Over the weekend Sanjay Jha wasn’t ready to confirm or deny Motorola’s plans for bringing an Android tablet to market while speaking on Android and the boost it has given Motorola’s cell phone business, but now analyst Ashok Kumar has it from “people familiar with the project” that Motorola is not only working on one, but also planning to release its slate as soon as November. The tablet will feature a 10-inch form factor and — in keeping with Motorola’s commitment to be ahead of the Android curve — will be running on Gingerbread (Android 3.0).
This should further confuse the release time frame of the next iteration of Android, which some sources have claimed won’t be making it to devices until early 2011. Motorola’s November timeframe, however, lines up with early reports of an October release for 3.0. If phone manufacturers are yet to get Android 2.2 on handsets aside from Google’s own Nexus One over two months after its official release, we have to question whether a tablet could see a yet unannounced version of Android on a tablet so soon. Unless of course Google is approaching the Android 3.0 release differently and working closely with manufacturers before an official announcement. Perhaps this Motorola tablet is even the fabled Google tablet that the search giant has had a hand in developing for Verizon (the Moto/VZW/Google team-up has resulted in several hit handsets at this point and helped launch Android onto the fast track to success).
We won’t know for sure whether the OS version or the release date is off, or if we are in for a pleasant surprise and both will hold true and we will be seeing both Gingerbread and a Motorola tablet just in time for the holiday season. One thing is for sure: if Motorola’s streak of knocking it out of the park with high-end Android smartphones carries over to their tablet ventures, we could finally be in for some worthwhile devices in the slate format. Get ready to hear the term “iPad killer” tossed around even more than it already is.
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