EDUCATION HARDWARE MAKER Kno has started shipping its single-screen and dual-screen 14.1-inch touchscreen Linux-based tablets.
Unlike other mass market tablets they will mostly be sold as text book e-readers that are targeted at the educational market with web browsing and note taking support.
The basic single-screen version will cost $599 and the dual-screen version will retail for $899. The company claims demand is high so initial orders are limited to an invitation-only system.
Kno also offers a digital bookstore, www.kno.com/store/books, which includes tens of thousands of textbooks from most of the major publishers, with new books being added regularly. Digital textbooks typically cost between 30 and 50 per cent less than physical textbooks. Kno says that its tablets will pay for themselves in a year with the money students should save in textbook costs.
Under the tablets' bonnet is a dual-core Tegra 2 processor from Nvidia. It is capable of HD video playback, multitasking, and works with HTML5 thanks to the full use of a Linux OS rather than something more mobile phone based. The single-screen version weighs 2.6 pounds while the dual-screen model doubles the storage to 32GB and 5.6 pounds of weight.
Shipments to pre-order customers will be staggered over the next month and new customers interested in purchasing a Kno tablet can go to www.kno.com to complete a request for purchase form.
Babur Habib, chief technology officer and co-founder of Kno, said that designing and developing the Kno has been a collaborative 18 month process with students, partners and publishers. µ
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