Mike Arrington’s Smartest Move Yet: Bailing On The CrunchPad

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Michael Arrington held on to his CrunchPad fantasy as long as he could.  But now that he has ditched it, he looks like a genius.

The CrunchPad tablet computer Mike helped develop is now called the JooJoo.  It is being built by a company from Singapore called Fusion Garage that Mike used to have some sort of partnership with.

The JooJoo (CrunchPad reborn) is going to be one of the first, most gruesome victims of the Apple iPad. Apple’s tablet, unveiled last week, will cost the same $499 and significantly outperform the JooJoo in every way. There is no reason on earth to buy a JooJoo instead of an iPad.

Late last year, Mike and the CrunchPad team split up, and Mike made it sound like he got screwed. He sued the company.  Fusion Garage filed a motion last week to dismiss the case. It’s hard to say what really happened, but at the time, Mike made himself look like a victim who messed up his contract with Fusion Garage before he could assemble investors and acquire the company.

But today, Mike should be smiling!  Now he doesn’t have to waste time and money to get steamrolled by Apple. And he can delight as his former partners get squashed — and thank heavens that they aren’t him.

It would have been different if Mike and his team could have made the original CrunchPad dream a reality: A simple Web tablet for $200. But that was a hallucination, and now the $499 JooJoo is toast.

(Would it be too big a leap to think that this might be the real reason for the CrunchPad-Fusion Garage breakup — that Mike saw this writing on the wall?  Mike’s no fool, after all.)