The Dell Streak: A Small Step Up From A PDA, One Ginormous Phone For All (Wo)mankind

Many moons ago I reviewed a little product called the Archos 5 Internet Tablet, one of the first Android devices I’d ever played with for any length of time. It was a bit like an Android phone except without the phone part, and it was great for watching video and reading books, webpages, etc. Essentially it was a PDA, but that’s an old-fashioned term that went out with the 90s! These days such things are called tablets. Or iPod touch.

Anyway, I quite liked the Archos 5, though it was early days with Android tablets and it was hard to make out what real use it would be. I think we got a bit caught up in how it wasn’t a phone instead of thinking of it as an updated and awesome PDA-like thing. That’s how I came to think of it, and that’s why I liked it.

But, alas, the tablet had to go back and I sought solace in other Android devices. I’m a fan of the Motorola Droid and I’m really starting to dig the HTC Evo 4G. But in all honesty, the phone I really want is an Archos 5 Internet Tablet you can make calls from. So imagine my excitement when we heard about the Dell Streak at CES this year. And now it’s finally got a release date (end of July) and a price ($499).

I did not get to touch the Streak myself, alas, but I know its roughly the same size as the Archos 5 as it has a 5-inch screen and looks pretty thin. 5 inches seems huge for a phone, I know, but honestly what I want is a small tablet that happens to make calls. The Evo 4G is a pretty massive phone, and that mans I can view web pages, read my RSS feeds, and watch video on a reasonably-sized screen. The Streak will hopefully give me all that and more.

You can’t see, but I’m bouncing up and down right now just thinking about it.

The price is a bit steep, yes. $499 is about what the least expensive iPad costs. But that iPad doesn’t have 3G. Plus, that’s only for the unlocked version of the device. Through the carrier (AT&T) it will be less, we just don’t know how much less yet. Still, I’ll be buying the unlocked one, anyway, since I have no intention of switching to AT&T.

Hopefully we’ll get the Streak in for review well before the launch date. Then guess who’s going to lobby to do the review?

  • This interests me strangely (I am totally selective in my geekitude and have seen nothing that attracted me in the istuff or blackberries or all that other little squinchy tech that people were pushing — I have bifocals, fat fingers, and some incipient arthritis).

    But this makes me feel all happy — and I plan to check it out.

    Thank you!

  • WHYYYY. I thought I was over crushes on gear. I have an iPad, but if this thing turns out to have a) decent battery life, I will seriously consider selling my iPad and picking it up.

    I mean, it’s big, but not too big. Probably won’t be anywhere near as heavy or awkward to hold as the iPad, and it will come unlocked and ready to be hooked up to T-mobile. I will miss apps like Instapaper, but not THAT much.

  • Jed

    I’ve been intrigued by what I’ve heard about the Streak.

    Do you happen to know the physical dimensions? I know it’s 10mm thick, but I’m not clear on the length and width. (Not screen dimensions, but whole body dimensions.)

    Also, do you happen to know the weight?

    The discussions of it that I’ve seen haven’t mentioned those numbers, or else I’ve just missed the info.