Mike Arrington's CrunchPad web tablet, already several prototypes in, is quickly bubbling to reality reports Bits: There's going to be an announcement in July or August, and it'll be available "as soon as possible."
Arrington's incorporated a separate company, called CrunchPad, and has apparently spent two-thirds of the last six months working on it with his 15-man team from Fusion Garage.
It's been iterated a bunch before, but worth saying again, that the Atom-powered touchscreen CrunchPad is strictly for internet consumption—it boots directly into the WebKit browser and there's no hard drive or keyboard, though you can plug in a keyboard if you want. It does support for Flash, so Arrington's claim that compared to netbooks, "most people will find it works as good as a netbook or better" for getting their internet on sounds pretty reasonable, given its 12-inch screen. Pointedly, it's not meant to compete with Apple's mythical tablet, whenever it graces the world.
I'd take the under $US300 CrunchPad over a netbook any day, since it seems like it'll surpass them at the one thing they were supposedly designed to do—eat the internet. And it still blows my mind it took a tech blogger to actually make it happen. [Bits]