HTC put its newest and most talked-about devices of the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona — the two “Facebook phones” ChaCha and Salsa, and their Flyer tablet — under glass so that no one could play around with them. But under the changing colored lights of the HTC stand, I got a demonstration of the Android-based tablet — HTC’s first — by one of HTC’s own approved sales execs.
Some will be most interested in the aluminum casing, or the sleek edges, or the use of HTC Sense (the interface that HTC puts over Android version 2.4) on the seven-inch screened device. All great, but my favorite feature is the stylus: it’s a throwback to the earliest days of touchscreen devices, yet is actually used in an innovative way: it lets you do the expected annotations and writing, but it also links directly to other functions so make sharing selected content very easy.
The HTC Flyer is also a significant product if you think about HTC’s content investments and acquisitions in the past couple of weeks: the video specialist Saffron Digital and a strategic investment in the cloud-based gaming company OnLive — some of the bigger moves in recent times by a smartphone maker to invest in content publishers.
Given that this kind of content is far richer experience over a tablet than a smartphone, expect more devices from HTC to use those assets to their fullest.
Prices and distribution have yet to be announced.