China based Red Flag Software has showed off a MeeGo-based tablet prototype at a software trade event in Dalian, China. Red Flag Software, an early supporter of the Intel Atom-oriented Moblin mobile Linux operating system that forms the basis of MeeGo, said the NPad tablet will go on sale in the third quarter.
The tablet is equipped with Intel’s new, energy-efficient Atom Z6xx “Moorestown” processor and runs Red Flag’s Midinux 3.0 distribution, which is said to be based on MeeGo. The NPad features a 10.1-inch touchscreen, and offers Wi-Fi and 3G connectivity, says Tech.qq. GPS is also said to be available. Red Flag apparently offered no details on storage options, but told Tech.qq that the battery could support up to eight hours of operation. The NPad comes with some pre-loaded software like QQ chat, office, and educational software. Though there has been no exact word on the price, the tablet expected to be cheaper than Apple’s iPad.
Earlier this month, some MeeGo-based tablets were demonstrated at the Computex show in Taiwan. Prototype tablets based on the Atom Z6xx were shown by Wistron, Compal, Quanta, CZC, and others at the show, and Acer announced it would offer MeeGo on both netbooks and tablets. The NPad did not appear at the show, though Red Flag was among the 27 technology companies that pledged support for MeeGo in April. Like the company’s Moblin-based netbook and MID (Mobile Internet Device) versions of its Midinux 3.0 Linux distribution, the MeeGo version is based on Asianux Linux.
Other vendors that announced support for MeeGo in April included Asianux, DeviceVM, Linpus, Mandriva, Metasys, Miracle, Novell, PixArt, Red Flag, TurboLinux, WTEC, and Xandros. Fedora is also said to be working on MeeGo support. At Computex in early June, Novell and Linpus both announced MeeGo-based netbook distributions. In addition, Movial and Telefonica also announced support for the open source platform. DeviceVM also announced the MeeGo version of its Splashtop, to be unveiled later this year.
MeeGo received more good news recently when Nokia annonced that future versions of its N-series smartphones would all run MeeGo instead of Symbian. Version 1.0 of the open source Linux MeeGo project was released in the late May. MeeGo v1.0 for Netbooks combines the Intel-backed Moblin and Nokia’s Maemo distribution, as well as Nokia’s Qt application framework. Versions for handhelds and tablets running on both Intel Atom and ARM platforms won’t be out until later this year, at which points we can expect the NPad and other prototype MeeGo tablets to start hitting the streets.