In a meeting room blocks away from the rest of PAX, we were shown the Wikipad and it left us really impressed. You might have heard of the Wikipad and its ambitiousness. After all, it is a fusion of great tablet and gaming controller. That might sound like an awesome dream but what we saw proved that they know what they are doing.
Firstly, the Xbox 360 style controller is removable and designed to be stored until you want to use it to game. And you will want to game on this tablet. It has the PlayStation Mobile gaming certification and will therefore be getting Gaikai’s game streaming library. Try to understand exactly what I just said. Gaikai will let you stream pc games to the Wikipad and through a cable you could be playing those games on a TV. Thus, with its controller, the Wikipad is a portable console and a tablet all in one. Maybe that sentence doesn’t do it justice but I’m very excited at the idea of this.
There will be games made specifically for use with the Wikipad and existing ones adapted to use it as well. These games will be made even better because of the controller and also because of the specs of the device.
This tablet is no slouch. It will ship preloaded with Android 4.1, aka Jelly Bean, and take advantage of Nvidia’s Tegra 3 processer. It features a 10.1 inch screen running in 1280 x 800 which is pretty good but I must note that the newest iPad is running at almost twice that resolution. That might be the only knock against the Wikipad I can think of right now though.
There is also this interesting ridge on the back of the device that serves as a handy way to hold the tablet, as well as a way to keep it elevated on flat surfaces to avoid spill damage and create acoustics that rival standalone speakers.
I almost forgot to mention that the Wikipad, with and without the controller, is super light. It might just be the lightest, thinnest tablet on the market but don’t quote me on that. Oh, and it’s covered with gorilla glass. Is there anything they didn’t think of?
The Wikipad also has a micro SD slot for expanded memory and a 3G version coming later after launch. The presale and price announcement of the Wikipad is set to be within the next month or so and it will launch before the holiday this year.
So get ready because the future of tablets looks awesome.
UPDATE: Gamestop will begin carrying the Wikipad at retail on October 31st for $499. Preorders start September 7th.