missing its winter launch last year, the Wikipad – the Android tablet with detachable, console-style controls – is back. Rather than launching the $500 10-inch model as originally planned, Wikipad will first release a more affordable 7-inch model. Wikipad president of sales Fraser Townley tells Joystiq there was "an unforeseen flaw" in the original production run of the 10-inch model, which resulted in its delay last year. Townley wouldn't tell us exactly what the setback was, but he says the company took the opportunity to listen to its community and the decision was made to redesign the tablet.
Townley notes "the overwhelming opinion that, although $500 was justifiable for what we were delivering, it was a tough one for a lot of the gamers," and so the 10-inch model was put on hold in favor of a smaller, cheaper device.
The new 7-inch tablet will feature the same specs as the original Wikipad, including the quad-core Tegra 3 processor, 16GB of storage, micro SD for up to 32GB of additional storage, HDMI out and a "true widescreen HD display." And, of course, it still features the detachable controls, which are the same size as before, despite the tablet's smaller form factor. The new model no longer features a rear camera, though a front-facing camera is still available for things like video chat.
The new Wikipad will launch this spring for $249, half the price of its big brother. Townley tells Joystiq that a 10-inch tablet is still in the works, and he hopes it will launch this year. Whenever it does, Wikipad promises it will have "the latest and greatest specs."