ViewSonic ViewPad P100 pictures and hands-on

ViewSonic has certainly been busy on the tablet front at Mobile World Congress 2012 and, while it's all been about Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich, there was a cameo from Windows with the arrival of the ViewSonic ViewPad P100

The P100 sports a Windows 7 OS on a 10-inch IPS 1280 x 800 display panel. Using an Intel N2600 dual-core processor running at 1.6GHz, it should be suitable for Windows 8 when it arrives. The device itself is a bit of a beast, feeling a lot more like a computer with the keyboard hacked off than a tablet in its own right.

The enormous dock connector at the bottom is probably the main culprit here but with every other kind of port and socket under the sun stuck on to the rim somewhere, it was never going to be a lightweight thing of beauty. There are external speakers, a lock button, a flap where you can stick a SIM and SD card, two USB ports, headphones jack, power adapter, volume rocker, home and menu buttons and more. A lot. And that might explain the £520 price tag for the Wi-Fi version with £645 if you want 3G too.

The harder part to understand is why you really want to have Windows 7 on a tablet at all. It's not much fun to use. The screen is okay - not super responsive, just okay - and it's all a bit fiddly trying to translate your finger touch to that of a pin-point cursor.

At the same time, with Windows 8 fast approaching, there seemed to be some suggestion from ViewSonic that, indeed, the P100 might never in fact make it to market at all. Not the biggest shame as far as we're concerned.