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Dell Streak: 5-inch tablet to launch with O2 in early June

You may know it as the Dell Mini 5, but forget all that – Dell’s 5-inch Android tablet is here as the Dell Streak. Launching in early June, it’ll initially be available on O2 (big surprise, given Dell’s recent hook-up with Telefonica) instore, on O2.co.uk and from The Carphone Warehouse. Later in June you’ll also be able to get it from Dell.co.uk.

We had a quick hands-on with the Streak; although it was a little unwieldy in our smaller-than-average hands, it was very simple to get to grips with. The screen was nice and sharp – we can imagine it being a great asset for watching films on – and very responsive.

Although Dell’s spokespeople assured us the Streak is not a smartphone, it can make calls (unlike its erstwhile rival, the Apple iPad). Voice calling is just one of the many features they were keen to impress upon us; but if you’re carting a 5-inch slate around which has the ability to make calls, we reckon we’d leave our current handsets at home. But, take it from us, you will feel like quite the doofus with such a huge handset held to your head.

But what of the tablet’s specs? The Dell Streak won’t be marketed as an Android device, but rest-assured that it is. Running Android (1.6 on release) with a Dell skin, it will have access to the Android app Market and all its associated applications. Later this year, Dell promises an upgrade to Android 2.2 (aka Froyo) which will mean Streak owners can enjoy all the benefits of Flash 10.1 – in your face, iPad owners. Connectivity is available in abundance, with Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, 3G and cellular data all options.

Again unlike the iPad, the Streak comes with a 5-megapixel camera as well as a front-facing camera for video calling. The 5-inch capacitive touchscreen is just large enough to show web pages as they would appear onscreen, which makes for a pleasant web browsing experience; while the onboard Qualcomm Snapdragon chipset, including 1GHz processor, means lightning-quick reactions. Memory-wise, you have 16GB built-in to play with, and by investing in a microSD card you can upgrade this to 32GB.

The Dell Streak will be available in black initially (see below), but there are other colour options which we’re likely to see later (much like Dell’s laptop range) – although no timescales available for there, so perhaps best not to hold your breath. No news on pricing at present, but we’ll be hearing more from O2 closer to launch.

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