The First Windows 7 Tablet Computer Goes On Sale

2gopcb The CTL 2goPad SL10 is the first Windows 7 based tablet device to now be available for purchase.

It has some very different features and capabilities compared to an iPad, and shows a very different approach to the design and capabilities of a tablet type computer.

The iPad is a very closed system, both literally and figuratively.  You can only load software onto it from Apple's iTunes store, and you can only connect an extremely limited number of hardware accessories and addons.  Some people have complained, for example, that there is no way to get regular wired ethernet type internet access for an iPad.

The 2goPad has a completely different design philosophy.  Being based on Windows 7, any Windows software can run on it.  And it has a wonderful collection of ports to allow for hardware add-ons.  It has two USB ports which opens up a huge universe of accessories and add-ons, a LAN port, a multi-format card reader, a mini-VGA port, audio in and out and of course a recharging port too.  It also has a built in webcam.

It shows another interesting divergence in design philosophy by having a built in 250GB hard drive rather than using solid state memory.  This certainly gives it an enormous boost in online storage capacity and massively increases its value as, eg, a portable store of and player of movies when you're traveling.

So what is not to like?  It has a 10.1" widescreen type display – good – but with only a moderate 1024×600 resolution, and its battery life is about 5 hours, and it can't recharge from a USB adapter.  It is also much heavier than an iPad – 2.6 lbs instead of 1.5 lbs.

The unit has an introductory price of $499 – the same as the basic model iPad.  More details here.

Which would be the better choice for you?  Perhaps you should read through our complete Buyer's Guide to Choosing an iPad/Tablet Computer, and, as always, due to the rapidly evolving nature of the tablet marketplace, the longer you can delay buying a unit, the better will be the unit you finally receive.

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