CES: Huawei MediaPad gets Ice Cream Sandwich

Not content with capturing the eye with the Ascend P1 S smartphone, Huawei is using CES to talk up its tablet offerings too, enhancing one and adding a new model to the range. Not that there's a lot of difference between the two.

First up, let's deal with the existing model, the MediaPad tablet, which launched in the UK late last year. Android 3.2 (Honeycomb) was the operating system back then, but the company has announced that the MediaPad will become one of first tablets to come preloaded with the new Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich operating system. Good news if you haven't got round to buying one as yet and fancy showing off to your Android-loving buddies. If you have got one, there's an OTA upgrade incoming.

On top of that, there's the new model, going by the name of the MediaPad colour series. To be honest, there isn't a lot 'new' here, except for one obvious thing – those colours. According to Huawei, you can choose from shadow black, classic brown, and passion pink. But frustratingly, what you gain in colour, you lose in OS, as these tablets still run Android 3.2. It's not clear why, as both devices are essentially the same inside. Both tablets come with seven-inch, 1280x800 resolution screens, which offer full 1080p HD video playback, as well as packing a Qualcomm dual-core 1.2GHz processor. Maybe an OS upgrade will follow for the coloured tablets too.

In the meantime, Huawei are talking up those colours: 'In a tablet market defined by staid black and white tablets, the new colourful MediaPad offers a personalised look without the need for an external case,' said Huawei Device chairman Richard Yu. 'With a hardware package that includes a high-quality screen, a powerful dual-core processor, and long battery life, this colourful MediaPad embodies a rare combination of style and performance.'

Huawei’s new MediaPad colour series and the MediaPad with Android 4.0 will be available in 'selected markets' in the first quarter of 2012. Existing MediaPad owners will receive that over-the-air Android 4.0 upgrade by the first quarter of 2012.

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