The most awaited day has finally arrived! It took some time, but now when as we look back, it seems more than worth it. This is a rather detailed post and I will try to answer most of your questions. And there is a LOT to share. Let’s look at somethings we will talk about now:
- We promised that we will lower the price of the basic versions. Well, we have done that!
- We also shared that 6th of December would be a wonderful day for Android, and it was for more than one reason (2.3 and 3.0). We will look at why the Adam can’t be considered to be running just Android 2.2 anymore. (What relates more to Eden – Gingerbread or Honeycomb?)
- More details about the launch, global pricing policy, colors and shipping
- More on the User Interface and Applications
- Official comments on NFC, Digitizer and Mystery Feature.
- And finally what Adam means for all of us!
It’s great day, possibly deserving an entry into the history books about how we all came together and started a revolution. Adam, as we love to call it, is not a tablet, it’s a dream come true for many of us. We have pushed the limits of current technology and raised the expectations from other devices as well, especially the fact that it’s not just hardware or software, but it’s both. Android on Adam is no longer a phone OS; it’s Eden, a new play ground for big touch screen devices.
The next little break-through must happen in the prices.
If you remember I explained that it’s possible that we would be able to cut the price of one of the variants further. So here is the confirmation! You know we have 6 variants : LCD (wi-fi only), LCD + 3G -900 series, LCD + 3G -850 series, Transflective (Wi-Fi only), Transflective + 3G -900 series, Transflective + 3G -850 series.
Earlier we told you that the first version will start at $399. But now the LCD Wi-Fi version will start at $375.33 and 3G version at $425.33 (for limited period?). Transflective version (Pixel Qi) will start at $499.45 for Wi-Fi only and 3G variants at $549.99 (2 variants in 3G, 900 series and 850 series which takes the variant numbers to 6!). (For specifications please see our website).
Let’s look at what Android 2.3 and 3.0 (Honeycomb) would be bringing to the table:
- Better OpenGL ES, OpenSL ES support.
- Multi-touch Keyboard
- Better Copy, paste features
- Kernel Upgraded to 2.6.35
- Better View Support (Honeycomb) and Clean User Interface; Better Memory Management.
Now let’s see what Adam comes with:
- OpenGL works better on NVidia’s Tegra than on anything else in this space – because of their expertise on graphics, their implementation on the built-in GPU of the Tegra 250 SoC is exhaustive and highly accelerated. OpenSL support is something which will come as an update soon (we love Open SL because we love graphical visualizations for audio, which need really fast Fast Fourier Transforms)
- SIP/VOIP. Implementations of SIP and VOIP already exist. With the newly announced official support, programmers can port much more confidently to the Adam.
- Multi-touch keyboard. When we were working on Office Application, we realised how important “Ctrl+z” was, and then decided to design a multi-touch keyboard. Well it seems it is also coming on Android 2.3 and 3.0. Adam comes 2 special keyboard designs, both of which are multi-touch enabled. In our usability studies it was clear that touch keyboard will have annoyingly high error rates. One of the observations made during those tests was, that if you get rid of the lines or space which exist between the keys, users become much more focused on their typing, experienced users had far better word counts and error rates reduced drastically. The other version is a split keyboard which you can use when you are holding your device with both your hands. We have added quick access keys and all your keys can have 2 functions (hence the multi-touch requirement – take a look at the keyboard in the end)
- Better Copy, cut and paste. Now, this already existed since long in the Office environment, and the native implementation is also there.
- Android 2.3 comes with Kernel version 2.6.35. The latest which NVidia Tegra works with is 2.6.36! ;) http://android.git.kernel.org/?p=kernel/tegra.git;a=summary (Please see the details on this new kernel online, and you’d know the reason behind that smiley)
- Honeycomb: In layman’s term “Support of Views within views”. That’s what we have done in the Eden. The Panel system allows for 100s of panel instances, which are views within views (in further simpler words independent windows on-screen). When you’ll install any native application, you will get the feel and UI of the new Android (we are extremely happy that there is far less gloss and web 2.0 designs now). Memory management is something we have spoken about earlier, and was expected in 3.0 as well.
The way we look at Eden, its closer to the Honeycomb than to the Gingerbread (it was intention as well and we did everything in our capacity to know more about Honeycomb, so when it’s launched there should be no surprises. In fact you might remember one of our post from China where I hinted the same! :) ), and we were really happy to do those changes for you in time. So when you look at Adam in your hands you will not feel under-powered by a Mobile OS.
As promised, the first access would be given to those who had commented in this blog “before the last post”. To carry out this, all selected will be sent a confirmation email and pre-order link which will remain active for 6 hours from the receipt of that email (keep a tight view on your mail box including your spam filter!) Pre-booking for them will start at 10 December 00:00 AM IST. After 6 hours, it will be open to everyone (which would be 06:00 AM IST)! Let’s take a look at the image on the left.
This is certainly a big number (and we are 4 hours from EOD). These are unique visitors and we rank number 2 in the top blogs on WordPress.
First is Oprah Winfrey! Take a look:
Adam is launching with the same price in all the countries, so if you are in a stronger currency country (hello Europe!) you’d be more happy. Notion Ink will always follow One Price Policy for every country as we believe in Globalization and World being our market, not countries.
We have 6 variants. If we add 2 colors, we will have 12 variants, and so on. Managing these many variants is definitely not a good suggestion. But the color fight existed long before we posted that Poll, and we’d one more surprise for you! Default Adam comes in Matte Black Color with white strip, but this strip is replaceable. Starting Mid-Jan our partners will start shipping different colored strips and you can customize according to your own preference!
Our shipping partner is DHL, well known, respected and quick services. They add a lot of reliability in the whole logistics management for Notion Ink and should add a lot of confidence to the new members of the Adam community.You will be able to use their tracking system without error for tracking your shipments!
Images speaks far more than I can write, so Drool On!
NFC, Digitizer and Mystery Feature
NFC: Well, Adam doesn’t come with NFC sensor. It is little hard as of now to define the use cases for a 10 inch screen device in current implementations. But that doesnt mean we are not working on it! Eve will have NFC and will use it for more than we know its used for!
Digitizer: I couldn’t resist commenting back with a simple smiley when someone asked this questions in the comments. I was waiting for this day! Adam comes with an Open Source implementation which converts it into a digitizer. You don’t even need wires. You can use your Adam as a BIG touch screen for all your PCs, so you can draw, paint, sketch, click, select and do all you want! (Did I tell you since it has a screen as well, you can use it as your keyboard also). (Please note, technically Adam’s way of using the screen as touch input for your computers does not make it fall into traditional digitizer domain, but it’s rather an intelligent implementation and hack in to the system)
The Mystery Feature. It will still be a mystery! :) One of my wish was to design a product where every fortnight you can receive a new update which isn’t just a security bug fix, but a discovery of something which already existed, sort of un-locking a part. This is my first attempt on the same lines!
What Adam means for all of us?
Adam is certainly the beginning. Fortunately, the excitement of what future might hold has made us rather more focused, because we need to lay the grounds for what is yet to come. The test for Adam is harder than we think. It’s the survival of the fittest out there. We have designed it to be the latest in technology for next 12 months but the competition might catch us even faster. Adam has to succeed as a product, as a vision and as a consumer device.
He is going to be a companion for students, an access to the world of featured emails for businessmen, platform for experimentation for scientists, and the true internet device which defines half of our time today! As someone commented, it is an Inception, and its going to make us look at it in awe!
The Adam has arrived!
With Warm Regards
(And finally the Engadget Post: http://www.engadget.com/2010/12/09/notion-ink-adam-gets-caught-photoshopping-its-bezel-away/ Well we have 3 things here. One image with the older Adam 3D render, second where it was fixed and re-posted and third, an economical way to get more publicity. Can you notice along with the bezel, the location of the icons also changed, both are different silk screens. Little unprofessional journalism)