Things are rather quiet right now in the ebook reader market as consumers are seemingly waiting for the next wave of digital readers to hit the market. There are a few less expensive ebook readers due out any time now and I know that many are anticipating the release of the Asus ereaders. Since things are a bit slow, I thought I'd write a few lines about this inexpensive tablet that has caught my eye.
If you like a tablet format and want a device with built-in WiFi and a 7-inch touchscreen that browses the internet and that can serve as a reader as well, the inexpensive Mini Hal may be a good travel companion for you.
With a 600Hz processor running on Ocean Android, the iLet Mini Hal offers you web browsing on the 800x480 resolution screen. The claimed 16 hour battery life is pretty impressive. If you wish to load Hal with Windows CE, you can do so for an additional $25. There is a provided SD card slot and you can even add a 3G dongle to the USB port if you wish.
The iLet Mini Hal sells for $199 and orders made now on the Haleron website will ship out on the 19th of March. The Mini Hal supports MP3/Audio format, AVI, Motion JPEG/Video, word docs, excel, powerpoint, youtube, games, ePub and html ebook formats. The Mini Hal is available in both white and black (case cover).
The price of the Haleron iLet Mini Hal should turn more than a few heads due to the tablet format and the low cost. It seems likely that the release date was carefully planned so that it precedes the iPad by Apple. Of course, it goes without saying that Apple is well, Apple, and known the world over for its outstanding innovations and cutting edge technologies. This small tablet is certainly not going to hurt Apple in any way, shape or form, but it may make some undecided iPad consumers decide to go with a cheaper device.
I would guess that Hal (seems a bit odd and kind of funny to call a device Hal) may cause Sony, HP, Dell and Samsung to sit up and take notice. I can see this device being purchased by average people who want a tablet PC but are not all that concerned with specs and ratings. Of course, we have to see how the iLet Mini Hal performs and what consumers have to say about it once it has been out for a while.
The company that offers the Hal is Haleron Technologies which is not exactly a household word. Haleron has recently introduced some impressive netbooks. The Haleron Swordfish Mini is a 7 inch 'smartbook computer' that sells for just $149.
So, what do you think? Do you think the Mini Hal will do well? It is certainly interesting, looks good and sounds capable enough considering the rather low price tag. Stay tuned as we follow the developments.