Google's Android tablet market share is less than spectacular, but Android godfather Andy Rubin said the company will "double down" on tablets on 2012. Does that portend a Nexus tablet? Perhaps.
Evidence of a
Google-styled tablet has yet to be confirmed from Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) or anyone
else, but it now seems likely the search giant is indeed launching a tablet in
the mold of the "pure Google experience" Nexus smartphones sometime
Galaxy Tab lineup, Android tablets have yet to catch on.
creator Andy Rubin, who serves as senior vice president of mobile and digital
content for Google, acknowledged at Mobile World Congress (MWC) that while
there are more than 300 million smartphones running the open-source operating
system, only 12 million tablets run Android to date.
According to The
Rubin said at a press roundtable the 12 million number is "not
insignificant, but less than I'd expect it to be if you really want to
be the overly ambitious goal here when Google should simply try to compete
first. Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) has sold some 55 million iPads to date and is
gearing up to unveil the iPad 3 next month.
said Rubin according to The New
, is that consumers don't view Android as a viable slate
option when they "walk into a Best Buy and see a bunch of Android tablets
A common cause
for failing devices is the cookie-cutter dilemma: There are dozens of tablets running
some flavor of Android Honeycomb, but these devices have few distinguishing
features. Compounding the issue is that there are very few Android applications
tailored for tablets in Google's Android Market, or any other application
said that Google would "double down" on Android tablets in 2012. What
does that mean exactly? Rubin declined to say, but it's likely an allusion to
the long-rumored Nexus tablet, which Google
Chairman Eric Schmidt hinted at in December when he said Google was designing a
tablet of "the highest quality."
hardware partners, such as HTC and Samsung, have designed Nexus smartphones.
models include only software Google wants on them, meaning they eschew carrier
bloatware. They're also the first handsets to get new versions of the Android
operating system. Samsung's Galaxy Nexus, for example, was the first Android
4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) smartphone when it launched in December.
logical Nexus tablet partner choice would be Samsung, which Rubin acknowledged
as enjoying a modicum of success.
possible, yet unlikely, Motorola Mobility is a Nexus tablet partner contender.
Google is acquiring the OEM, so it would look especially suspect if Google
started tapping it now of all times to be a Nexus partner.
to the speculation are recent comments from DisplaySearch analyst Richard Shim,
CNET that the Google-branded tablet
would have a 7-inch display with a 1,280
by 800 resolution. The device could go into production this April, with
manufacturers pumping out 1.5 million to 2 million units.