Hewlett Packard, the company that was working on a Windows 7 tablet PC before it wasn’t before it was again, is apparently going through the same stop-and-go development cycle with a Google Android tablet, according to All Things Digital.
The report states that HP was working on a variety of tablets running on different OSes, including Windows 7, Android and the recently-acquired webOS, with an Android tablet set to ship in Q4 2010. Inside sources claim that HP may have scrapped that plan and has at least delayed the Android release.
Concentrating on webOS
The report only speculates as to the reason for the delay or possible shut down. One suggestion is that HP is focusing its resources on a webOS-powered tablet and ditching the multiple operating system strategy. The recent cancellation of the Windows 7 tablet PC Steve Ballmer showed off at CES 2010 provides some evidence. However, in a recent presentation at the Microsoft Worldwide Partner Conference, Ballmer displayed a graphic listing all the companies creating Windows 7 tablets, and it included HP.
Android Not Tablet Ready?
Another suggestion could be that HP feels Android is not yet ready for tablet primetime. Google Android was originally conceived as a mobile operating system, as opposed to the iPad and iPhone’s iOS, which Apple developers initially designed for a tablet device before porting it to the original iPhone. The most current version of Android (2.2, nicknamed Froyo) only supports resolutions up to 800×640 — fine for small-screen smartphones, but not suitable for seven or ten-inch displays.
Rumors suggest that Google Android 3.0, nicknamed Gingerbread, will support higher-resolution screens and have more powerful hardware requirements, including 1GHz processors and at least 512MB of RAM, making it more tablet friendly.
Android 3.0 is scheduled for a Q4 2010 release. Soon after, major manufacturers could release a spate of potential “iPad Killers” and the new tablet market could really expand.
Source: All Things Digital