1&1′s 7-inch SmartPad is the most unlikely Android tablet you’ll ever see

We knew at Computex that tablets were on track to completely take over the world, but now it’s official: a German internet provider has just revealed that it’ll soon be offering a branded tablet PC of its own. You heard right — a German ISP is making a tablet. The delightfully named SmartPad is a 7-inch, touchscreen-based slate that’ll eventually support Android 2.2 (v1.6 will be pre-installed), and there’s also inbuilt WiFi and an optional 3G module for those looking to “stay connected.” It seems as if the company is still hammering out the final specifications, but we are told to expect an SD card reader (2GB will be included), a USB socket, a 500MHz ARM11 processor, 256MB of RAM and a proprietary app store that’ll undoubtedly enrage you

Microsoft Kin is dead

We’re learning this afternoon that Microsoft’s Kin line, for all practical purposes, is riding off into the sunset just a few short weeks after its release. Sources close to Microsoft tell us that Andy Lees has rolled Kin into the Windows Phone 7 team and has canceled the existing product’s launch later this year in Europe on news that sales weren’t as strong as expected. Speaking of sales, Verizon’s already-launched Kin One and Kin Two are soldiering on for the time being, but for how long is anyone’s guess

Switched On: Token gestures

Each week Ross Rubin contributes Switched On , a column about consumer technology. In early 2005, even after the launch of the Nintendo DS, Switched On critiqued pen computing , noting that it was too cumbersome and unnatural to become a mainstream input method

HP Mini 100e gets official for the little kickers

We hate to crush your dreams of a World Cup-branded netbook — and we know that’s exactly what that looks like up there — but it’s really just an example of how schools can customize HP’s new 10.1-inch Mini 100e. Sorry to have killed everything you’ve ever had to live for, but doesn’t it make you happy to know that the kids can watch Justin Bieber NOVA videos on netbooks with different colors and designs? Rhetorical questions aside, HP’s finally sharing the details on the education-aimed laptop we spotted a few weeks ago at Computex, and as expected, it has the typical netbook internals, including an Intel Atom N455 processor, 1GB of RAM, and a choice of decently sized hard drives.

iPed tablet running Android 2.1 spotted in the blurry, blurry wild

The Orphan iPed M16′s shown up in the wild, and thankfully, it’s running Android 2.1. This 10.2-inch, cloney-looking fellow has a 1GHz ARM Cortex A8 processor, 256MB of DDR2 RAM, 1GB of Nand ROM, plus a miniUSB port, Ethernet and Wifi, and a webcam

Canonical hearts tablets, but it’s not making a special Ubuntu for them

Um, whoops! It seems as if those earlier reports of Canonical crafting a special edition of Ubuntu specifically for tablets may have stemmed from taking certain quotes out of context, as a new interview over at Golem has confirmed that the company has no short-term plans to pursue that full-on tablet PC push that was so well hyped. It’s a bit of a bummer, honestly, with far too few legitimate tablet operating systems on the horizon; Windows 7 just feels a grown man’s OS, and there’s no telling if Windows Embedded Compact 7 will ever truly live up to its incredible potential.