AT&T hosted a press event on Monday as part of the company's CES 2012 kickoff, during which company announced the arrival of the Pantech Element, a waterproof tablet.
According to PC Magazine, the tablet, which goes on sale January 22 for $299 dollars with a two-year contract, can be submerged in one meter of water for up to 30 minutes without damage. The tablet isn't for using under water, since the screen becomes inoperable as soon as it's submerged, but it is good for anyone who wants to take their tablet to the beach.
Besides the waterproof element, Pantech's first tablet boasts an 8-inch 1,024x768-pixel screen, a 1.5GHz dual-core Snapdragon CPU, microSD memory expansion, HDMI-out and LTE connectivity, which according to Gizmodo means 100Mbps download speeds "if you're inside a tower." The Element also has two webcams (one, a rear-facing 5-megapixel; the other, a front-facing 2-megapixel) and boasts a 12-hour battery life.
While the tablet currently runs on Android 3.2 (Honeycomb), PC Magazine reports that Pantech has promised an upgrade to Ice Cream Sandwich, though the company has not said when the upgrade will happen.
PC World calls the 16.5-ounce Element "small enough to comfortably hold in one hand" and notes that the "display is large enough for gaming, video watching and Web browsing."
The Element is one of several waterproof gadgets at this year's CES. Toshiba, among other companies, unveiled its own waterproof tablet concept that can actually charge underwater via magnetic signals from a transceiver, reports The Seattle Times.
HANDS-ON WITH TOSHIBA'S UNDERWATER TABET:
According to MobileBurn, Fujitsu also announced the ARROWS ES IS12F, which in addition to being waterproof, is the world's thinnest smartphone, so Fujitsu claims. However, on Monday, Chinese manufacturing giant Huawei announced the Ascend P1S, which has also been touted as the thinnest smartphone in the known universe.
HANDS-ON WITH THE FUJITSU ARROWS ES IS12F: