Nokia tablets get 3G, company says 'software comes first!'

At Open Source in Mobile (OSIM) in Berlin this week, Nokia announced that future iterations of its Internet Tablet OS will support 3G HSPA. Are Nokia tablets becoming better PCs than 'tablet PCs?'

Worldwide mobile device leader Nokia predicted earlier this month that its dominant position in the market would soften as consumer confidence weakens. Meanwhile, the company presses ever harder into the software sector.

This week, the Finnish company upgraded its status in the nonprofit Linux Foundation to "Gold" sponsorship status. Nokia's recent innovations to its Internet Tablet OS, the most recent of which it's calling Maemo 5, represent the first code of its kind to be included in the standards-founding group. Nokia has developed Linux kernel code related to High Speed Packet Access (HSPA) connectivity for Texas Instruments OMAP3 processors.

This crucial development will give future iterations of Nokia's Internet Tablets -- progenies of the N800 -- cellular broadband connectivity. While there is a WiMAX-equipped version of the N810 tablet in Nokia's upcoming release schedule, any future tablets running Maemo 5 will be equipped with OMAP3 chips to facilitate 3G connectivity. These are an upgrade to the current 400 MHz OMAP 2420. TI claims this can improve performance up to three times. Nokia also announced added support for high definition cameras and optics, in keeping with OMAP3's purported strengths.

Nokia reps said that the company does not yet have a successor to the N810 ready for announcement. Since its OS will be open-source, however, "software comes first, and then products based on it may come later."

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