ASUS Eee Pad EP101TC moving from Windows to Android

ASUS Eee Pad EP101TC

As we reported in May, when ASUS announced their lineup of Eee Pads, they were said to be running Windows Embedded Compact 7. A month later, it seems that ASUS has had a slight change of heart and will be ditching Microsoft's OS in favour of Android. This only goes for the lesser of the announced Eee Pads though, the EP101TC. This shouldn't come as too much of surprise as many manufacturers have been moving away from Windows for their tablet computers in favor of Google's mobile OS.

ASUS has stated that the first real public unveiling of the new tablet computers will come at CES 2011, with telcos getting a sneak peek at the devices sometime in December. With a launch window of Q1 2011, ASUS also has plenty of time to adapt Android for their needs. It would probably be safe to assume that Android will mature quite a bit between now and the release of the Eee Pad, and ASUS is probably hedging a few bets on the maturation of the platform.

With Android expanding from being strictly a handset OS into the tablet space, vendors will likely be looking for ways to differentiate their products. It wouldn't be too surprising to see big vendors such as ASUS go beyond simple hardware differentiation, and dabble in the realm of custom OS UI layers, much as HTC has done with their Sense platform in the phone market. Early mock-ups of the Eee Pads show that ASUS certainly has a vision for their user experience, and an early 2011 release window should give them some time to get Android into shape.

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Since this tablet is due to be shipped in Q1 2011, Windows EC7 probably won't be ready by then. Besides, the way Windows EC7 (3rd parties design most of the the UI) is set up it's a better business solution than Android while the reverse is true for consumers.

No. Why there are so many andriod tablets coming on the way,WCE7 was such a nice os and was much more usable.

Xypro said,
No. Why there are so many andriod tablets coming on the way,WCE7 was such a nice os and was much more usable.

How is it more useable?

Xypro said,
No. Why there are so many andriod tablets coming on the way,WCE7 was such a nice os and was much more usable.

We've barely see anything of WCE7 and what we've seen isn't encouraging.

thealexweb said,

We've barely see anything of WCE7 and what we've seen isn't encouraging.

Because CE7 doesn't look anything special on its own. It needs manufacturer/OEM based skins to make it useful, it's just the framework.

People just don't realize how crippled a non windows pc is until they actually try and use one.

There is a tablet coming out this September that is the real deal, the EXOPC will be an awesome Win7 tablet as it has a newer Atom cpu, 2GB ram, GPS, Broadcom HD chip and it's own touch gui layer and it's own app store.

You get the best of both worlds a real pc with a real OS and a touch based gui and app store.

Being stuck with a mobile OS for serious computer needs is VERY crippling to a device.

There's a difference between Win7 and WinEC7. Tablets fit a very different role to laptops and PCs. So much of what people now do it through a browser and open source office software is fully compatible with Office documents. Android is a fast developing operating system responding to the needs of the mobile market, whereas Microsoft is still playing serious catchup with their mobile offerings.

swanlee said,
People just don't realize how crippled a non windows pc is until they actually try and use one.

There is a tablet coming out this September that is the real deal, the EXOPC will be an awesome Win7 tablet as it has a newer Atom cpu, 2GB ram, GPS, Broadcom HD chip and it's own touch gui layer and it's own app store.

You get the best of both worlds a real pc with a real OS and a touch based gui and app store.

Being stuck with a mobile OS for serious computer needs is VERY crippling to a device.

Your argument falls down because tablets are not generally used for "serious computer needs"

thealexweb said,

Your argument falls down because tablets are not generally used for "serious computer needs"

Exactly, yet we still have a lot of ignorant people around here that are under the impression that tablets (and netbooks for that matter) are somehow supposed to be desktop replacements. They aren't, and no company that I know of has ever marketed them as if they were.

thealexweb said,

Your argument falls down because tablets are not generally used for "serious computer needs"

People said the same thing about netbooks but those didn't start selling well until they came out with windows netbooks.

Hey I don't have to use my win7 PC for SERIOUS computer needs either but is sure is handy when I do and makes it a lot more useful. Win7 runs well enough to be put on these tablets and companies like exopc that are developing there own gui layer and app store make it so the device can be used as a simple touch device but also has the ability to be a real computer if you want.

If I'm going to be spending money on a tablet I'm going to buy something that won't leave me painted in a corner as far as what I can and cannot do.

If I want a quick touch interface and app store it's there, if I want a real pc it's there. Why compromise?

Edited by swanlee, Jul 20 2010, 8:39pm :

roadwarrior said,

Exactly, yet we still have a lot of ignorant people around here that are under the impression that tablets (and netbooks for that matter) are somehow supposed to be desktop replacements. They aren't, and no company that I know of has ever marketed them as if they were.

No we still have a lot of ignorant short sighted and closed minded people thinking that we need a mobile OS on our tablets. If I wanted a mobile OS I'd just use my freaking phone, a portable device with an 8-12 inch screen can do alot more if it has a real OS on it.

swanlee said,

No we still have a lot of ignorant short sighted and closed minded people thinking that we need a mobile OS on our tablets. If I wanted a mobile OS I'd just use my freaking phone, a portable device with an 8-12 inch screen can do alot more if it has a real OS on it.

Whats keeping you from using a tablet or netbook for the things they are designed for and a real pc for what it is designed for? The idea that one device has to do it all is moronic, and leads to half-assed designs that don't do anything well. Jack of all trades, master of none.

roadwarrior said,

Whats keeping you from using a tablet or netbook for the things they are designed for and a real pc for what it is designed for? The idea that one device has to do it all is moronic, and leads to half-assed designs that don't do anything well. Jack of all trades, master of none.

It's simple any tablet I buy I will want to do more than any mobile OS will allow me to do. I want a full OS experience for work and for play in a tablet form factor. A mobile OS means I have to cut out most of the work aspect like RDP'ing into my work pc and correctly control servers without hickups. A tablet with a mobile OS is completely useless to me.

swanlee said,
A mobile OS means I have to cut out most of the work aspect like RDP'ing into my work pc and correctly control servers without hickups.

Come on, I've even done this on my iPhone! You should definitely be able to do that on any tablet with a "Mobile OS". Don't blind yourself to the fact that a "Mobile OS" somehow isn't the same as a "real OS". Windows would be overkill for most of the things that you can use a tablet for.

But I don't want a serious computer device, I want a device to consume media that I can laze around in bed, on the couch etc. If want a serious computing device I'll fire up the desktop.

swanlee said,
People just don't realize how crippled a non windows pc is until they actually try and use one.

There is a tablet coming out this September that is the real deal, the EXOPC will be an awesome Win7 tablet as it has a newer Atom cpu, 2GB ram, GPS, Broadcom HD chip and it's own touch gui layer and it's own app store.

You get the best of both worlds a real pc with a real OS and a touch based gui and app store.

Being stuck with a mobile OS for serious computer needs is VERY crippling to a device.

phototext said,
But I don't want a serious computer device, I want a device to consume media that I can laze around in bed, on the couch etc. If want a serious computing device I'll fire up the desktop.

Well I do want a serious real computing device in a tablet form factor, and in the end I can still use it to lounge around on the couch, surf the web etc.

Why on earth would I spend alot of money on a tablet that limits my options? If I want to work or play a Win7 tablet give me those options, a tablet with a mobile OS limits my options.

alan said,
awsome news!!!

oh yea because we really needed another android tablet? there should be a few dozen of them coming soon and all with more or less the same specs, what's the point

Leonick said,

oh yea because we really needed another android tablet? there should be a few dozen of them coming soon and all with more or less the same specs, what's the point

Rubbish logic. On that logic HP and Dell have released laptops so there's no reason for Acer or Asus or Sony to bother then.

This seems to be competing directly with Chrome OS? I wonder what their plan is in this regard...
On second thought, I guess since these are open platforms, OEMs are free to use what they want and how they want. Pretty healthy progression in my opinion.

Xenosion said,
This seems to be competing directly with Chrome OS? I wonder what their plan is in this regard...
On second thought, I guess since these are open platforms, OEMs are free to use what they want and how they want. Pretty healthy progression in my opinion.

Chrome OS? People are still talking about that?

Does this version of Windows have the same Windows explorer interface that desktop Windows has? If so, then maybe this is a good move. Windows Explorer is NOT an interface suitable for touch.

babyHacker said,
Does this version of Windows have the same Windows explorer interface that desktop Windows has? If so, then maybe this is a good move. Windows Explorer is NOT an interface suitable for touch.

I seem to remember watching/listening/reading something that said that third parties build their own interfaces on top - there's no Windows GUI.

spengbab said,

I seem to remember watching/listening/reading something that said that third parties build their own interfaces on top - there's no Windows GUI.

There is a Windows GUI in Windows CE versions, but it is generally hidden and not used. Many GPS devices use Windows CE with absolutely no indication of any native Windows UI present. They all have a custom UI implemented and you would never guess that Windows CE is underneath. Same with Windows Mobile, and now Windows Phone, they are built on top of CE, but you never ever see the native CE GUI. You only see the WM or WP GUI.

babyHacker said,
Windows Explorer is NOT an interface suitable for touch.
And you have clearly not tried using windows 7 with touch, it works wonderfully

babyHacker said,
Does this version of Windows have the same Windows explorer interface that desktop Windows has? If so, then maybe this is a good move. Windows Explorer is NOT an interface suitable for touch.

A, I don't think you've ever used Windows 7 with touch (I own a tablet) and it works quite well.
B, I don't think you understand what Windows Embedded Compact is.

James Riske said,
This is indeed good news.

Indeed.
Great news for consumer's wallets too, the cost of the Windows 7 license is no more.