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Spark: Linux-based tablet for €200 (£166) runs KDE’s Plasma Active interface

If you’re after a tablet that’s completely open and guaranteed to be free from any kind of locked bootloader nonsense, then the Spark could be the non-droid you’re looking for.

This is a 7-inch slate that comes with some respectable specs – a 1GHz ARM processor, 512MB of RAM, 4GB of internal storage – and a pretty nice price, €200 (£166).

From the pic above we can see that you get two mini USB connections, a microSD card slto for expansion and what looks like a mini HDMI port as well. No word on whether it features Wi-Fi or 3G radios – we’d expect the former at the very least.

The Spark runs Plasma Active, an open-source OS that’s based on Linux, peppered with elements of Qt which has been supported by the Mer project, an off-shoot of MeeGo. So the Spark ought to have a whiff of the old Nokia N900 and N9 about it.

Developer Aaron Seigo says “The content store [of the Spark] will offer great Free Culture artifacts such as digital books from Project Gutenberg,” in a post “as well as contents and apps for purchase.”

As well as this, there’s talk of partnerships with OwnCloud to allow for DropBox-style storage of your files and Qt/QML add-on apps for download.

No word on exactly when the Spark will be shipping just yet; Aaron will be sharing ordering information soon along with “more details on the hardware and software provided.” Intriguing.

Source: Aaron J Seigo via Ars Technica, Engadget


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