If you read my hands-on coverage of Verizon's Motorola Droid, or watched the Droid vs iPhone Dogfight, you know that I love the phone's huge touchscreen and Android 2.0 software, but wasn't so keen on the device's slide-out QWERTY board. I went so far as to say as I'd rather have a touchscreen-only version of the device, since I hated typing on its flat-flat-flat hard keyboard and thought I'd prefer a thinner, lighter phone that relied solely on a virtual QWERTY.
Well Hellloooooooo, Sholes!
Photos published this morning show what's being called Codename: Motorola Sholes Tablet, and it looks like the device I wish Droid could be. If the specs are to be believed, you'll get the same 3.7" 800x 480 touchscreen, 550MHz TI OMAP 3430 processor, and 3.5mm audio jack as Droid, but lose the hard keyboard and gain an 8MP camera and HDMI-out port in the process. Throw Android 2.x and UMTS/HSPA into the mix, and you've got me interested ... particularly if this puppy supports pinch-to-zoom Web browsing like the Moto Milestone (Europe's version of Droid).
No word on when or where we might see Sholes for sale, but between this and the long-rumored HTC "Passion" (or is it "Dragon"?), fans of thin, touch-only Android phones may have lots to cheer about in early 2010.