Sharp Announced Galapagos E-Media Tablet and Cloud-Based E-Bookstore

Sharp announced its Galapagos tablet at CES 2011.The company didn’t overtly mention Android, they could have slipped in a gem. They focused mostly on televisions and displays along with 3D, color optimization, and efficiency, but an interesting couple of devices called the Sharp Galapagos Tablet may have a dose of hidden Android.

E-Media Tablet and Cloud-Based E-Bookstore – with screen sizes of 5.5 and 10.8 inches – are currently only available in Japan, but a US model is expected this year. Both versions boasts XMFD technology which adjusts content automatically to fit the screen. All content is stored on micro SD card, so you’ll be able to access it even when there’s no Wi-Fi signal available.

As well as enabling web browsing, the 16:9 touchscreen LCD gadget links up to the the e-bookstore service to offer you access to e-books, movies, games and music as well as newspapers and magazines. What’s more, publishers will be able to send out sneak previews of new content based on your previous choices.

The 5.5-inch model is only slightly bigger that an iPhone and not too dissimilar to the Samsung Galaxy Tab in size. It’s relatively comfortable to hold and easy to use but the touch screen isn’t quite as responsive as that of the iPad. The same is the case for the larger 10.8-inch model, although the unclusion of multi-touch support is a nice feature. However, this is also slightly clunky and there was sometimes a considerable delay between swiping the screen and anything happening.

The UI is intuitive and logical, while the the inclusion of just two buttons on the front of the device (Back and Home), keeps things simple.

No specs for the US model have been confirmed, including the screen size.


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