In what we pray is not another view into vaporware hardware, rumors are abounding this morning that the much anticipated Crunchpad will be available by the end of 2009. This is definitely a hope and pray issue as we have seen this rumor before in July, August, September and now October. The only sure guarantee of anything cool approaching the Crunchpad actually hitting the street is the Archos 9 on the 22end of October.
Popular Mechanics (of all sources to break news) handed out the 10 most brilliant products of 2009, with the Crunchpad winning one of the awards. This implies that the Crunchpad will come out in 2009 and not at some other time in the future if it comes out at all. This is one of those systems that I seriously want to get my hands on, to the point of sending Michael Arrington an e-mail from my work address to ask if I could get demo copies for the school and see how students use the system. I want one that badly, that it was worth reaching out and asking for demo copies for college.
What is interesting from the premarket frenzy that is building around tablet computers right now is that this is not escaping the manufacturers, as rumors of Apple, Dell, Microsoft, and many other technology groups are working hard to get these systems into place. Of course we live in a world of rumor and speculation right now as nothing has hit the market yet, what could be bad for the market would be the utter failure of these systems to show up, or if they do not live up to the hype.
If you read the known specifications of the Crunchpad carefully, then it is worth noting that the system relies on backend data storage in the cloud. The recent Microsoft T-Mobile Sidekick debacle shows that without serious system administration, disaster recovery, and working backups, this could prove to be the downfall of the Crunchpad as well unless Techcrunch builds out a supporting service themselves, and takes care of it carefully to ensure that it is always on, always there, and that people can store their data. As a business move on the part of Techcrunch offering and selling backend support services would be a brilliant move along with supporting services from Google Docs, Zoho or other services that store data in the cloud.
All we need to see on the market is the first real system like the Crunchpad, and the frenzy will grow huge for other manufacturers to get their products to market. People obviously want these systems given the level of discussion around them, why they are not here yet is anyone’s best guess. The Popular Mechanics article though is one of the things that gives us hope, lets cross fingers on this one; will the Crunchpad hit the market in time for the holidays?
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(Cross-posted @ TechWag)