Thursday, December 23, 2010

ADAM the indian challenger of i-pad is sold out

While the iPad still sits atop the tablet throne, there are many pretenders to the throne, trying hard to dethrone Cupertino s wonder tablet. So far, it has been a hard luck for each and every one of those pretenders, but that may soon change as a challenger is set to be unleashed at CES (Consumer Electronics Show) 2011 in Las Vegas, USA, barely a couple of weeks from now. To make things even more interesting,the challenger is from India and its website states that it is sold out on pre-orders according to a report.

The Adam tablet PC has been in the news since a year now and has been an object of much speculation, and less substance. The Adam tablet PC is an Android-based tablet from Notion Ink based in Bangalore and originally from Hyderabad. Headed by Rohan Shravan, this company was founded by six young IITians and an MBA graduate.

What makes the Adam tablet so special is that it is the first tablet or rather the first device in the world, which uses two new promising cutting-edge technologies NVIDIA' s Tegra 2 chip and a Pixel Qi screen, both helping it achieve twice the battery life as well as twice the performance as offered by the Apple iPad. The NVIDIA Dual Core Tegra 250 processor is an SoC with good number crunching ability can run multiple applications smoothly, thanks to the 8 independent processors along with the two Cortex A9 cores, the processors to accelerate audio and video and a GeForce GPU, which means you are in for a good 3D gaming tablet with 3-axis accelerometer support.
The 10.1-inch multi-touch Pixel Qi screen with a resolution of 1024x600 is also something that people are very much interested in, because it allows you to read in bright sunlight like an e-reader but in color. You can switch off the backlight and get up to five times more battery life. It features a 3.2 MP camera that can swivel 185 degrees to shoot at different angles, which is something unheard of in tablets or even mobile phones. With 1080p HD video output through HDMI, you can hook it up to your HDTV and get the picture on the big screen. Internet connectivity is made possible either through Wi-Fi 802.11n or through 3G, if you put in a mobile SIM card. Data sharing can be easily done using BlueTooth, USB and mini USB ports, and a microSD memory card slot, while there is 8 GB Flash memory built-in. It comes with hardware accelerated Adobe Flash, so it will support AIR when it launches. These are reasons enough for the Adam to get sold out on pre-orders according to the Notion Ink website.

That was the good news, and now for the bad news. Firstly, barring the early prototype showed at CES 2010 earlier this year, the Adam has never been demoed to public or experts, so these figures have never been verified independently. The final product has never been seen by anyone outside the company. Notion Ink has kept the Adam under wraps for long, and while Apple also does the same, the latter is a large established company, while Notion Ink is a startup with the Adam being its first product, hence adopting the same strategy of secrecy may actually be counter-productive.

Then there is the problem with the pre-order system not being up to the mark with the server crashing several times. Buyers are therefore not confident to trust their credit card numbers to such a crash-prone transaction system. 

Responding to the criticism, Shravan explained and apologized in his blog: "CES (in Las Vegas next month) is where we intended to demo, show everything and allow for review, else there is no point for a good CES event. Pre-order was essentially for those who wanted to pre-book before Adam goes out of stock...But now reading your comments it feels extremely unfair on our part in not releasing videos, run through and other important things you need to know." As promised on his blog on December 19, a few videos have been made available on websites such as Android Police and Shravan has answered several questions from readers as well.