There have been quite a few e-Note devices launched in recent times and the new PineNote from the Hong Kong-based Pine 64 is the latest to join that list. Just prior to that, we have seen the TopJoy Butterfly being announced which too comes across as a tablet and eReader combo with note-taking capabilities.
Here we discuss how the two square up.
Before proceeding further, there is one thing that needs to be cleared up right at the beginning, that there are actually three devices in the fray. For there are two models of the TopJoy Butterfly – 6-inch and 7.8-inch versions – that is going to be available.
Both the Butterfly models come with DES Slurry color e-paper display though it is the 7.8-inch model that features an EMR layer and supports stylus operations. It is a capacitive touchscreen panel while the device can switch between Black & White and color modes. In Black & White mode, the pixel density stands at 300 PPI though it gets halved to 150 PPI in color mode.
In comparison, the PineNote comes with a 10.1-inch E Ink display having a resolution of 1404 × 1872 pixels, which translates to a pixel density of 227 DPI. The display has a 3:4 aspect ratio and can display 16 levels of grayscale. Another positive with the display is its 60 Hz refresh rate, which is among the highest among its peers. It is also going to be a front-lit display with user-adjustable colors, with the option to switch from cool white to warm amber.
Hardware and build
Both the 6-inch and 7.8-inch models of the Butterfly have the same basic hardware setup. That comprises a quad-core 1.8GHz processor that works in tandem with 2 gigs of RAM and 32 GB of ROM. The device runs Android 11 though there is no access to the Play Store. That means users will have to look at third-party sources for their app requirements. The devices support the EPUB, FB2, MOBI, RTF, PDF, and TXT eBook formats. The bigger model comes with integrated speakers as well as noise-canceling mics though the smaller version misses out on that.
Powering the PineNote is an ARM-based Rockchip RK3566 quad-core chipset that is coupled to 4 GB RAM and 128 GB of eMMC flash storage. The device also features a pair of mics and speaker systems while the USB Type-C port allows for charging and data transfer roles. Plus, the tablet is 2.4/5GHz AC Wi-Fi enabled as well. For its OS, PineNote runs a custom Linux kernel though the company said they are working to port to mainline Linux sometime soon.
The PineNote also boasts of a robust build thanks to the inner chassis made of a magnesium alloy. The back also offers a layer of plastic to allow for better grip. Also, it is going to be just over 7mm in thickness, which makes it among the thinner tablet devices out there. For reference, the recently launched Kobo Elipsa is 7.6mm in thickness.
Price and Availability
Coming to price, the PineNote is slated to sell for $399. The tablet will also come with a magnetic cover and an EMR pen though it is not known if those are included in the above-mentioned price tag. In any case, the PineNote is going to be compatible with just about any Wacom EMR pen out there. Availability starts from October though that would be for developers.
With the two Butterfly devices, the company website mentions $159 for the smaller model though, for the 7.8-inch version, price is still a closely guarded secret. Both models are slated to go on sale starting November this year.
With a keen interest in tech, I make it a point to keep myself updated on the latest developments in the world of technology and gadgets. That includes smartphones or tablet devices but stretches to even AI and self-driven automobiles as well, the latter being my latest fad. Besides writing, I like watching videos, reading, listening to music, or experimenting with different recipes. Motion picture is another aspect that interests me a lot and maybe I’ll make a film sometime in the future.