LindowsOS has announced it is currently working on a tablet computer running its GNU/Linux-based operating system and expects it to be ready early next year. According to the article, Lindows does not plan to use handwriting recognition as Microsoft’s TabletPCs support.
Lindows Readies Own (Cheap) TabletPC for Next Year
Submitted by Christian Viente 2002-11-13 Linspire 43 Comments
From what I gather from the article, they simply try to make very minimal changes to Lindows included in that TabletPC and not even offer handwriting recognition. WindowsXP Tablet Edition has already quite some additions in the OS and APIs, new or updated tablet-aware applications and full integration with other Microsoft applications. I don’t believe that Lindows will achieve this kind of integration, simply because Lindows don’t make that kind of software (e.g. KDE’s KMail) and so far Lindows hasn’t shown that they are making substantial changes/additions to any OSS apps. They just use them for their OS, pretty much, as is.
elections, I mean whoever can get their name out there the most is bound to get more votes (sell more product). That’s just an analogy, but sometimes it does work in elections, and I think that Lindows is basically pulling strings to get as much publicity as possible.
They have an announcement every other week it seems, I think they are just trying to keep their name fresh.
About the tablet pc’s, unless they start working underneath the hood of Linux and X, they’ll never get the same integration that microsoft has in their tablet pc’s.
> About the tablet pc’s, unless they start working underneath the hood of Linux and X, they’ll never get the same integration that microsoft has in their tablet pc’s.
Exactly. Plus they need to patch and add functionality specific to tabletPC’s special environment to a number of much-used apps, like KMail or Mozilla… That is a lot of work and Lindows exists only for a few months now (MS works on TabletPC project for many years and they only launched last week). Good luck to them though.
The Tablet PC market is practically untaken yet and no consumer will buy a product of 2000 – 3000 € just to see if it works. Boldly going there with a 500 € price tag is a nice opportunistic move. Who cares if there are less features? How many consumers do actually know what the Tablet PC features are?
If they call it a Tablet PC and the price is affordable, why not give it a try?
Be could have done the same in year 2000, but they didn’t. They had BeOS (not just BeIA) running on a WebPad (same thing as a TabletPC, touchscreen, wireless and stuff), with no extra tabletpc-specific software, just like Lindows *seems* to be releasing next year. But they never released anything like that to the public. They found that probably there is no such market, or that is not interesting enough, or that it is not exactly usable without a very specific interface (like BeIA’s or other IA OS).
So, I find hard to believe that if you take as desktop OS *as is* and you install it on a TabletPC hardware will work as well as an OS that is modified and has apps to work specifically for this type of hardware and interface, like Microsoft’s is. This is why I say that even if people buy LindowsOS on a tabletPC, they will either not be happy with it, or in the best situation, they won’t find it as cool or useful.
The fact that it is going to be cheap, in this specific situation, it only shows what it offers to the user and what it is: cheap and not specific/integrated enough.
There is code for most of what Lindows needs for this, and Lindows is pulling from the pool. Hope they put together a good product and not a second-rate tablet PC.
They don’t give much in the way of details – will it have a touch screen or is that stylus just for effect?
I think they’ll sell a lot of them – almost all of which will end up with Windows installed on them ( I assume there are drivers available for touchscreens under XP? )
They found that probably there is no such market, or that is not interesting enough
I would consider Be to have been a very good judge of the market…
If they get a PC with a touchscreen and the OS/apps run smoothly on it, I’d probably be interested.
I would like something that’s somewhere between a PDA and a laptop.
However, I don’t think Lindows will be the ones to do it.
Now this is exactly what I want.
I want a thin tablet pc that I can have next to my bed to surf before I go to sleep and when I wake up.
I don’t want, or need, a $2,000 semi laptop with hand writing recognition. Am I the only person in this
world that writes faster with the keyboard and get wrist aches after some (read a lot) hand writing?
I was actually planning on buying Microsoft’s solution, but now I’ll definately wait for Lindows’ one.
Hey, I’ve always wanted a cheap webpad (tablet pc, or whatever) to have on the coffee table for a quick check of the mail without sitting down in front of the computer. This thing with a wireless network and keyboard could be it. I’m not a big fan of Lindows but I would’nt see why anybody would install Windows on it (as ~CdBee~ suggested). A Gentoo or Debian installation, a webbrowser and maybe a mail client and I would be pretty happy.
For me another thing would be critical, beside low price and touchscreen and that is short boot time or some suspend mode. Not many would use it if you’d have to wait ages for it to start up.
get a life
How are they going to get it real cheap to the public. What will it be a k6-2 tablet pc.
I thought LCD cost a lot, I’d rather by a laptop yet the companies that produce these are so greedy that they just won’t lower their prices so everyone can afford them.
The way I see it, pretty much everyone who has ever owned a laptop (how many years have these things been around) is an early adopter.
I live in Australia and nothing is cheap down here, so don’t reply and say “this laptop is cheap” because I don’t have US income.
I don’t have US income.
It’s not so much the income that the problem (per se)
Australian incomes in general are (IMO) “close enough” to US incomes.
It’s the damn Tax.
If I wasn’t paying ~50% tax on my bonus each year, I’d be able to afford a nice new laptop each time.
get a life
um.. I don’t see why checking the news/reading an article before you turn the lights off
should fit into the no-life-category any more than watching TV , reading a book or playing some Playstation.
I agree. I would like one of these too.
A tablet PC sounds cool but much to expensive. If I can get one for $500 it would be much better. Handwriting recognition is exactly the feature they can leave out IMO.
But the article is not clear on which features the lindows tablet *will* have. So lets wait until they really have something on the market and then we’ll see.
You see, if we as a community really wanted to further Linux, we’d all buy this.
Lindows, Inc. is doing what most Linux companies can’t or haven’t – putting together a dead simple package, which is quite attractive, I’d add, and marketing it!
LindowsOS may not be the straw that starts the MS monopoly downfall, but it could certainly help LEAD to OS equality.
I think an inexpensive Lindows tablet is a great idea, but I believe it needs handwriting recognition. When I’m revising documents I make a lot of margin comments and temporary changes, flipping back and forth between pages to see how it’s holding together. I know you can do the same thing in MS Word, but it still feels more natural to me when I’m using paper and pencil, and I’m nowhere near 40 years old. A tablet would give me the best of both worlds.
I think it’s cool too….
this, to me, is a tablet PC. the windows one is a laptop with a fully hinged display….
it looks the right size, certainly the right price (around $500), just too bad it’s lindows…hehe..
Linux enabled tablet PC’s aren’t new. And i’m going to guess that it will have a touch screen, how else could you use it? If you go to the manufacturers website you’ll see that they sell WinXP tablet PC’s as well. However, they start at $1,000! I can’t wait for the LindowsTabletPC. That’s going to be my internet & email PC…
My simple requirements for a $500 consumer tablet is to address mostly basic communications, entertainment/education needs. Putting too many requirements on the Tablet essentially turns it into a laptop, a heavy device which I not what I want to drag all day long with me.
Tech requirements -> Life needs
– 802.11 access -> Internet access
– Bluetooth support -> sync with PC, PDA, Keyboard
– OpenOffice.org -> read/edit MS Office docs
– eBooks apps -> read books/mags on the bus
– MP3/Ogg, Realplayer -> audio / visual entertainment
– Evolution -> read/write emails
– PalmOS -> maintain calender/address/tel
– Sturdy/lightweight -> lasts 3 years, easy to carry around
– Low power consumption -> min. 12 hours operating without charge
Looking over these requirements, the tablet looks heck of lot like a Supersized PDA!!
One of the resons why this baby won’t have handwriting
recognition is that there doesn’t exist a good piece
of software doing this on Linux right now and the
Lindows people don’t have the manpower to get this
done with an early release, if at all.
But if enough people buy it and really miss
handwriting recognition, there’ll be some
Open Source projects who could manage to
add this missing functionality.
Personally I think the non-handwriting portions
of the WinXP tablet PCs would be more worthwile.
Selecting text, moving it around and all that stuff.
A keyboard will always be faster than handwriting.
And considering the handwriting of most geeks, even
a on-screen keyboard will be better.
Okay, apart from those of the distaff side, who
somehow manage to get something readable done
with their pens…
…if it’s 500 bucks. And assuming it actually makes it into the market, it will of course put pressure on other companies to lower their own tablet PC’s. The tabs are pretty slick devices–I was goofing around on one yesterday at work–and it was pretty handy, actually. But I wouldn’t buy one at their current cost; they’re not *that* handy!
But at 500 bucks, the product is much more attractive. I wouldn’t count out this joker who runs Lindows (Robertson)too quickly. The Lindows OS started out as a joke by most accounts, but 2.0 is reportedly pretty good from a consumer perspective. (Can’t claim to know…I’m running RedHat 8.0 which was–pardon the brief digression–brain dead easy to install; I was expecting trouble and got none).
> According to the article, Lindows does not plan to use handwriting recognition as
> Microsoft’s TabletPCs support.
So it’s a not-a-tablet Tablet PC? Or maybe it is modeling a read-only tablet?
One more thing to add: A Samba/NFS client, to use a Mozilla profile off of my home file server, or to save files while I am browsing.
Why would anyone want a tablet-style computer if all you have is an on-screen keyboard? At that point, why not just use a laptop? I suppose if the majority of what the majority of target users are doing on one of these tablets is just surfing the web and doing almost no typing. So, never mind my complaint.
But to me, it’s still a big deal. I expect to be able to do the majority of my computing on any computer I’m at, which is why I use Dynapad and Squeak, OS X and the Newton OS. I do not see being limited as part of my future in computing. As such, I expect to have a mostly efficient means of input on any generalized computer. With the Newton OS 2.1’s handwriting recognition system (Rosetta, Inkwell is based on it), I easily get 40-50 WPM writing English sentances. Using the onscreen keyboard, more like 15, Graffiti (yes, Palm had it on the Newton first!)
Number 3 in this “Michael’s Minutes” page about Lindows for Tablets states that Handwriting recognition won’t work reliably enough to be practical. Fortunately for users of Newtons, Apple’s Inkwell, Microsoft’s Transcriber and ParaGraph’s CalliGrapher, marketroids like Michael usually think that Graffiti is handwriting recognition. Which it’s not- Graffiti is character (or more accurately, stroke) recognition. True HWR has been reliable and viable as a means of ASCII/Unicode input for a number of years. And yes Michael, it works great with both cursive and printing.
He goes on to say: 4) Even if we could perfect handwriting recognition, people wouldn’t use it…. Just because a particular technology becomes possible doesn’t mean people will flock to use it.
And just because you release a $700 tablet computer doesn’t mean anyone will want it. Through the market, users have shown again and again that they’re not interested in an expensive paperweight that only does some of what they want to do.
Why pay $500+ for a computer that just surfs the web? What about you want to write a memo without getting up, going into the office, waiting for that slow WalMart PC to boot up into Lindows just so you can work on that memo when you could do it on your tablet if companies like Lindows tried just a little bit harder to keep their heads out of their know it all asses?
Linux, in many ways, represents the essence of the philosophy “The more choice, the better.” Seems rather silly to take that philosophy and turn it right back around into “Don’t worry, as a simple user, you don’t know what you want, what you need, what you already know works well for you. We will be making the decisions from now, and we have determined that handwriting recognition isn’t worth providing. Why? Because Linux doesn’t have it already and we don’t have the technical ability to implement it, actually making our product worth using, rather than just another cheesed over Linux distro. Er, um, I mean, HWR doesn’t work, just look at how slow it is to write emails on a Palm III!”
In more interesting news, it looks like the OQO won’t be released until April of 2003, and shipping above the original estimated price of $1000. It looks like $1600 for a 800 MHz/256 MB RAM/10 GB drive and $1800 for the 1 GHz/256 MB/20 GB drive version. They’re taking pre-orders now, and I’m incredibly tempted to make the plunge- it’d be the perfect platform for my PDA environment based on Squeak, [url=http://dynapad.swiki.net]Dynapad[/url].
It would be cool if they had a small slide-out keyboard like the Zaurus.
Oh, it won’t be like the Microsoft Tablet PC! Oh, it won’t be a “real” tablet PC! Lindows won’t be the ones to do it!
The Microsoft tablet is way overpriced in a very soft economy. A $500 price point tablet PC makes ‘way better sense
The Microsoft handwriting recognition software is nothing of the sort! Bill Gates stated more than once that the software saves our scribblings as-is, without any interpretation/translation of any kind. So why burden the OS with useless apps? Does anyone REALLY think that users will buy any tablet because of handwriting recognition???
As far as I can tell, the Lindows tablet WILL have a touch screen.
Dissenters may speak now…
Lindows/Robertson continue to amaze me. First, they made
themselves look like a joke because of the MS program
compatibility fiasco. Since then, however, they have not
dropped the ball and have followed through on things. They got the Wal*Mart deal, then 2.0 came out and was surprisingly good and now this. Still, I think Robertson makes a mistake by almost attacking handwriting recognition. Instead, he should just say it’s not part of this package, is not meant to part of it. I can’t wait to see this thing 😉
I’ll but three if they come out like this. Intel did research in the past that clearly stated that webpads would not be viable until they reached a price point of $400 or less.
These overwrought XP pads are way the wrong direction and reflects Microsoft’s attempt to drive everyone to high-priced software (and the consequent need for high-priced HW).
I want a web pad for info searches in the kitchen, in front of the TV, as a portal for shopping, etc. I have a server and three desktop systems as well as a laptop for serious work.
The perfect usage model is looking up a recipe for dinner @ Epicurious or Cook’s Illustrated and then adhering the pad to the kitchen cabinet @ eye level so I can cook.
I agree with the other posters on the subject of HWR. I think at least giving the user the option is important here. And with PDA’s already in the market with handwriting or character recognition, how can Robertson say that people won’t use it, or that it’s unreliable? Please. Don’t spread HWR FUD.
One thing I was wondering about tablets in general: does anybody know if they’ll use pressure-sensitive styli?
>>> even if people buy LindowsOS on a tabletPC, they will either not be happy with it, or in the best situation, they won’t find it as cool or useful.
How would you know ??? LindowsOS TabletPC is not even here yet!!
it only shows what it offers to the user and what it is: cheap and not specific/integrated enough.
Again, how do you know that it will be cheap and not specific/integrated enough? None of us have seen the product, and no one knows what improvements they will make over time.
All these sentiments are just speculations from
armchair critics who really are not in any position to know what Lindows is doing or Planning. Some people specialise in discovering all the reasons why an idea or project will fail. Others just go ahead and try things anyway.
Personally, I am glad that Lindows is expanding into other things as well. I mean, these guys have been here for just a short while, and even then, they have done better than most of us expected. I wish them luck.
Hey I’m all about chearing on the underdogs here, but I don’t think I could chear for a company called Lindows, that’s main marketing strategy is to clone Microsoft’s marketing strategy in order to cut into some dough. I mean yes it has worked in the past, everybody steals everybody’s ideas from Xerox to Microsoft now we have Windows, but I mean sometimes you just wish that somebody would have some success with their own friggin idea and dream, instead of some copycats taking it and turning it into their own dream.
These TabletPC’s are neat, but why is it that after Microsoft announces a huge TabletPC launch that we have all the other small players stating their plans when they don’t even have products in the market place?
Not that I have that kind of money right now, but I’m guessing that by the time it sales I might do. I was playing the other day with an Acer Tablet PC demo at my school and to be honest, didn’t enjoy it much. It couldn’t recognize most of my handwriting (heck, sometimes I can’t) and having two separate pieces wasn’t that great. Is nice to be able to move it around but I prefer just one single pad. Besides, paying $2100 academic is kind of a misnomer. I don’t mind the recognition, I can live with dabbling graphical notes to documents and may be a wireless keyboard if necessary. I know my wife would love to have a comfortable computer on bed while I use the main computer in the living room. And again, $500 doesn’t look that bad.
While Monday morning quarterbacking is a national sport I hasten to point out to the naysayers that Sunday night hasn’t arrived yet!
I think that distros like Lindows 2.0, Libranet 2.7, Xandros, etc. will do more to bring Linux to desktops than Red Hat or Mandrake.
They’re designed from the ground, er, kernel, up to be completely accessible for new users yet tweakable and powerful for ubergeeks. Don’t like Lindows for yourself? Fine. But to champion distros that are geek-friendly is a disservice to the many who seek choice but to whom choice is either expensive, buggy, unstable Windows or cheap, stable, too-technical-for-the-layman Linux.
Penguins (not command lines) to the people!
Seems like $500 is going to be more like $800
It appears that this is the company that makes it.
ARGH… I was hoping it was going to feature a pressure sensitive pen like the real TabletPC’s will.
Hmmm… would it be possible to have a wireless stylus with a pressure sensitive tip? The touch sensitive screen would give X and Y coordinates, and then maybe the pen could be a bluetooth device that records the pressure? Eh, just pulling weird ideas out of my head I guess…
If this runs l=Lindows, then why couldn’t Redhat release some stuff to have it run on there too. Mandrake and Suse could all try and win over some of the Tablet market while it is young… It just takes one, then projects start adding a lil code here or there to support handwriting recognition and pen based input.
From what I’ve read, the handwriting recognition on the XP pads is inferior even to the recognition that Palms have had for sometime…which I consider passable, but not optimal. Is it worth the extra $500 for handwriting recognition that’s inferior to a far cheaper Palm or Visor? No. I will be very interested to see what the reviews hold for this Lindows pad once it comes out. IF it is truly priced at $500 (OR LESS) (my suggestion), it may well be worth the price.
I have a zaurus and the hand writing recognition is awesome. Now I don’t really use it but when I first got it I tried it out for fun.
SO then if the Zaurus can do it so well with Embedix (linux) then I don’t see why another Linux distro could not do it.
The photos are identical except the image of the Lindows desktop is rectangular where as the LCD bezel is trapezoidal because the PC is tilted back a bit.
Is anything else fake about MR or Lindows ?
It may be that the Lindows version of this may be down around the $500 mark. In the announcement from Lindows, they say there will be no handwriting recognition and perhaps other functions too. And, of course, having XP on it would make it cost more anyway.
E500 tablet PC is impossible. Touch screens LCDs would have already taken 80% of that cost.