After seeing the Litl Webbook teased along with its not-so-teasing $699 pricetag, there's no way we could let CES slip by without checking out the easel-like device. And that really is the coolest thing about the Webbook: its 12.1-inch screen flips around to take it from regular laptop into a tent-like, digital photo frame of sorts. Jump past the break for our hands-on impressions and some video.
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Litl Webbook hands-on
Litl really shines when you fold the screen over (about 270-degrees) and stand it up like a tent. The user interface automatically adjusts to an alternate card mode that let's you view the widgets at full screen. But because it isn't a touchscreen you can only change the displayed card by turning the wheel that's on the top hinge. The set up is a bit wonky, and though we got the hang of it, we wished we could just reach out and touch the screen (out of habit we actually tried to a few times). So, what's the point of this mode? Basically just to display content, like video or photos, similar to the HP DreamScreen or Chumby-like device.
We get what Litl's trying to do here and they do have a very nicely designed product. But the question is at $699 do you really need something like it when you can snag a netbook that can do lots of the same things at $399 in addition to a digital photo frame for less than $150. We do appreciate that the Webbook's price includes an unconditional two-year warranty -- yes, you can do anything to it and they will replace if for free (Litl trusts you). To sum it all up: cool concept, nice design and software, but with a high price tag.