NEC LaVie Touch hands-on (updated)

Originally scheduled for a September launch under the VersaPro type VT moniker, NEC's LaVie Touch Windows 7 tablet is finally hitting the Japanese market next week. Alas, there are still no plans on an international release for this 10.1-inch Atom Z670-powered device, but at CEATEC we were lucky enough to stumble upon it along with its DVD dock and wireless input peripherals -- all included for ¥99,960 ($1,300), which is a huge drop from the original ¥144,000 ($1,873) customizable bundle.

Despite the slightly more sensible pricing, is the LaVie Touch still worth the money? Probably a stretch given the much cheaper offerings from the likes of Acer and Samsung, but regardless, kudos to NEC for keeping its tablet's weight just under 730g (1.6 pounds) while promising 10.6 hours of battery life. For comparison's sake, the Acer Iconia W500 weighs 970g (2.14 pounds) and only packs up to six hours worth of battery juice. The NEC tablet felt firm in our hands and its IPS LCD didn't disappoint, though Windows 7 on this particular unit was slightly laggy during our hands-on, so be sure to check it out in the stores first before you hand over your hard-earned yen.

Update: We just found out that Yodobashi Camera has just started selling the LaVie Touch, so we went along to Akihabara to check out the final product. Alas, Windows 7 was still sluggish, whereas the AMD C-50-powered Iconia W500 in the next aisle handled pinch-to-zoom rather well, despite the less impressive LCD.