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Posts Tagged ‘Microsoft Courier Tablet’

The Microsoft Courier  is the most exciting, innovative product that has yet to be released. I’d begun to worry about whether or not it was vaporware. Thankfully, Engadget  has just received word that the digital journal will be hitting stores in the second half of 2010.

Courier will function as a “digital journal,” and it’s designed to be seriously portable: it’s under an inch thick, weighs a little over a pound. When closed, it won’t be much larger than a 5X7 photo. That’s a lot smaller than we expected — this new picture really puts it into perspective — and the internals apparently reflect that emphasis on mobility.  The Courier appears to use the Tegra 2 chip and runs the same OS as the Zune HD/Pink, which likely means Windows CE 6.

Having dual screens actually changes this Microsoft Tablet into a Booklet, even more fun for the masses. Based on its looks and videos, it is multi-touch and is supposed to be used with a stylus for writing and drawing.

As we’ve heard, the interface appears to be pen-based and centered around drawing and writing, with built-in handwriting recognition and a corresponding web site that allows access to everything entered into the device in a blog-like format complete with comments. We’re also hearing that there will be a built-in camera, and there’s a headphone jack for media playback. Most interestingly, it looks like the Courier will also serve as Microsoft’s e-book device, with a dedicated ecosystem centered around reading.

An amazing addition that gives a little extra fun is the camera on the back cover, creating a practical tablet that gives a little more.

It has been rumored that it is in final actual design stages and getting really close to “late prototype”. Sounds exciting!

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So many have been waiting, hoping and wishing that Apple will show and bring out some form of an Apple Tablet, but I guess Microsoft has beat them to the punch with the new and good looking Microsoft Courier Tablet, which immediately takes our breathe away with dual 7″ screens.

Today, the saga of the Courier gets a little bit deeper. Our friends at Gizmodo, who seem to have a source from inside Microsoft feeding them goodies, have produced scans of a document that explains in detail how the Courier works. Needless to say, this is going to be one incredibly hot gadget.

  • One finger tap will hold and clip onto content, one flick vertically will scroll and horizontally will advance pages. One swipe up will open an app, and one swipe offscreen kills it. You’ll flick across the page with two fingers to slide across the page or pinch to zoom.
  • There will be a ‘Smart Agenda’ that should act as the homescreen for your Infinite Journal. It’ll summarize your journal info, emails, calendar data, and more.
  • You will be able to customize the cover of your journal.
  • Search via handwriting recognition is expected to be included.
  • Your Infinite Journal won’t be limited to your Courier. You’ll be able to access, view, and edit it from any browser. Friends and collaborators will be able to comment on public sections of your journal, and you’ll be informed of such comments in the Smart Agenda.
  • Once again, it’s been confirmed that you’ll be able to ‘tuck’ images and the like in the spine of your Courier in order to move it from place to place.

  • The Courier pen will have a ‘twisting mechanism’ to switch modes and a top-mounted undo button that acts as an eraser.
  • Sketch mode will give you a huge color palette, and the ability to switch between modes by pressing a quick-select button.
  • The camera will have a viewfinder to let you crop and set up your photos before you take them.


Every piece of new info we get about the Courier makes it sound even more exciting. This is the first, and so far only truly unique idea for a tablet PC I’ve yet seen. Rather than being a giant MID or laptop without a physical keyboard, the Courier seems to be a distinctly seperate sort of gadget. I can imagine all manner of uses for it.

Artists, writers, grad students doing research…the possibilities go on and on. No information has been released about the price or anticipated release date, but if you ask me it can’t possibly come soon enough.

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