The year of the tablet phone continues with the 7-inch Asus Fonepad & new HD Padfone hybrid

Following the official announcement of Samsung’s 8-inch Galaxy Note smartphone and tablet hybrid, Asus today made things official for its own 7-inch tablet with built-in 3G calling capabilities. We’re not exactly sure if consumers are asking for a 7-inch or larger device for making calls, but the addition of an HSPA+ radio is on top of otherwise decent specs compared to its competitors. Dubbed the FonePad, Asus said the device includes a 1.2GHz Intel Atom Z2420 processor, 1GB of RAM, a 1,280-by-800 HD display, and a PowerVR SGX540 GPU. The Fonepad also packs a 4,270mAh battery that Asus said should bring around 9 hours of battery life.

As for availability, Asus said the Fonepad would arrive to customers in the U.K. sometime in late Q2 of this year with prices starting at £179 (inc VAT) for the 16GB variant.

The company also announced another phone/tablet hybrid today, the next-generation PadFone. Asus has released previous generations of the device including a smartphone and tablet dock that allows users to quickly switch from the tablet form factor to a smartphone. It announced it is upgrading the smartphone portion to a 5-inch, 1080p display, while the 10.1-inch tablet gets a new 1,920-by-1,200 display and upgraded internals (via Engadget):

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Samsung prepping 10.1-inch 2560-by-1600 pixel resolution display for tablets


Image via PCWorld.com

(Cross-posted on 9to5Mac.com)

Samsung will next week demo a new LCD display technology that will put future tablets in the Retina Display realm. Developed by Samsung’s subsidiary Nouvoyance, the new WQXGA 10.1-inch display stuns with a whopping 2560-by-1600 pixel resolution. Take a deep breath – that’s more pixels than on your 27-inch iMac and double the pixel count on full HD displays.

It uses PenTile RGBW technology that consumes 40 percent less power, a statement claims. Samsung will show off this tech at the SID Display Week 2011 International Symposium next week. The company expects to have commercial availability of this technology for tablet applications later this year.

At screen size and resolution this large the display features a pixel density of 300 pixels per inch – enough to file as a Retina Display. Apple says that 300 pixels-per-inch is the limit of the human retina where the eye is unable to distinguish between the individual pixels, meaning curves appear smooth and continuous rather than jagged and pixelated. It’s widely accepted that the next iPad will sport Retina Display technology which was first inaugurated ten months ago on iPhone 4.

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