Dell 5-Inch Streak Device Is Missing Link Between Phones & Tablets

Lost in yesterday's announcement that Dell will ship the 5-inch Streak device to O2 is the fact that there will be other Streaks coming to the market soon.

They will feature 7-inch and 10-inch displays which will make them direct competitors to the slew of tablet computers coming to the market over the next few months.

More importantly, Dell's Streak is the first attempt by a top-tier company to bridge the gap between the tablet and the smartphone. Indeed, mobile internet devices, otherwise known as MIDs, might be considered as an extension of smartphones.

The Streak for example shares exactly the same features as a smaller smartphone except for its bigger screen but is presented as a tablet rather than a smartphone, despite the fact that it will be able to make calls.

The symbiosis between ARM's architecture and Android is what has made it possible. Both elements have evolved and have been flawlessly adapted by manufacturers to suit both form factors.

The latest version of Android, Froyo, not only brings in a number of major features but also improves performance across the board while ARM's Cortex architecture is flexible enough to scale from entry level smartphones to more powerful, desktop-ready applications.

It will therefore not be a surprise to see more smartphone manufacturers come up with tablet-like devices in the wake of a quasi-certain iPad success. Indeed, Toshiba, RIM and Samsung are already apparently working on such products.