Will Motorola finally give us an Android iPad competitor?

Will Motorola finally give us an Android iPad competitor?

Summary: Motorola has already given Verizon a couple of worthy iPhone competitors in its Droid and Droid X smartphones. The X especially has set a very high bar for smartphones in general and Android handsets in particular.

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Motorola has already given Verizon a couple of worthy iPhone competitors in its Droid and Droid X smartphones. The X especially has set a very high bar for smartphones in general and Android handsets in particular. As ZDNet's Jason Perlow pointed out today, though, Android tablets that can go head to head with the iPad have failed to materialize from major manufacturers or wireless carriers. If recent reports are to be believed, though, Motorola just might do it again with a 10" tablet in November.

Digital Trends reported today on an Android 3.0-based 10" tablet that may beat Dell, Asus, and others to market:

Although Motorola has yet to formally announce such a tablet, it did provide some hardware for a 7-inch tablet running Android at CES 2010, developed in partnership with Verizon, Nvidia and ICD....The so-called “Gingerbread” release of Android is rumored to bring with it a number a tablet-friendly features, including media streaming from PC libraries, a new user interface, and support for larger screens.

I, for one, can't get too excited about the tablet form factor. Too big to fit in my cargo shorts, too small to touch type (even if I could get really good at typing on a virtual keyboard), too big to hold up to my hear and make phone calls (assuming that someone decided to make a tablet that was also a phone, at least with a Bluetooth headset). It just never resonated with me. And yet Apple is buying more tablet displays than China can export because the iPad has been such an unequivocal success. Obviously, they resonate with somebody. Or several million somebodies.

So who's it going to be? Jason asked the same question and, regardless of my own feelings about tablets, I agree that it's an important one from an industry and competition perspective. Given their track record with the Droid, Droid X, and the upcoming Droid 2, my money is on Motorola to give us the first real iPad competitor.

Topics: Mobility, Android, Google, iPad

Christopher Dawson

About Christopher Dawson

Chris Dawson is a freelance writer, consultant, and policy advocate with 20 years of experience in education, technology, and the intersection of the two.

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24 comments
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  • RE: Will Motorola finally give us an Android iPad competitor?

    I think the hardware OEM is pretty immaterial - the real question is will Android (whatever they put in there) be up to snuff? If Google can get that right, then I think there are plenty of OEMs who can screw together a reasonable machine.

    It's the OS that makes the iPad great. That is where the problem lies for OEMs. None of us really know how far along Google are (as soon as Android is ready to go on this form factor - the OEMs won't be far behind).
    Jeremy-UK
    • RE: Will Motorola finally give us an Android iPad competitor?

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  • 15 million ipads in 2010

    it is really amazing how clueless the zdnet pundits are. especially chris here.

    when the ipad was announced they all laughed about the lack of a camera and usb port, saying, it won't sell, will be the iflop. when apple announced one million sold in a week, they said, it's only fanbois, it will be a niche thing.

    when apple announced that they had sold 3 million in less than three month (making more than 2 billion) they now say it is a toy, only for media consumption, when most of the fortune 500 companies are already testing or deploying it for corporate use (it is taking healthcare by storm also).

    apple can't fulfil orders, can't satisfy demand and has yet to expand it fully internationally. at a run rate of 1.5 million a month now (soon 2.5 million) they will easily sell 15 million ipads by year end.

    and yet the zdnet pundits still scratch their heads, don't know what it is for and the best part: most of them haven't even tried it - they wait for an android competitor (for ideological reasons) after they have given up on the prospects of anything coming out of redmond.

    sad, very sad.
    banned from zdnet
    • RE: Will Motorola finally give us an Android iPad competitor?

      @banned from zdnet That's great and all when you're first to market with a novel form-factor. Doesn't mean other OSes won't we as successful, if not more so than the iPad. The iPad's a nice device. I've kicked its tires, but it's still too restrictive for my tastes. There's certainly room for others to improve upon it.
      PacoBell
    • RE: Will Motorola finally give us an Android iPad competitor?

      @banned from zdnet well considering that they sold 3 million iPads worldwide. That translates to less than 1% of people buying one. Because tablets dont appeal to the average person.
      And just because the enterprise is looking at it, doesn't mean that anyone is rolling it out.
      Jimster480
      • RE: Will Motorola finally give us an Android iPad competitor?

        @Jimster480 I have seen your less than 1% argument before and have to laugh ever time. So what is your point really? Do you think there is any company out there that would be unhappy with selling their product to close to 1% of the world population in that time frame? Can you point me to another tech product that has done so let alone competing product? Until then maybe you should leave your pointless pathetic attempt at knocking the iPad to yourself and leave the discussion to the adults.

        @Economister So Android based phones are outselling the iPhone and that somehow means Android tablets will outsell the iPad? How exactly does the sales of phone mean anything here? First, the tablets have to come to market to sell anything let alone outsell the iPad. Second, are the sales figures for tablets going to be figured the same way they are for phones, flood the market with everything from high end comparables to low end crap and lump their sales figures together? For example a true comparison of sales should really be comparable products. Has there been one single Android phone that has outsold the iPhone or even all the comparably capable Android phones? Let?s be honest and not include all the low level phones that don't come close to comparing to the iPhone and high end Android phones. Personally I don?t care who has the most market share as it really doesn?t affect my life but an honest comparison would be great for a change.

        I personally hope we see some Android tablets soon. Just like in the phone market I want to see some competition because that?s how we all win no matter which platform you prefer or in some cases worship.
        non-biased
      • RE: Will Motorola finally give us an Android iPad competitor?

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    • Just wondering...

      @banned from zdnet

      what the relevance of your post is. Who will be the first to produce an Android tablet? What on earth does the success of the iPad have to do with that question?

      Some of you Apple fan boys really puzzle me sometimes.

      And by the way, the Android phones are outselling the iPhone. Soon Android tablets will outsell the iPad too.
      Economister
  • RE: Will Motorola finally give us an Android iPad competitor?

    Britney Spears sold millions also. I am waiting for another solution because the locked down ipad model doesnt work for me. I dont care who makes it, put a damn memory slot in it, the ability for more than one app, and a removable battery and ill be happy, but dont charge me a 100$ every 16-32gb.
    turrenti@...
    • RE: Will Motorola finally give us an Android iPad competitor?

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  • RE: Will Motorola finally give us an Android iPad competitor?

    @turrenti The IPAD model works fine for all those millions, you have to be difficult, different and plain pigheaded and ideological there are a hell of a lot of fantastic apps for the IPAD you can be one of the few people who because of you're hatred for anything Apple will resist until a DROID tab<br>comes even if that's 2011, keep waiting it may have some small advantages but one thing for sure it will always be one step behind.
    johnpall@...
    • RE: Will Motorola finally give us an Android iPad competitor?

      @johnpall Holy comma splice, Batman, use some grammar! I had to reread your dreck a couple times before I could make out your intent. If this is representative of the iPad crowd, I don't want any part in it =P
      PacoBell
  • RE: Will Motorola finally give us an Android iPad competitor?

    @Christopher Are you sure Android 3.0 == Gingerbread? Also, "too big to hold up to my hear" typo.
    PacoBell
  • RE: Will Motorola finally give us an Android iPad competitor?

    I can see a tablet coming from them. What's really needed is an android tablet with a high-speed e-ink (better yet, pixel qi) display. With an 'on the beach readable' display and something like the aldiko e-reader There'd be huge opportunity to gain market share.
    relativityboy
  • Android is well established

    Manufacturers and consumers won't be afraid of a tablet version. No one wants to buy the next BetaMax or Kin. That's not likely to happen by buying an Android device. Actually that was much of WM's downfall, no updates or slow with updates.
    LarsDennert