Microsoft gives 5000 developers Windows 8 tablets

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Windows 8 Developer Preview tablet

Today at the BUILD conference Microsoft is busy showing off some of the new features of Windows 8, with many of them being part of the new tablet experience. But Microsoft wasn’t just showing off the tablet features, the Redmond-based company also decided to give the developers in attendance tablets of their own to try out.

Microsof is giving all 5000 developers and press at the BUILD conference Samsung tablets preloaded with the Windows 8 Developer Preview. That way the developers can test out a few of the features and build their own apps for the platform. It’s only a few features because apps like email and calendar aren’t included in the Developer Preview. The only Metro apps that are included in the preview are Internet Explorer and a few demo apps from Microsoft. Microsoft doesn’t want to put everything out there just yet, just enough for developers to get a feel for the new OS so they can build apps that can be ready for release.

The tablets themselves aren’t too bad, either. Theyy’re very similar to the Samsung Series 7 tablets, with a few changes. There’s a dual-core Intel Core i5 CPU powering the unit because Microsoft isn’t quite ready to show off Windows 8 running ARM. The tablet has an 11.6-inch screen with a resolution of 1366×768, and also includes USB ports, an HDMI port, microSD card slot, and pen input support. Should you want to use it, there’s also a docking station with Ethernet port as well as more USB and HDMI ports. To top it all off, Microsoft is throwing in a 1 year AT&T 3G plan with 2GB of data a month. Overall, not a bad tablet, it’ll be nice to see what the ARM-based tablets look like next year, though.

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