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Purism introduces privacy-focused 2-in-1 tablet

Engadget Engadget 20/05/2016 Roberto Baldwin
© Provided by Engadget

If you're looking for a high-end tablet that also doubles as a laptop you're usually in the market for a Microsoft Surface Pro or the Apple iPad Pro. Purism thinks there needs to be a third option. One that's packed with open-source software and won't share your private data with giant tech companies. With that in mind, it announced the Librem line of tablets starting at $599 that are currently available for pre-order on Indiegogo.

Like their laptop predecessors, the Librem 10 and 11-inch tablets are running free and open source software and are targeted at users that want more privacy than is available from major manufacturers. Both devices run PureOS 3.0 Linux and have privacy protecting services like Tor, HTTPS Everywhere and ad blocker Privacy Badger pre-installed. The company is working towards getting both devices QubesOS (the OS of choice of Edward Snowden) certified.

On the hardware front, the Librem 10 uses an Intel Atom processor while the more powerful 11-inch version runs on a Core M. Both ship with a keyboard dock and can be attached to external monitors. To further its dedication to security and privacy, both devices have hardware shutdown switches for the camera, Bluetooth, WiFi and microphone.

Purism CEO Todd Weaver told Engadget that the company wants to sell its privacy and security focused computers to everyone, not just the slightly paranoid. He said, "our end goal is targeting the every day computer user and providing them with an alternative."

But, the company's long-term goal is to build a smartphone with all the security and privacy elements found in its other products. Weaver said the tablet is part of an evolution to getting a phone out there. The biggest obstacle to that happening right now is the cellular system not being secure enough for Purism.

In the meantime, the Librem 10 will set you back $599 while the 11-inch Librem is currently available for pre-order for $999. After the crowdfunding campaign that price will go up to $1,299. Purism says both tablets will ship in September of this year.


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