Verizon Wireless chief executive Lowell McAdam said Tuesday that his company is working with Google on a tablet computer.
The move is a competitive hedge against rival AT&T, which carries the Apple iPad tablet device, according to a report in the Wall Street Journal.
McAdam was quoted as saying that tablets are among the "next big wave of opportunities," and an evolutionary step in the carrier's relationship with Google. Verizon carries many of Google's top Android-based smartphones, including the Motorola Droid and HTC Droid Incredible.
"We're looking at all the things Google has in its archives that we could put on a tablet to make it a great experience," he reportedly said.
Silicon Alley Insider's Dan Frommer writes that the leak "looks like a Verizon executive giving the WSJ a story to get more leverage in his negotiations with Apple."
I agree. We can't jump to conclusions just yet when it comes to AT&T and Apple vs. Google and Verizon, since negotiations have been ongoing between Verizon and Apple for the iPhone, much less the iPad.
(Nothing to lose: Verizon. Everything to lose: Google.)
Business intentions aside, I wonder which manufacturer Google will partner with to make a tablet, and just how involved the company will be with the device.
Judging by its Android smartphone offerings, the more involved the company is in the vision, the better the end product -- a necessity for a product that offers "an experience" like a slate tablet computer.
Can Google solve your mobile problems with an Android tablet? Or will it simply emulate and conquer?