Verizon Wireless confirmed it is partnering with Google on an Android-based tablet computer to compete with Apple's iPad in the burgeoning space. The tie-up confirms that the fact that Apple sold 1 million-plus iPads in 28 days has not gone unnoticed by other mobile computing players, analysts said. IDC analyst Al Hilwa said he expects all the major smartphone players to have pads leveraging their app stores and SDKs in the next 12 months, largely thanks to the iPad.
If the latest rumors of a tablet tie-up with Google are
true, Verizon Wireless seems to be looking to be to Google's Android platform
what AT&T is to Apple's iPhone and eventually, its iPad.
Google and Verizon are becoming bosom buddies.
Verizon already enjoys offering phones based on Google's popular Android mobile operating system
, backing devices such as the Motorola
Droid and the HTC Droid Incredible with a $100 million
Verizon CEO Lowell McAdam provided more fodder for
speculation May 11 when he confirmed
the company is working on a tablet with Google based on Android.
No other details were provided and Google declined to dignify
McAdam's comments, providing only a general comment about Android being
an open-source platform, with vendors free to do what they wish with it.
Still, the mere mention of a Verizon-Google tablet made
industry watchers drool at the anticipation of some sorely needed competition for the
selling more than 1 million devices
in 28 days, the iPad triggered d??Â«j??Ã from
June 2007, when Apple successfully launched its first iPhone. That device took
more than two months to sell 1 million units, making the iPad's first month of
sales all the more impressive.
While the news of a Verizon-Google tablet attracted a lot
of attention in the media, analysts largely shrugged.
IDC analyst Al Hilwa said he expects all the major
smartphone players to have pads leveraging their app-stores and SDKs in the
next 12 months, largely thanks to the iPad.
"[The tablet computer] has been established as
successful and desirable by users because it leverages the smartphone app
distribution channels vendors have set up already and it leverages the same or
similar application development models and SDKs, etc... and of course it
leverages the user interface, touch, etc...
"These devices are compelling
universal content consumption devices and which straddle smartphone and PC and
probably will end up growing at the expense of both. They are inherently
connected so the carriers see an opportunity to sell data plans and want to
land-grab the customers from their competitors."