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The Nexus Tablet is a Given...But Will It Launch at Google I/O?

And will it ever go on sale?

The Nexus Tablet is a Given...But Will It Launch at Google I/O?
 
 

Today brings the first rumor of a pure-Google tablet. Russian site Mobile Review has received information that Google recently asked LG to create a Nexus tablet that would showcase Android Honeycomb, raw and unaltered by carrier junk. The tablet is expected to launch in "mid-summer" or Autumn.

To be honest, this news was a foregone conclusion after the launch of the Nexus S. Google places a lot of value on having a smartphone line with carefully selected hardware and a clean version of Android. The Nexus phones, while not great sellers, give Google employees and Android developers a "baseline" device to work with.

Google has made it very clear that they consider Android tablets to be a different beast from Android smartphones. Honeycomb is a dedicated tablet version of the open-source OS. It makes sense that Google would want a "Nexus" for the slate form-factor.

The only real question here is whether or not this tablet will be for internal testing use, like the CR-48 Chrome OS notebook, or an actual product line. I'm leaning against the latter. Google has been working very closely with several big manufacturers- Motorola and HTC and Samsung- and they may be leery of upsetting their partners.

The choice of LG as the Nexus tablet manufacturer- if true- could indicate some meaningful favoritism on Google's part. I can think of two possible features of the LG Optimus Pad that may have piqued the search engine's interest. The obvious one would be 3D. But I think the Pad's uniquely narrow design is the culprit. Of all the tablets I've played with, the Optimus (G-Slate) is the most comfortable to use one-handed.

The Google I/O conference hits on May 10-11. It seems likely that the Nexus tablet will see its big reveal then. If they follow the CR-48's lead, the tablet will go out to convention attendees and a select list of developers and partners. If the Nexus S ends up being a complete product line, it may end up with its own special launch event. We're closing in on the moment of truth, at any rate. And Google tends to be a leaky sieve when it comes to rumors.

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<a href="/latest_stories/all/all/5" rel="author">Robert Evans</a>
The excitement about new smartphones, tablets and anything mobile drive Robert to unearth the latest rumors and developments in this fast moving space. He adopted 4G as soon as it become available and knows where the mobile market is going.
Robert can be contacted directly at robert@i4u.com.

 

 

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