Dell Hopes To 'Streak' Past Apple iPad With Android Tablet


Dell wants in on some of Apple's touch-screen tablet action.

Dell Tuesday unveiled grand plans to go head-to-head with the Apple iPad with the Dell Streak, a 5-inch touch-screen tablet Dell will unleash upon the U.K. next month.

The Google Android-based Streak will be available on the O2 network in the U.K., and pricing and data plans will be revealed soon. The Streak will hustle its way to the U.S. shortly after, Dell said, without offering up a specific domestic launch date.

The Streak is Dell's attempt to get into the now-explosive compact touch-screen tablet market, currently dominated by the million-plus-selling Apple iPad. Dell is one of many manufacturers looking to capture the touch-screen tablet hype. Microsoft, Google and others are also looking to pluck the fruit from the tablet tree with gear expected later in the year. Last month, leaked specs of the HP Slate, HP's iPad answer, hit the Web, further stoking the flames of competition.

While Dell has yet to prove itself as a true competitor to Apple -- its two iPhone rivals, the Dell Thunder and Dell Lightning smartphones have yet to hit the market -- the Streak's allegiance with Android could be the differentiator Dell needs to rival the iPad. Dell said the Streak will support over-the-air updates and, unlike the Apple iPad, support Adobe Flash 10.1 on Google Android 2.2 soon.

According to Dell, the 5-inch Streak will have access to Android Market widgets, games and apps. The mobile Web device will pack in Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and optional 3G connectivity. The media-centric device, Dell said, is ideal for downloading and listening to music, social networking, e-mail, text, IM and voice calling. Video chat capabilities are also on the horizon, Dell said.

The Streak also ties in Qualcomm's Snapdragon with a 1GHz processor to offer laptop speeds in a compact frame.

"The Dell Streak hits the sweet spot between traditional smartphones and larger-screen tablets," said Ron Garriques, president of Dell Communication Solutions Group, in a statement. "Its unique size provides people new ways to enjoy, connect and navigate their lives."

Additional features include Google Maps integration with turn-by-turn navigation and street and satellite views; a 5-megapixel camera; and 2 GB of internal storage and microSD support of up to 32 GB.