Saturday, April 07, 2012

Google Nexus tablet pushed back until 'at least' June: report

Google's rumored co-branded Nexus tablet has been delayed until July at the earliest. Although Google and Asus already had a design ready to go in May, Google has decided to push back the release so it can modify the design, including trying to lower the price from the rumored $249.

The tablet currently has the following specs: a 7-inch screen, Ice Cream Sandwich (Android 4.0), NVIDIA Tegra 3 quad-core system-on-a-chip processor, wi-fi only. Amazon’s 7-inch Kindle Fire, which runs a forked version of Android 2.3 (Gingerbread) is the obvious Android target, but of course the main idea for the co-branded is to make an impact on the iPad's market share and the jump-start stalled Android tablet sales.

It was earlier rumored that the Google Nexus tablet would come in around $149 - $199. However, if the Nexus tablet includes features missing from the Kindle Fire, such as Bluetooth, camera(s), and a microSD card expansion slot, a higher price might be justified.

Apple is rumored to be working on a 7.85-inch version of the iPad, dubbed the iPad mini, which would fall right in place as yet another rival for the Nexus tablet.

Since Jelly Bean (Android 5.0) is scheduled for a launch earlier in 2H2012, there has been some talk about Google pushing the launch back still further, to after June so the device could sport that newer version of Android, but that seems unlikely, according to the source.

It's said, however, that Asus and Google are working together on the Nexus tablet in the same manner that other firms have worked with Google on prior Nexus smartphones.

In 2011, Android chief Andy Rubin described the process: once an OEM is selected for the next Nexus device, teams --- including from the OEM --- get together and work in the same building for nine to twelve months until the project is complete and shipped.

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