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Kobo Designs Android-based Tablet to Compete with Kindle and iPad 2; Named Kobo Vox

Kobo has designed its first Android-based tablet device to taken on the Kindle Fire and the Apple iPad 2.

The Kobo Vox tablet device, which will retail for $199, allows users to surf the web, download and use apps and read Kobo ebooks.The Android-based tablet is available for pre-order now and will hit the market on October 28th, a lot earlier than the November 15 launch of the Kindle Fire.

The device is priced similar to the Kindle Fire, with a $199 price tag, which is less than half the price of the $499 Apple iPad.

The device, which takes its name from ‘Vox populi’, which means the voice of the people, comes with heavy social networking integration with Facebook and Twitter. Kobo Vox comes with the Reading Life social networking platform and Kobo Pulse.

“We have a whole new color & enhanced book experience with rich color content for all ages – comics, travel guides, cookbooks, even children's books that read to you. You can experience so much more with Kobo Vox – it’s got preloaded apps for magazines, newspapers, music, social networks, games, a dictionary, an appstore, and of course, email and web browsing,” said the company.

The device runs on a custom version of Android and comes with a 7-inch display. Kobo Vox also features support for Wi-Fi, 8GB internal memory, unlimited access to music from RDIO and a battery life of up to 7 hours.