I was invited to HTC Flyer Launch event on 26th April 2011. The event was held at The Arts House. As this is the first tablet for HTC, naturally, many people attended.
The stage was built with the screen that looks like the HTC Flyer.
The welcome speech.
Our speaker is Wayne Tang, HTC Product Marketing Manager.
Some specs of HTC Flyer like dual camera, 7-inch screen, 1.5 GHz Processor (note: not dual core), built in 32GB internal memory and etc.
In the presentation, I realized that HTC is going a different direction to differentiate HTC Flyer with other tablets in the market. Instead of making it into a generic tablet, it tries to differentiate itself with some features not found on other tablets.
One of its success in HTC mobile market is the HTC Sense UI. This has also been ported to HTC Flyer. Also, HTC has added some key features on this HTC Flyer, like HTC Scribe Technology (pen input), HTC Notes, HTC Read, HTC Watch.
HTC Notes is my favorite. With HTC Notes, you can type, use the Pen that utilizes Scribe Technology to write naturally, or use the camera to capture an image (Do note that it will not capture video in the notes) and sync with Evernote. It also features Time Mark where you can go back to the date that you capture the note and listen to the content.
According to HTC, the audio recorded will be compressed to save memory space.
I think this video will be able to explain almost all the features of HTC Flyer.
The HTC Flyer will be available from May 2011 at S$1068. Click HERE to read the Press Release.
The presentation was a short one. We were split into two groups for some demo and hands on. Our first stop is an introduction of the Scribe Technology.
Basically, the Scribe Technology is integrated into the HTC Flyer. However, the Pen cannot be used as a stylus for surfing the net or etc. Its key purpose is for writing. And without the pen, you cannot write.
I asked HTC why the pen was not integrated into the unibody since it is an important part of HTC Flyer. The answer is that HTC wanted HTC Flyer to be slim. With the pen (that is thicker than HTC Flyer), it is not a good design option.
However, I certainly hope that HTC can consider a way to secure the pen. There is no way to tie a string to the tablet. According to HTC, Flyer will come with a cover that has a slot for this pen. I have not seen it, so I cannot imagine how it looks like.
The Pen has two buttons. One of them is for erasing purpose and the other is for highlighting purpose.
Here is a shot of the tip of the Pen.
The Pen is powered by a single AAAA battery (yes, you did not see wrongly, 4 As). I have never seen a AAAA battery before. However, HTC assures us that NTUC is selling them.
Based on HTC, the battery can last very long. I guess it depends on the usage.
Our next stop is to see how good the Scribe Technology is. We have a caricature artist to draw with the HTC Flyer. Here is Chester with Kamal.
He took just a few minutes to draw us and print out wirelessly. And we managed to get it sent to our email 🙂 . Here is mine.
Here is shot of the end product on HTC Flyer.
And here is a video of the caricature artist at work.
Our last stop is a demo on HTC Read and HTC Watch. For HTC Read, you can actually buy books from Kobo or read the thousands of free ebooks that is available.
For HTC Watch, it is NOT available in Singapore yet. Right now, you can only watch the Trailer of the movies via streaming. According to HTC, it may be available end of this year in Singapore.
Here are some shots of the HTC Flyer.
As you can see, it has a 5-MegaPixel camera at the rear.
The HTC Flyer is very “clean”. It has only a single MicroUSB port at the bottom, a rocker switch for volume on the side, a power on button and a 3.5mm stereo audio jack.
I did a short video on the hands on.
That is it! I hope that I can get a review unit. I find that it is useful for those who take note in meeting or have some ideas that they need to jot down immediately. I think it is the closer that it can get to Microsoft Courier (that never materialize).
I do hope that HTC can improve on the sensitivity of the pen. Of course, I am not asking to be as good as Wacom but at least I can get a good pressure sensitive input. Currently, it can do that but difficult to control.
Currently, HTC Flyer is on Android Gingerbread (Android 2.3.3) and according to HTC, it can be upgraded to Android Honeycomb (Android 3.0). No timeline yet.