In a move away from the Android juggernaut, computer giant Dell has announced its new 10-inch business tablet, due in Australia later this year, will run the Windows 7 operating system.
At a media event in Sydney, Dell said it plans on introducing a 10.1-inch tablet to the market as part of its largest ever business computing portfolio update.
Mobility solutions manager, Michael Townsend, said while the company’s 5-inch Streak tablet runs an Android operating system, the new latitude range will ship with Windows 7.
“There are a lot of tablets out on the market,” Townsend said. “We’ve launched the Streak 5-inch, but when I talk to customers, they see these tablets and want to use them in their environment, but they’re not sure how.”
Townsend said the decision to use Windows 7 was made with the needs of IT managers in mind.
“It will be running Windows 7, and that’s important because when you think about how you integrate it into your existing fleet, how do you run that?,” he said.
“IDC says that by this time next year, IT departments will have to manage 66 per cent more systems than they do today.”
Townsend said while he couldn’t reveal the exact date when the 10.1-inch tablet will be launched, he did say that the device will come without a keyboard because it is a slate device. It will be available sometime in 2011.
Despite research firm Canalys last week claiming that Android is now the world’s number one operating system, Dell’s director for product line management across Asia Pacific and Japan, Jeff Morris, said the option of Windows 7 was aimed at making the consumerisation of IT easier to deal with.
“People today are bringing in smartphones and tablets and they have different types of operating systems which are being refreshed quite rapidly, and the platform itself has been refreshed quite rapidly because of consumerisation,” Morris said.
“To have a device that’s powered by Windows makes it a lot easier to manage because they already have the tools and ecosystems in place to integrate that into an environment versus other platforms where you have to bring in whole other ecosystems to be able to manage these.”
The announcement of the tablet device is part of Dell’s new solutions for the evolving workforce program, and is part of the company’s launch of 24 new business computing solutions across the Latitude notebook, Optiplex desktop and Precision workstation product lines.
The Dell Latitude E-family pricing starts at $1555, the OptiPlex desktops start at $1299 and the starting price for the Precision T1600 workstation is $1899.
-- with Rodney Gedda
Follow Lisa Banks on Twitter: @CapricaStar
Follow Computerworld Australia on Twitter: @ComputerworldAU
Join the CIO Australia group on LinkedIn. The group is open to CIOs, IT Directors, COOs, CTOs and senior IT managers.