LG Optimus: world's first 3D tablet debuts at MWC

LG announced the latest contender for the title of iPad 2 killer at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona today, in the shape of the 'world's first 3D tablet', the LG Optimus Pad.

The 8.9-inch widescreen tablet is one of the first to boast Android 3.0 'Gingerbread', the first version of Google's OS designed from the ground up for tablet computing.

Powered by a 1GHz Nvidia Tegra 2 dual-core processor, the LG sports a 1280x768 capacitive touchscreen display with an aspect ratio of 15:9. But the company's biggest boast for its new proddable computer is that it's the world's first to feature a 3D camera and screen.

Yep, that's right - LG is cashing in on IT's latest white elephant by including the ability to capture three-dimensional images of your family and friends gurning into the screen, and even allows you to transfer them to a 3D TV, or upload them via YouTube 3D.

But the area in which LG hopes to better Apple's forthcoming tablet is entertainment, with the ability to output 1080p Full HD video TVs and enough graphics grunt to run 'console-quality' games supplied courtesy of Nvidia's forthcoming Tegra Zone app.

Business types will have to sate themselves with the prospect of videoconferencing - though we hope to the heavens that's one feature that hasn't been given a 3D makeover.

Users will be able to enjoy 'true' Android tablet computing, thanks to the new 'Honeycomb' version 3.0 of the OS. This promises multi-tasking apps within a "more intuitive, PC-like interface", and a new generation of apps specially tailored for bigger screens. Titles include Google eBooks, Google Maps 5 and Google Talk - plus a host more, with full access to Google's Android Marketplace.

The LG Optimus is due to start shipping in March. No firm prices or release dates have been set as yet.