8GB or 16GB capacities, making for a grand total of four variations. The 7-inch ZiiO starts at $278, while the 10-inch version starts at $332.
Based on Android 2.1 (Eclair), the differentiating factor of this tablet appears to be the inclusion of Creative's X-Fi technology. The company claims a superior audio experience and seamless Bluetooth stereo pairing.
Interestingly, the press release states you can download apps to the ZiiO "from the Internet and ZiiStore." No mention was made of access to the Android Market.
The Zen Touch 2 is a portable device that also runs Android 2.1. It comes with a 3.2-inch touch-screen display and also features X-Fi technology. The basic version comes with Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, a 2-megapixel camera, and microSD card slot in 8GB and 16GB capacities at $216 and $248, respectively. An "enhanced" 8GB version with added GPS is also available for $232.
The products will be available from the Creative online store starting at the end of December and at stores in January.
The devices will run on Creative's ZiiLabs ZMS-08 processor. We've previously seen Creative demonstrate Android on its Zii reference device, the Egg, but this was more a showcase of its Zii hardware platform than an actual consumer product.
(Source: Crave Asia)