So with all the hullabaloo of the Apple WWDC keynote behind us, let's turn our attention back to Android. There've been a couple of interesting items that have come up recently that I wanted to recap.
First, it seems pretty certain at this point that we'll see an ASUS-developed "Nexus Tablet" when Google I/O rolls around on June 27th. The pseudo-confirmation of the long-running rumor came from Android Authority who got the tip from an ASUS representative at Computex earlier this month. This is going to be a 7" tablet with a quad core Tegra processor. According to some rumors it'll be running Jelly Bean, the next iteration of Android. I'm going to speculate that tablets given out at I/O will be running a beta version of Jelly Bean but that it'll be a few months before consumers see that version of Android hitting their devices. The best news is that Google and ASUS are aiming for a $150-$250 price point.
Still a lot of questions, of course. What's the screen resolution going to be, how much storage space will it have and most importantly, when will it be available to consumers? We should find out more when Google I/O rolls around in a couple of weeks.
In the meantime let's talk about more concrete news. Acer is finally taking pre-orders for its Iconia A700 tablet. This is, on paper at least, a beautiful machine. It's a 10.1" Android 4 tablet with a Tegra 3 (quad core) processor and 32 GBs of storage on-board, plus support for up to an additional 64 GB via MicroSD card. The screen is 1920 x 1200 in a 16:10 ratio putting it somewhere around 224 PPI. If you get tired of looking at that 1080P screen you can use the built-in mini-HDMI port to pipe video and Dobly surround to your home theater. The A700 weighs 1.47 lbs and is a little under a half-inch thick (.43"). It comes in silver or black and the best part is the cost: just $449.00. That's what Acer is selling the Iconia 510 for, so I expect we'll see a price cut there.
It's nice to see some good news coming out of the Android tablet world. A $200 7" Nexus Tablet running pure Android might loosen the Amazon Fire's deathgrip on the non-iPad tablet market and it's nice to see someone besides Apple focusing on better screens. I'm not as sure about the idea of the Nexus Tablet running Jelly Bean, though. Google is, I think, pushing out Android revs too quickly. Hardly anyone is running Ice Cream Sandwich and Google is already on to the next thing?! Makes it tough on app developers. But we'll see. Maybe we'll get a 'consumer' version of the Galaxy Nexus running ICS later this summer. I hope we do, anyway!
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