German Tablet WePad On Unlikely Road To iPad Challenge

If you thought “iPad” was a silly name, wait ’til you hear about “WePad“…

We’ve refrained from covering the mooted new entrant to the nascent tablet space until now because the idea of a small, independent iPad challenger from Germany sounded like it would collapse like CrunchPad before emerging from vapourware.

But Neofonie, the Berlin-based company behind the gadget last night held a launch event for about 100 journalists – and, despite looking identical on the outside, WePad is apparently everything iPad’s not

The WePad is extensible, packing two USB ports, slots for memory and SIM cards, multitasking and an integrated webcam. And it’s open, basing its WePad OS on a Linux variant that supports Flash, Java and access to Android Marketplace and other app stores through its WePad Store “meta-store”.

The WePad website doesn’t refer to “iPad” by name, but WePad handed journalists apples at its launch event and the subtext is clear: “Some people seem to think life is all about the I, and the Me, Me, Me … When you