Google holds back Android Honeycomb; Asus releases the source code

Control-freak accusations are unfair, Google's Android boss argues

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It requires Android apps to pass basic compatibility requirements, and has had a program to enforce compatibility since the early days of commercial Android development, he said.

It's the compatibility program Google is using to enhance control, according to BusinessWeek, which quotes anonymous sources saying the very lax compatibility enforcement has tightened up to the point that only Rubin can give final approval to new apps or system adaptations.

There has been no effort to standardize Android for one chipset – such as the Nexus tablet it and LG are collaborating on an dplan to release later this year.

It's purely a development issue, Rubin argued.

"We continue to be an open source platform and will continue releasing source code when it is ready," Rubin's Android blog on Honeycomb reads. "The Android team is still hard at work to bring all the new Honeycomb features to phones. As soon as this work is completed, we’ll publish the code. This temporary delay does not represent a change in strategy. We remain firmly committed to providing Android as an open source platform across many device types."

While developers have been waiting for Honeycomb, by the way, Intel has finished work on the low-power Oak Trail chips it designed for tablets as a direct competitor for chips from ARM, which owns most of the microprocessor market for tablets.

About 35 products are under development using Oak Trail and will ship at the manufacturer's discretion, Intel announced.

Given the sudden explosion in tablet sales and predictions from Gartner, among others, that tablets will sell more units than PCs this year and that Android will be a runner-up to iOS in a vastly larger tablet market by 2015, the pressure is obviously on both Google and the OEMs.

Doubts cast by GigaOm on the assumptions behind Gartner's projections only make the risk and the pressure greater for non-iPad tablet makers by pointing out there's probably a lot more room for disruptive new products than Gartner assumes, which would bump aside both Apple and Google.

Anyone who comes late to this party, the reasoning seems to be, will miss out on the fun.

Photo Credit: 

Asus Transformer tablet PC

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