12/05/2011 11:46 am ET

Dell Streak 7 Discontinued? iPad Competitor Ends Online Sales

Just ask Joe Dimaggio: All streaks have to come to an end. And now it appears that Dell's Streak -- specifically, it's Streak 7 tablet -- is nearing its own conclusion.

The Dell Streak 7, a seven-inch Android tablet, the companion to the discontinued Streak 5, is no longer available online, as pointed out by Streak Smart. Dell's Streak 7 was announced in January 2011 at CES as the world's first 4G tablet, though that distinction does not seem to have saved it from the axe.

While it has not officially ended the life of the Streak 7, Dell did provide this ominous statement to our sister site Engadget:

Dell remains committed to the mobility market and continues to sell products here and in other parts of the world. Streak 7 delivered a unique experience for customers who wanted a larger screen-size yet the freedom of staying connected to their personal and professional content while on the-go. It continues to be available in many markets through retail, distributors and carrier partners such as Optus in Australia. A 10-inch version of the tablet, Streak 10 Pro, is currently offered in China, offering the ultimate digital divide between work and life. The Venue and Venue Pro devices, as well, continue to earn accolades for performance, design and functionality around the world. We also recently launched the Latitude ST, a 10-inch Windows 7-based touch-screen tablet designed for vertical markets such as education, finance and healthcare in November of this year. We remain committed to expanding our reach beyond PCs with a targeted set of open, standards-based mobility solutions and services designed for commercial and mobile professional customers.

Cutting through the corporate spin: It seems that Dell is going to let retailers sell the remainder of the Dell Streak 7's that have already been produced, but that the company will no longer be making new ones (similar to the endgame for the HP Touchpad). Instead, it is shifting its focus to Windows tablets and Windows phones; when Windows 8 is released next year, it is expected to be more touch-friendly and ready-made for tablets. Analysts expect a new boom in the tablet market when these Windows 8 tablets arrive, and Dell appears to be abandoning Android for the more enterprise-friendly Windows OS.

The Dell Streak 7 joins the HP TouchPad (and, perhaps soon, the BlackBerry PlayBook) as victims of the dominance of the iPad and, more recently, the Kindle Fire and Nook Tablet. Though the Dell Streak 7 sold for just $200, it never caught on with consumers; limited advertising, poor initial reviews and availability on nothing but T-Mobile were probably factors.

Speaking of T-Mobile: The Dell Streak 7's product page still listed on the T-Mo website for as low as $99.99, though the tablet is now listed as "Out of Stock."