C’mon now, don’t act all surprised. This one followed the picture perfect path to shipping: announcement, hands-on, a stop by the FCC’s database and now, a formal portal in Creative’s webstore. If the Galaxy Tab, eLocity A7, G Tablet and Advent Vega haven’t exactly tickled your fancy, there’s hardly a chance the 7-inch ZiiO will have what it takes. That said, it’s now up for grabs at $249.99, with that sum getting you 8GB of storage ($20 more doubles it to 16GB), an 800×400 resolution display, Android 2.1, a ZiiLABS ZMS-08 HD processor, 802.11b/g WiFi, Bluetooth 2.1+EDR and a front-facing VGA camera. Unfortunately, this thing has a zero percent chance of revolutionizing your life in the way that the ZiiEagle already has, but perhaps it’ll bring you joy in some smaller, less meaningful way. Trackback: Creative via Engadget

Fortumo, mobile payments provider in Europe, Asia and US has revamped it’s in-app payments library for Android, now supporting offline payments. Unlike all other major in-app payments solutions for Android (as well as Apple’s App Store) that require the user to have an active data connection while making a purchase, Fortumo’s solution can also be used when there is no data access. Fortumo pulls this off by relying on carrier billing and falling back to SMS text messaging when there is no data connection. Application sends a text message to a short code. Payment is verified when the application gets back a confirmation text message. Users initiate a payment with a single click, without leaving the application. Fortumo’s in-app payments is powering Rovio’s Angry Birds “Bad Piggy Bank”, which was announced last week, letting users either remove the ad on the free version of the game or buy the Mighty Eagle update. The same in-app payments library that Angry Birds is using is now available for all Android develpers for free. Developers can download the library and integrate it with their app at http://fortumo.com/in-app-payments . Fortumo has billing coverage in 50 countries and about 200 mobile operators. There are no startup fees, monthly fees or minimum volume commitments, making it suitable for small and large developers alike. Fortumo Ltd, founded in 2007 with offices in Europe (Tartu, Estonia) and US (Sunnyvale, California) has gained over 49 000 registered service providers who have created over 156 000 mobile payments services since 2007.  Fortumo is available at http://fortumo.com

I was browsing Costco for christmas gifts the other day, and I happened upon the Pandigital eReader. Backed by Android, this device sets itself apart from most other tablets by calling itself an eReader, and looking slightly more like a 4:3 screen instead of a 16:9. The screen is responsive, most of the time, but it’s fairly slow to load programs. It comes with the Kobo book store and that in itself worked very well. Reading books on it based on its size and weight would actually probably be quite nice, and of course it has the ability to play music, browse the web, and watch videos too. For the price, I’m sure you’ll be happy with this basic tablet, but keep in mind this is the black color lcd version, not the epaper version, meaning it has 128mb of memory onboard.

Looking for a bargain bin tablet without the bargain bin stigma? We told you around three months ago to look Stream TV’s way, but it seems that the same message could be applied today. For whatever reason, the 7-inch eLocity A7 tablet actually didn’t ship in September, but according to a fresh piece of PR, that’s being remedied today. The A7 — complete with Android 2.2 and NVIDIA’s Tegra 2 silicon — has started shipping today to those who placed a pre-order, and it’s also found a safe and secure spot on Amazon’s website. ‘Course, it’s listed as “out of stock” for the time being, but as soon as the factory lines start cranking at a decent clip, the $399 slate should make an appearance at Walmart, NewEgg, BJs, Tiger Direct and Micro Center (among other places). Emphasis on should. Trackback: Engadget

Turns out Andy Rubin might not be the only fella who’s been showing off the elusive Motorola Android tablet. Earlier this week, some lucky guy from Taiwan claims to have stumbled upon the sameHoneycomb device, and was kind enough to share the above homescreen spy shot as well as some thoughts on his one-hour hands-on. We’re told that there’ll be a 7-inch version as well as a 10-inch version (the latter appears to be what Rubin had), and the one we’re looking at here has a 1280 x 800 display of unknown size, NVIDIA Tegra 2 T20 dual-core chip, gyroscope, a 5 megapixel main camera, and a 2 megapixel front camera. Memory-wise it has a 32GB embedded MMC and a microSD slot. The poster reckons the hardware — which is “pretty light” — is all ready for launch, but Honeycomb still needs some final fine-tuning. Sadly, he hasn’t got a date, but said device will apparently be priced like the current Motorola high-end phones, and will be available in three flavors: UMTS, CDMA, and LTE (which we heard about a little while back). Well, only time will tell whether this guy really does have a good friend at Motorola, or that he’s been talking to some unicorns. Trackback: Engadget

The Archos 101 is the largest, fullest featured of the 5 Android tabletsArchos introduced a few months ago. It’s just starting to ship in some parts of the globe, and the folks at Laptop Magazine have published one of the first detailed reviews I’ve seen. The Archos 101 features a 10.1 inch, 1024 x 600 pixel capacitive touchscreen display, a 1GHz ARM Cortex-A8 CPU with support for HD video playback, and runs Google Android 2.2. Prices are expected to start at $299.99 for a model with 8GB of storage. Laptop Magazine seemed reasonably pleased with the build quality. The tablet measures less than an inch thick and weighs just 1.1 pounds, making it one of the lightest 10 inch tablets in its class. The multitouch display is also reported to be quite responsive for playing games, navigating web pages, and using on-screen gestures such as pinch-to-zoom. On the other hand, the reviewer was less impressed with the reflective display which had poor viewing angles. While the Archos 101 doesn’t come with Google’s Android Market preloaded, the company’s AppsLib store provides about 18,000 apps, including popular apps such as Angry Birds and Slacker. That’s still less than one fifth of the apps you’ll find in the full Android market though. You may want to hack your way to full Market access if you pick up this tablet. One of the strong suits for Archos tablets tends to be multimedia support. Archos includes a custom media player which supports almost any DRM-free audio or video file you can throw at it. Laptop ran some benchmarks which show that the Archos 101 can hold its own against the competition — but it’s certainly not the fastest Android device on the market. The reviewer also reports that the Archos 101 gets excellent battery life, lasting for […]

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