iPad Alternatives: MSI Wind Pad Tablet PC

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Could this be an iPad Hackintosh? The MSI Wind notebooks are a favorite of hackers looking to install Mac OS X on an inexpensive device, and the MSI Wind Pad 100 does share some of the same specs as the netbooks in the Wind product line.

MSI Wind Pad Tablet PC

However, the Wind Pad 100 won’t be a slouch in the OS department. This is not an Android device or a keyboard-less netbook running a watered-down version of Windows. In fact, MSI claims the Wind Pad 100 tablet PC will sport a full-version of Windows 7 Premium, complete with a thin custom UI for touch friendliness.

MSI also unveiled the Wind Pad 110 at Computex, which will sport an ARM processor and Google’s Android OS. Other details on that machine were scarce.

Here’s how it compares to the iPad on the spec sheet:

Apple iPad MSI Wind Pad 100
Display Size 9.7 inches 10.1 inches
Pixels 1,024 x 768 1,024 x 600
OS iPhone OS (iOS 4 coming in the Fall) Windows 7 Premium (with MSI custom UI)
Processor 1GHz Apple A4 1.66GHz Intel Atom
Capacity 16GB/32GB/64GB 32GB
RAM 256MB (unconfirmed) 2GB
Battery Life approx 10 hours approx 8 hours
HDMI No Yes
USB No USB 2.0 x2
Webcam No Yes
Connectivity WiFi/3G WiFi/3G
Weight 1.6 lbs 1.8 lbs

Based on specs alone, the MSI Wind Pad is clearly the more impressive of the two tablets. Still, don’t expect the MSI Wind Pad to mount a serious challenge to Apple’s current dominance in the touch space. The success of the Apple iPad shows that consumers value user experience over computing power.

As it stands, MSI doesn’t have the App Store and hoards of developers working on new and innovative applications; and while Windows 7 does support touch, it isn’t necessarily touch-friendly, which is perhaps why MSI developed a custom UI skin.

However, the MSI Wind Pad could still find a piece of the market, particularly among Windows fans looking for a touch-powered netbook.

The MSI Wind Pad tablet PC should be available in the coming months, and MSI has not announced a price yet. Unconfirmed reports suggest a $500 MSRP.



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