PengPod700: dual-booting Android and Linux on a $100 7-inch tablet

November 10, 2012
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pengpod1000

There are plenty of low-budget Android tablets out there, and we’ve showed you a fair share of them over the time. Usually, these dirt cheap Android tablets shine through one aspect only, and that is their price tag. And that’s fine with us – plenty of people don’t afford to spend more on tablets, and even poor technology is better than no technology at all.

Peacock Imports wants to deliver a cheap Android tablet with a twist. The company took to the crowdsourcing site Indiegogo to sell a line of tablets and mini PCs that offer Android and Linux dual-booting capability.

Linux on tablets is gaining traction, with Canonical, the developer of Ubuntu, recently announcing that the Nexus 7 will be a reference device for the newest version of the popular Linux distro. But truth is, if you want to install Linux on your tablet device (ideally in dual-boot mode), you’ll have to jump through many hoops.

The PengPod tablets will offer simple dual-booting, by having one of the two operating systems installed in the device’s internal memory, and the other one on the SD card. Customers will be able to choose which OS comes installed on the device. Peacock Imports made use of the Linaro project to allow Linux to run on the ARM-based Allwinner A10 SoC that powers its tablets. To make Linux touch-friendly, the KDE Plasma Active interface was used. The Android version used is Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich.

Having Linux and the Plasma Active interface means that you’ll be able to easily run a slew of Linux applications, such as LibreOffice, Chromium, or the XBMC media player. Check it out in action:

Peacock Imports offers a 7-inch PengPod700 tablet (that you can get by pledging $99), a PengPod1000 tablet with a 10-inch display ($185 pledge), and the PengStick, a thumb-sized mini PC that will cost you $85. The goal of the Indiegogo campaign is to raise $49,000 by December 2. So far, the campaign garnered just over $2,000, but Peacock Imports pledged to deliver the tablets, even if it fails to reach its campaign goal.

For more details about the PengPods and the PengStick, or to support the campaign, head to the Indiegogo page or to the PengPod website.

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