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CrunchPad Being Re-branded As JooJoo 277

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the long-way-from-$200 dept.
adeelarshad82 writes to tell us that Fusion Garage seems to be ignoring the drama surrounding the "CrunchPad" and is planning to launch their "JooJoo" tablet this Friday at midnight. Unfortunately, the device will be a long way from the imagined $200 price point, weighing in at a hefty $499. "The JooJoo comes in black and has a capacitive touch screen, enough graphic power to deliver full high-definition video, offline capabilities, and a 4GB solid-state drive, though 'most of the storage is done in the cloud,' Rathakrishnan said. He promised 5 hours of battery life. In a demo during the webcast, the device powered on in about 10 seconds, and showed icons for web-based services like Twitter, Hulu, CNN, and Gmail, though the JooJoo will not come pre-loaded with any apps, Rathakrishnan said. Scroll through them with your finger as you would on the iPhone. In terms of the ownership drama, Rathakrishnan said that TechCrunch editor Arrington has created an 'incomplete and distorted story.'"
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CrunchPad Being Re-branded As JooJoo

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 07, 2009 @04:31PM (#30357998)
    The HitlerHitler
  • by Frosty Piss (770223) on Monday December 07, 2009 @04:33PM (#30358018)

    ...though 'most of the storage is done in the cloud...

    • by dreamer.redeemer (1600257) on Monday December 07, 2009 @04:55PM (#30358238) Homepage
      Exactly what I thought... 'sure, they'll steal a whole product without a moment's hesitation, but I'm sure my data will be perfectly private and safe with them."
      • by Anonymous Coward on Monday December 07, 2009 @05:39PM (#30358742)

        Wait a minute. I'm a manager, and I've been reading a lot of case studies and watching a lot of webcasts about The Cloud. Based on all of this glorious marketing literature, I, as a manager, have absolutely no reason to doubt the safety of any data put in The Cloud.

        The case studies all use words like "secure", "MD5", "RSS feeds" and "encryption" to describe the security of The Cloud. I don't know about you, but that sounds damn secure to me! Some Clouds even use SSL and HTTP. That's rock solid in my book.

        And don't forget that you have to use Web Services to access The Cloud. Nothing is more secure than SOA and Web Services, with the exception of perhaps SaaS. But I think that Cloud Services 2.0 will combine the tiers into an MVC-compliant stack that uses SaaS to increase the security and partitioning of the data.

        My main concern isn't with the security of The Cloud, but rather with getting my Indian team to learn all about it so we can deploy some first-generation The Cloud applications and Web Services to provide the ultimate platform upon which we can layer our business intelligence and reporting, because there are still a few verticals that we need to leverage before we can move to The Cloud 2.0.

    • by Trepidity (597) <delirium-slashdotNO@SPAMhackish.org> on Monday December 07, 2009 @05:01PM (#30358344)

      No doubt so the Elders of Zion (who live in the clouds) can read your data. ;-)

    • by natehoy (1608657)

      As long as "the cloud" can mean a server I control, that's fine.

      Of course, for $500, I could get a pretty kick-ass laptop, or a matching pair of netbooks, or a Kindle/Nook and a netbook.

      Still, it's probably a nifty neato early adopters toy.

    • After Apple abandoned me and tens of thousands of other Apple ][ and ][+ owners almost thirty years ago, I have no love for those crooks. But I could get an Ipod Touch with twice as much memory at half the price and several times the battery life. At the $250 price level, the larger screen would have been worth it; at $500, no way.
  • Retarded Name (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Sponge Bath (413667) on Monday December 07, 2009 @04:34PM (#30358024)
    The technology would have to be extra special to make up for the price point and name. JooJoo? What were they thinking?
  • Price (Score:5, Interesting)

    by teslafreak (684543) <teslafreak@hotmail.com> on Monday December 07, 2009 @04:37PM (#30358050) Homepage Journal
    At $200 I would be all over this (even though it sounds like it was bred from a bit of dirty business dealing). For $499, I would rather buy a laptop and have the keyboard.
    • Re: (Score:2, Flamebait)

      by MightyMartian (840721)

      No shit. At $500, where exactly is the incentive? It's like electric cars. For a heap load of money, get a car with a quarter the performance and range of a car that costs half the price!!!

      • The incentive is it's be a nice toy to have. And $500 bucks for some people isn't exactly breaking the bank.
        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by MightyMartian (840721)

          There may be a few fools who are easily parted from their money, but I predict this product is a flop. The trend is towards smaller and *smarter* devices, not towards further dumbing-down. The name "joo-joo" seems quite applicable, because monosyllabic nonsense names describe this product to a tee.

    • Re:Price (Score:5, Insightful)

      by rho (6063) on Monday December 07, 2009 @05:07PM (#30358402) Homepage Journal
      Unless Apple makes one, then a lot of folks will think $500 is just right.
      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by Duradin (1261418)

        I doubt Apple would release something with a measly 4GB storage (the smallest "current" touch is 8GB at $199) and a pitiful 5 hour battery life for a device of that size.

        A 64GB touch is $399. Having one scaled up to that size with some beefed up specs would make $500 a reasonable price point.

      • If Apple makes one it'll do more than web browsing. It'll do at least as much as the iPod Touch. Amongst other things that means innumerable applications a couple of clicks away in an app store.

        • "Amongst other things that means innumerable applications a couple of clicks away in an app store."

          My PC came with the crapware already loaded!

    • by rickb928 (945187)

      I snagged a Lenovo X41T a while ago for $120. Had to buy a replacement pen for $45 and got a dock for $23. And I sprung for restore discs that cost me $56, so I'm into it for about $250 all said and done. Meh.

      It does need a pen. It is otherwise terrific until the HD breaks, and then I probably will get a CF replacement instead of paying for the special sideways drive...

      Just beware, the drives are terribly expensive. Otherwise, these notebooks are pretty tough, and adequate unless you need HD video, whi

  • I glanced at the article but didn't spot it. 2? 3? 4? Also is there really any benefit to having more than 2 cores inside a machine?

    • It's an Atom, so it's probably a single core. The dual-core Atoms look to be targetted at desktops.

    • by omnichad (1198475)

      Yes, there's a benefit to more than 2 cores. Why would you suggest there's not? I ran a video encode yesterday that happily used 100% of all four cores, and encoded at faster-than-realtime. It would have taken twice as long with only two cores. It would have taken half as long with 8, assuming it can take advantage of that many. If not, then I could have used the computer with no performance hit while it was going. Still a win.

      • I ran a video encode yesterday that happily used 100% of all four cores

        Video encoding is embarrassingly parallel: each run of frames between keyframes can be given to a separate core. But a lot of workloads, like the pagination that happens whenever the user views a web page, aren't necessarily so parallel unless the user is tab-browsing.

        • by omnichad (1198475)

          Well...if flash would kindly use its own thread... The Linux version of flash is painfully slow. A separate core for rendering video is almost a necessity - but Adobe hasn't made that possible yet.

        • Well I'm not going to be doing any video encoding. I suppose having a "spare" core is handy but otherwise 3 or more is not needed for the average web surfer.

  • by SuperKendall (25149) on Monday December 07, 2009 @04:39PM (#30358070)

    I don't see the pure tablet play working, not from JooJoo, not even from apple - it's always going to be a niche, and a small one.

    The one way I can perhaps see it working is if you either build in a collapsible keyboard, or let them work with bluetooth keyboards and have some way to attach it making a kind of temporary laptop. There are just too many uses of a computer where the ability to type for long periods is needed, to get away without a real keyboard in a larger form factor. There are already netbooks with touch screens and that just seems way more practical.

    JooJoo has issues outside the name though, the price point does not seem great for what it does.

    • by jours (663228)

      The one way I can perhaps see it working is if you either build in a collapsible keyboard, or let them work with bluetooth keyboards

      Or perhaps if they have solid working voice recognition, I'm still holding out for the small form factor device that does that properly. Until then iPhones, Blackberries, Palms and such are all second devices to the computer. But if one could dictate e-mails and such into it, then a 12" tablet might start to replace PCs and netbooks...

      • by Abreu (173023)

        A voice-recognition interface is great at the beginning, until it mishears you during a conversation, causing it to DELETE an important FILE

        Apologies to Scott Adams

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by PCM2 (4486)

      Yeah, but e-book readers are apparently the hot item for the Holidays this year. If you can sell a device with a slow-refreshing screen that only does 16 levels of grayscale and supports no applications except a document viewer and (maybe) a stripped-down Web browser for $260, why wouldn't people be willing to buy a more fully-featured device for a similar price? I've been in the market for some kind of tablet as a secondary computing device for a long time, and I'm sure I'm not alone.

      Note I said "similar p

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by Andy Dodd (701)

        "If you can sell a device with a slow-refreshing screen that only does 16 levels of grayscale and supports no applications except a document viewer and (maybe) a stripped-down Web browser for $260"

        You forgot about the fact that the slow-refreshing screen uses basically no static power. The end result is that such devices have INCREDIBLE battery life.

        • by PCM2 (4486) on Monday December 07, 2009 @05:14PM (#30358458) Homepage

          You forgot about the fact that the slow-refreshing screen uses basically no static power. The end result is that such devices have INCREDIBLE battery life.

          Over and over I hear how important this is. Why is it important?

          Just how many two-week-long vacations on desert islands do you take in a year? Otherwise, how hard is it to plug in your e-book reader overnight? Surely a lot of people read books in bed and would have no trouble putting their reader into a cradle before rolling over and going to sleep?

          • by omnichad (1198475) on Monday December 07, 2009 @05:22PM (#30358560) Homepage

            It's not as important as resolution. If you've seen one of these in person, you know that e-ink has print-like density. It's sharp and clear. It's the "no eye fatigue" that makes the screen worth paying for. Low battery usage is just icing.

            • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

              by PCM2 (4486)

              Really? I've never found the screens to be "print-like." The contrast is kinda poor, for starters. And at 167ppi, though grayscale, the resolution doesn't seem to match that of a laser printer, yet alone professional printing presses.

              My Nokia 770, on the other hand -- the predecessor of the aforementioned N810 -- has a backlit, full-color 4.25" screen at a whopping 225ppi. Text on this thing is razor-sharp. The battery life ain't great, but like I said: I don't really see the problem.

            • If you've seen one of these in person, you know that e-ink has print-like density. It's sharp and clear.

              Sounds just like the vague excuses people come up with for vinyl. e-ink is going to lose out to colour display tech which has a decent refresh rate (OLED/LCD) because most people do not value the things you do. Browsing the web in black and white is never going to cut it, no matter how sharp and clear it is. I've seen one in person and they're not very impressive, and nothing like print since the screen is not even white. However I don't hope to persuade you of this... just thought I'd point out that people

              • by omnichad (1198475)

                I'll admit I've seen a couple of LCD's lately that rival it. But they're relatively new. Haven't been to a store in a while.

          • You've never used one so I understand that it's difficult for you to comprehend.

            First off I don't HAVE to remember to charge it. This is a biggie. I may not use my Kindle every day. In fact it may sit for a week, or more, between uses. When I do want to read I don't want to find that it's battery is dead.

            Second, yes you can charge and read at the same time but it is inconvenient to be tethered to the wall with a cord while your reading.

            Third, the incredible battery life virtually assures me that I'll be abl

          • by Mr. DOS (1276020)

            I'm replying on behalf of flight passengers, long-distance car- and bus-riders, cottage vacationers, and campers. In all of these (and more) situations, power may absolutely be available (with the exception of the last one), but it's a blinking inconvenience. It's not until you have an MP3 player that gets 40+ hours of battery life [cowonamerica.com] that you realize just how nice it is to have devices with ludicrously long running times.

            Long battery life: you should try it some time. You know you want to.

          • by argent (18001)

            One of the reasons I switched back to PalmOS from Pocket PC was that my Jornada, even with the fat battery, couldn't go a long weekend of light use, or a weekend being used as a bookreader, without running flat. The iPaq was even worse.

            Surely a lot of people read books in bed and would have no trouble putting their reader into a cradle before rolling over and going to sleep?

            * fall asleep reading.
            * just plain forget.
            * spending the night away from home, forgot the cradle.
            * camping. Yes, somehow it's nicer to

          • You forgot about the fact that the slow-refreshing screen uses basically no static power. The end result is that such devices have INCREDIBLE battery life.

            Over and over I hear how important this is. Why is it important?

            Just how many two-week-long vacations on desert islands do you take in a year?

            As a point of comparison, my phone would probably last 6-8 hours as an ebook reader, with the phone turned off and the screen backlight on. (Under most lighting conditions the backlight would be necessary to be able to read the thing...)

            Now, if I were traveling, I might find myself without access to a power outlet for a substantial period of time. I could go to the airport and wait around hours, while the few outlets in the lounge are taken by people who got there before me... Or I could be on the plane

        • by theJML (911853)

          You also forgot that the slow-refreshing screen is incapable of doing full screen video for any period of time, let alone keep their battery life while doing it.

          A e-book reader is a different thing entirely than a tablet PC.

          But I still think this is a bit too much for what it does. If they could make it the thickness of a iPhone 3G, with full HD resolution, a touch screen interface, and still have 6 hours of battery life (While using those things with WiFi and 3D to boot), then it'll be a contender. Until t

      • by Abcd1234 (188840) on Monday December 07, 2009 @04:57PM (#30358286) Homepage

        Yeah, but e-book readers are apparently the hot item for the Holidays this year. If you can sell a device with a slow-refreshing screen that only does 16 levels of grayscale and supports no applications except a document viewer and (maybe) a stripped-down Web browser for $260, why wouldn't people be willing to buy a more fully-featured device for a similar price?

        Unless said "more fully-featured device" has an eink display, I think the answer to that is obvious.

    • by Julie188 (991243)
      I agree. Hard to see the average person buying a tablet for $500, when you can add a digital pen/tablet input device, like from Wacom, for about $99. I guess there is the lug-it-around factor ... if you need to do a lot of drawing out in the field. But that's a niche. I'm a keyboard kind-a-girl myself. -- Julie
    • by bill_kress (99356)

      You can't see a pure tablet working? Check out the iPod touch...

      • You can't see a pure tablet working? Check out the iPod touch...

        But do not forget I mentioned form factor. Simply put, keys on devices the size of the touch are not REAL keyboards. I personally prefer the virtual version on the iPhone which I can at least make larger in some cases, but can type OK as is unlike most mobile keypads (even the Blackberry I did not like though I know plenty do). So the Touch is really a pad, not a notebook...

        When you get to the size of a piece of paper, it's a different device

    • by Knara (9377)

      It's terribly useful in those niches, however, *if its done correctly*.

      My interest in the niche is the art/drawing tablet + laptop aspect. Basically a Wacom tablet slapped on top of a CPU.

      This product already exists, of course, though the implementation quality varies widely.

    • by fermion (181285)
      No one would have thought that laptops would overtake the desktop market, but here we are. The reason for this is not just smaller size, but often dramatically reduced costs over desktops. Sure you can't upgrade, but the laptop can be a very inexpensive machine.

      This is what i think will happen to the tablet. We are talking about a solid state machine, no movable parts. This increases reliability, and decreases costs. As long as the machine can do what people want, there would be no reason to pay more

  • Conspiracy! (Score:5, Interesting)

    by pwnies (1034518) * <j@jjcm.org> on Monday December 07, 2009 @04:43PM (#30358116) Homepage Journal
    The entire marketing drama behind all this was all a ploy. Call me crazy, but think about it: Market a new device that does some amazing stuff at a ridiculously low price. So low that you could never make a profit. Wait til all the news sites pick it up. Then stage a coup. During that coup have a takeover, and re-release the device at a sensible price under a different name. Free marketing.

    Brb gotta go make a tin foil hat now.
  • I'm not going to touch this with a ten foot pole... and not touching the device, either.

  • by nweaver (113078) on Monday December 07, 2009 @04:57PM (#30358276) Homepage

    The CrunchPad model only made sense at the low price: something inexpensive and universal.

    But the low price never made sense. Apple doesn't make much money on the iPod touch, and they have all the huge economies of scale, and its still costs $200 for the 8 GB model. Add in a MUCH larger screen and bigger battery and of course the price will balloon.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by argent (18001)

      Apple doesn't make anything that doesn't get them at least 30% margins.

  • Assuming Arrington really has a legitimate stake in the thing, I suggest we boycott it until Rathakrishnan cries uncle. If he has no market for it, then his 'theft' gains him nothing.

  • Oy vey
  • Bad Juju (Score:3, Funny)

    by Culture20 (968837) on Monday December 07, 2009 @05:10PM (#30358436)
    I feel bad things for this company's future. Bad Juju, bad Mojo.
  • Cautious (Score:3, Interesting)

    by SEWilco (27983) on Monday December 07, 2009 @05:26PM (#30358606) Journal
    I do like the Fusion Garage explanation of the situation. I look forward to Arrington's response.
    • Re:Cautious (Score:5, Interesting)

      by atamido (1020905) on Tuesday December 08, 2009 @12:28AM (#30362002)

      Ooh, just found this in the Google Cache of Fusiongarage's blog [74.125.155.132] (blog is now removed).

      From January 19th, 2009

      There is an air of excitement permeating through Fusion Garage at the moment. Michael Arrington of Techcrunch just wrote an update on the Techcrunch Tablet Prototype B.

      It’s our software that is running on the tablet as demonstrated in the videos embedded in the article. We continue to work with Louis Monier on the feature set and the user experience. We are thrilled with this progress and would like to take the opportunity to thank Michael and Louis for giving us the opportunity to work with them on the Techcrunch Tablet.

      Its early days yet but we are big believers of the Browser As An Operating System and the Techcrunch Tablet Initiative.

      A nice way to begin 2009 here at FusionGarage !

      And then February 4th, 2009

      The collaboration with the Crunchpad project happened as a result of meetings we had with Mike Arrington and co, subsequent to TC50. We worked closely with Louis Monier in getting the software in shape for the hardware prototype B. We continue to work with them in getting the software in shape to make crunchpad a easy to use device. This is where we stand as of prototype-B: (Details over at TechCrunch’s update )

      Then from the PCMag piece today,

      Simply put, however, Arrington was unable to deliver, Rathakrishnan said. As a result, Fusion Garage completed the development of the OS, hired the necessary expertise to complete the hardware side of the equation, solved remaining technology issues, and worked on arrangements with OEMs.

      Fusion Garage secured funding from its shareholders, which now totals $3 million, he said.

      Rathakrishnan acknowledged that "many conversations" did take place with Arrington and that Arrington set up CrunchPad Inc., which would have been a vehicle for distribution of the device, but "ultimately nothing came out" of that. No contracts of any kind were ever signed, he said.

      "TechCrunch didn't contribute a single line of code," Rathakrishnan said. "It was Fusion Garage that brought the device from the dead."

      That doesn't sound very consistent with the blog posts.

  • Yes (Score:2, Funny)

    by hallucinogen (1263152)
    Joo = yes in Finnish yesyes Well, at least they didn't name it "ei ei" :p
  • Video conference (Score:3, Interesting)

    by tulmad (25666) on Monday December 07, 2009 @05:45PM (#30358806)

    If you saw any of the video conference (live blog at http://www.engadget.com/2009/12/07/fusion-garage-crunchpad-video-conference-liveblog/ [engadget.com]), that dude even looks like a scheister.

  • by ClosedSource (238333) on Monday December 07, 2009 @05:57PM (#30358958)

    Get Back.

  • by haruchai (17472) on Monday December 07, 2009 @05:58PM (#30358966)

      because it'll prove, once and for all, that there's really no intelligent life down here.
    And the new name sucks ass. Will the call the kid's version the PooPoo?

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